Breaking All the Rules

Nine-year-old protagonist Maggie O'Nell is having trouble adapting to life without her father. It’s been one hundred and nine days since he left, and Maggie still doesn’t know where he has gone, why her mother refuses to give her any information, or why her mother never wants to spend time with Maggie anymore.

After punching Carlton Ambrose directly in the jaw – the boy who just happens to be the son of her mother’s best friend – Maggie is forced to spend two terrible weeks of her after-school life with Carlton, the most seemingly perfect and annoying boy that ever lived! But even though Carlton and Maggie continually argue, Carlton offers to help Maggie find her dad. Realizing that Carlton’s genius computer skills may be just what she needs, Maggie reluctantly accepts his help, though with a few rules in place.

Using the collection of clues Maggie’s gathered in her secret detective journal, Carlton is able to find her father’s new address on the internet. Taking Carlton along for the trip, when they finally arrive, Maggie finds herself faced with a story she wasn’t expecting, and the daunting realization that things might not go back to the way they were before. 


Carter has messed everything up. His best friend is mad at him. He asked the wrong girl to dance. He got suspended. And the worst part is that no one believes that none of it is really his fault. 

Newly diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder, Carter is trying to figure out how to cope himself while also keeping his secret from spreading around the school. Navigating the difficult worlds of school, soccer, and family, Carter must learn to deal with the whispers, taunts, and unwanted sympathy when his secret is finally leaked, all while preparing for the championship soccer tournament that is right around the corner.

Determined to prove to his team, his best friend, and also himself that he is just as capable as everyone else, Carter tries his best to help his team win the championship. But when it comes time for the tournament, and Carter is pulled out of his usual spot in the goal and placed in the field, he is not so sure he can do it after all.

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