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Cover image for The finisher : a novel
Format:
Title:
The finisher : a novel
ISBN:
9780545652209

9780545722322

9780545689038

9781447263005
Edition:
First edition.
Publication:
New York : Scholastic Press, 2014.
Physical Description:
497 pages ; 22 cm.
Series title(s):
Number in series:
bk. 1.
Summary:
"Why would Quentin Herms flee into the Quag? There was nothing in the Quag except certain death. Vega Jane has never left the village of Wormwood. But this isn't unusual--nobody has ever left the village of Wormwood. At least not until Quentin Herms vanishes into the unknown. Vega knows Quentin didn't just leave--he was chased. And he's left behind a very dangerous trail of clues that only she can decode. The Quag is a dark forest filled with terrifying beasts and bloodthirsty Outliers. But just as deadly are the threats that exist within the walls of Wormwood. It is a place built on lies, where influential people are willing to kill to keep their secrets. Vega is determined to uncover the truth--but the closer she gets, the more she risks her life"-- Provided by publisher.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader MG+ 5.2 20.

Accelerated Reader AR MG+ 5.2 20.0 164930.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 4.4 27 Quiz: 62959.
Holds:

Available:*

Library
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TEEN FICTION Baldacci, D.
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TEEN FICTION Baldacci, D.
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TEEN FIC BALDACCI
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YA FICTION - BALDACCI
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FICTION - BALDACCI
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Baldacci, D.
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YA FIC BALDACCI 2014
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YA BALDACCI
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YA BALDACCI
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YA BALDACCI
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On Order

Summary

Summary

#1 New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci as you've never seen him before.

Why would Quentin Herms flee into the Quag? There was nothing in the Quag except certain death.

Vega Jane has never left the village of Wormwood. But this isn't unusual -- nobody has ever left the village of Wormwood. At least not until Quentin Herms vanishes into the unknown.

Vega knows Quentin didn't just leave -- he was chased. And he's left behind a very dangerous trail of clues that only she can decode.

The Quag is a dark forest filled with terrifying beasts and bloodthirsty Outliers. But just as deadly are the threats that exist within the walls of Wormwood. It is a place built on lies, where influential people are willing to kill to keep their secrets. Vega is determined to uncover the truth -- but the closer she gets, the more she risks her life.


Author Notes

David Baldacci was born in Richmond, Virginia on August 5, 1960. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia. He practiced law in Washington D.C. as a trial and corporate lawyer.

His first novel, Absolute Power, was published in 1996. It won Britain's prestigious W.H. Smith's Thumping Good Read award for fiction in 1997 and was adapted as a movie starring Clint Eastwood. His other works include Total Control, The Winner, The Simple Truth, Saving Faith, True Blue, One Summer and End Game. He writes numerous series including King and Maxwell, Freddy and the French Fries, the Camel Club, Will Robie, Shaw and Katie James, John Puller, Vega Jane, and Amos Decker. He also published a novella entitled Office Hours and has authored five original screenplays.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 5

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-9-Thriller writer Baldacci here ventures into the world of middle-grade fiction with lackluster results. Vega Jane's world consists of one village, Wormwood. She's never left it. As far as she knows, no one has. But when she catches a glimpse of her fellow worker disappearing into the woods, she's soon caroming from one near-disaster after another as the story snowballs to a calamitous finale. She must deal with the Morrigone, a group of misogynists who may or may not be her allies, and the ever-present threat of an Outlier invasion, all while trying to keep her brother safe and solve the mystery of why so many people are suddenly having "events." Too many plot threads turn what could have been an action-packed page-turner into a sprawling, fantasy-trope-filled muddle that leaves listeners bored and frustrated. This work is overambitious and unresolved, especially given how long listeners must stick with the story just to get to the end, only to find that most of their questions remain unanswered. The only redeeming factor is Nicola Barber's stellar work voicing the clever impudence of Vega Jane. The sarcastic insults delivered so freely by Vega contain the perfect balance of frustration and wit that will cause the most reticent listener to chuckle. Fantasy lovers will pick this up eagerly, but only the most die-hard will return for future installments.-Michaela Schied, Indian River Middle School, Philadelphia, NY (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publisher's Weekly Review

Crime novelist Baldacci detours into middle-grade fiction with a dark and wild mixture of fantasy, science fiction, and myth. The story begins as 14-year-old Vega Jane realizes her mentor, Quentin Herms, has gone missing. Vega knows there is danger about and her magic skills are not enough to handle it. Her world soon begins to crumble as she discovers the lies of her town, Wormwood, and it's council, but she has a long way to go before she is safe. Barbara narrates in a charming and vibrant voice that captures Vega's personality and guides listeners through this magical world. Her soft delivery and English accent are inviting. She creates clear and distinguished voices for the characters that stand apart from Vega's first-person perspective. Equally important, she balances timing, projection, and tone to create some fantastic moments of tension and excitement throughout the book. Ages 10-14. A Scholastic hardcover. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Horn Book Review

Vega Jane works hard as a Finisher in an artisan factory in the village of Wormwood. After a friend disappears into the dangerous forest surrounding Wormwood, she delves into the truth behind her town and its Council--and what she finds unravels everything she's ever known. Baldacci presents a strong, intelligent heroine, but the book's uneven pacing and unusual dialect are disorienting. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Kirkus Review

Baldacci takes a late and none-too-nimble leap aboard the children's-fantasy bandwagon with this tale of a rebellious teenager in a town surrounded by a monster-ridden forest. Vega Jane gets by putting the finishing touches on high-quality manufactured goods (which, she later discovers, are thrown into a pit). She gets inklings both that Wormwood has a hidden past and isn't the world's only settlement after the town's other Finisher flees into the deadly Quag, leaving behind a map and a bestiary that catalogs its creatures. Before she finally follows him, hundreds of pages later, she is forced to compete in the town's Duelum, which is a regular round of previously males-only bare-knuckle fights for which there is no clear rationale. In labored efforts to create a sense of otherness, the author trots in a host of invented animals (garms, adars, jabbits and so on) and uses British cant ("The niff that bloke sent off"). He also replaces all mention of "man," "woman," "human" and "dog" with, respectively, "male," "female," "Wug" or "Wugmort," and "canine," as in: "a male had killed his female for no cause other than he was a vile Wug" and "I didn't like my stuff male-handled." Despite these efforts, this is all familiar territory, from the isolated town with secretive leaders bent on preserving the status quo to violent visions, hidden rooms and libraries, characters with ambiguous agendas, a hot-tempered teen protagonist with nascent magical powers and three magical tools that practically fall into her hands. There's even a ring. With some perfunctory martial training from her boyfriend, Vega Jane improbably defeats several ravening monsters as well as a string of much larger and more experienced males, then flies off over the town walls to have future adventures. Like many crossover efforts from name-brand authors: overstuffed and underinspired. (Fantasy. 11-13)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

*Starred Review* What happens when an international best-selling crime novelist tries his hand at a youth fantasy? Well, in this case, success. Baldacci, best known for writing thrillers, also has a talent for creating magical worlds. At first glance, though, Wormwood seems mostly depressing. Like most other Wugs, 14-year-old Vega Jane is dirty, hungry, and deprived. The few things that keep her going are her friend Delph; her brother, John; and a tree where she goes to ponder. (Pondering is in short supply in Wormwood.) She also has her job at the Stacks, putting the finishing touches on pretty objects. But everything changes one morning when she spies her mentor, Quentin Herms, heading into the Quag, the terrifying forest that surrounds Wormwood. There are beasts inside the Quag, and supposedly nothing past it, so why would Herms run? The cryptic note he leaves behind raises more questions, and despite danger from many directions, Vega is a girl who wants answers. Baldacci gets several things just right. He offers readers a smart, tough heroine worth rooting for; provides enough hints of a mysterious backstory to keep them wondering; and builds each chapter to a cliff-hanger that pushes them to turn the page. There is also head-spinning action, which is sometimes a bit too repetitious. How often can Vega be chased by a monster and run faster than she has ever run in her life? The ending is predictable, but it leads seamlessly into the next book, where, perhaps, some of Vega's answers await. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: As with Rick Riordan and Ridley Pearson, among others, the interest surrounding a high-profile author writing children's books should garner this a ton of attention.--Cooper, Ilene Copyright 2014 Booklist