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Hoot [Hardcover]

Carl Hiaasen
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sep 2002
Unfortunately, Roy’s first acquaintance in Florida is Dana Matherson, a well-known bully. Then again, if Dana hadn’t been sinking his thumbs into Roy’s temples and mashing his face against the school-bus window, Roy might never have spotted the running boy. And the running boy is intriguing: he was running away from the school bus, carried no books, and–here’s the odd part–wore no shoes. Sensing a mystery, Roy sets himself on the boy’s trail. The chase introduces him to potty-trained alligators, a fake-fart champion, some burrowing owls, a renegade eco-avenger, and several extremely poisonous snakes with unnaturally sparkling tails.
Roy has most definitely arrived in Carl Hiaasen’s Florida.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers; First Edition First Printing edition (Sep 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375821813
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375821813
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 15 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,950,686 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Carl Hiaasen was born and raised in Florida. He is the author of twelve novels, including the bestselling Nature Girl, Skinny Dip, Sick Puppy and Lucky You, and three bestselling children's books, Hoot, Flush and Scat. They have been translated into 34 languages, 33 more than he can read or write. Carl Hiaasen also writes an award-winning column for The Miami Herald.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Hoot, Carl Hiaasen's debut novel for younger readers is a very special treat indeed. The writing is exceptionally good, and the characters extremely quirky and well realised. It's incredibly readable despite a story premise that is not sparklingly original. But no matter, there's an engaging "feel-good" vibe running through the whole book.

The setting, as with Hiaasen's crime thrillers for adults such as Basket Case and Sick Puppy, is sunny Florida and the heat, swamps, dust and pancakes all contribute to the authentic atmosphere of the book. His favourite environmental theme is here too, as is the thoroughly watertight plotting. There's an engaging mystery set up on the very first page and it builds nicely with more twists and turns as the story unfolds--all of them reassuringly tied up come the final pages.

Roy Eberhardt's story begins when he is being mashed up against the window of the school bus by bully Dana Matherson. He spots an athletic bare-footed boy running away from the bus and wonders where he is going. Further investigations, after he has unwisely smashed Dana's nose in to get away from him, leads Roy into the middle of a battle between a green-minded local runaway and the proposed opening of a pancake restaurant. The development threatens the habitat of a burrowing-owl colony and it's an issue that several people in the community have differing views upon--not all of them legal.

Roy carries the story very well indeed. He's likable and persistent in the face of unexpected and challenging adventure, despite his modest size. The cause he chooses to support is eminently worthy--he weighs up the strength of his beliefs with the necessity to slightly bend the law. This is a good story with some great writing--a winning combination. (For readers aged 10 and over.) --John McLay --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


" It seems unlikely that the master of noir-tinged, surrealistic black humor would write a novel for young readers. And yet, there has always been something delightfully juvenile about Hiaasen' s imagination; beneath the bent cynicism lurks a distinctly 12-year-old cackle. In this thoroughly engaging tale of how middle schooler Roy Eberhardt, new kid in Coconut Cove, learns to love South Florida, Hiaasen lets his inner kid run rampant, both the subversive side that loves to see grown-ups make fools of themselves and the righteously indignant side, appalled at the mess being made of our planet. The story is full of offbeat humor, buffoonish yet charming supporting characters, and genuinely touching scenes of children enjoying the wildness of nature. He deserves a warm welcome into children' s publishing." -- "Booklist"
" A wonderful tour-de-force." -- "The Boston Globe"
" A rollicking, righteous story." -- "The Miami Herald"
" You don' t have to be a young adult to enjoy it." -- "The New York Times Book Review"
" Yes, it "is" a hoot." -- "The Washington Post Book World"

"From the Hardcover edition." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sharp, and devastatingly funny 31 Dec 2003
By A Customer
Actually I liked this even more than Hiaasen's 'grown up' books. It's pleasantly short (though not so short as to be unsatisfying), with a tightly plotted story.
The plot is a real page-turner with a great cast of characters. The jokes work on two levels: the subtle ones that Hiaasen slips under your radar and then the funny set-pieces (no, I'm not going to include any spoilers!) with lots of physical gags.
The bad guys are well drawn, not just cardboard characters - the only one I found annoying was the hopeless police patrolman who was just a little too cliched. The school counsellor will send shivers down your back, and the building site manager is very funny - we've all met or worked with someone just like him!
I'd highly recommend it for anyone, probably the youngest at about 7 or 8 if they're a confident reader, but adults will love it too. I find Hiaasen's adult books a little *too* cynical but this struck exactly the right balance between cynicism and hope. A very satisfying read all round.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hiaasen just kidding 21 April 2004
Even when he is writing for children, Hiaasen creates great villains (who always meet fitting fates), and charming, unlikely heroes. Threats to the Floridian environment are of course his other recurring theme.
In this case, the new boy in school finds his feet and new friends as he fights to prevent a new restaurant destroying several pairs of rare burrowing owls, and the school bully from destroying his face.
Fast-paced and fun, a book to encourage teenagers to read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hiaasen is a master 9 Jun 2006
By A. R.
I am a big fan of Carl Hiaasen's. He perfectly captures the frustrations of being picked on, and unaccepted as a child. His encounters with Dana, the bully, are great as Roy always has a way to win out.

The author does an incredible job of showing the different styles of activism that different people resort to. He presents the reader with the contemporary clash of free enterprise versus global ecological issues. He has a lot to say about parenting, and he has some great insights into the methods of dealing with bullies.

This is a great book for the young teenagers, but I think the adult fans might get a kick out of it, too. HOOT is definitely a title that you'll want for your collection. Another book that I strongly recommend for this age group "Why Some Cats are Rascals". Actually it is a series of three books...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hoot's hilarious! 28 July 2005
By A Customer
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. A new kid to sunny Florida, Roy Eberhardt,spots a mysterious shoeless young boy running past the school bus when evil bully Dana Matherson presses his face against the window.
From that moment on, right at the start of the book, Roy enters a whirlwind of mystery; finding clues, retracng his steps...what exactly has this shoeless kid got to do with the building of the pancake house a few blocks away?
Creating a witty, interesting and funny main character,Carl Hiassson has given you a fabulous taster of his ingenious work. You won't be able to put this book down!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the not put downable book 15 Sep 2005
we are currently reading this book in class and its one of those ones that we just can't put down. we havn't finished yet and get really annoyed when we do have to do writing for a block!
she wont let us take them home to study incase we read ahead!
some people (dominic) have to get their book confisgated!
a very funny, silly plot which you can't put down
a book that we all love.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Environmental struggle for kids 22 Dec 2006
Roy Eberhardt has just moved from Montana to Florida. He misses the mountains and in the school bus he is bullied by the enormous and stupid Dana Matherson. Then he sees he boy running on bare feet and is fascinated by the question who this boy is. Slowly but surely he gains the trust of the boy and his stepsister Beatrice Leep. The story is about a new branch of Mother Paula's All-American Pancake House, which will be build on a site where cute and endangered miniature owls are living in holes in the ground. After numerous adventures Roy finds that life in Florida is not so bad after all.

A children's book (10-12 years) that is a smooth read. Roy may be a rather docile, politically correct boy with very understanding parents, but the story line has wit and a good pace and matters are solved with a lot of creativity rather than force.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars bit of a hoot 20 July 2006
Interesting ideas, with eco friendly theme and good sense of isolation in the kids. however do we need another character who thinks that farting is cool or even funny, i mean really!? Hiassen keeps a lively pace and you do root for the villains to get come uppance, but the end lacked any bite. neat cover though!
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3.0 out of 5 stars what a hoot 4 Oct 2004
By emma
This novel was great fun to read and i really enjoyed it. I especially enjoyed the part where dana got his feet stuck in the rat traps!!!.
It has very good sections on bullying and environmental issues and I would definately recommend reading it. In the book there is a boy who is very determined to stop a big company from building a pancake house on a plot of land where there are burrows with owls in them and if he is not quick they will be sqashed to a pancake!!!!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars HOOT.
With its winning combination of off-beat humour and fun characters Hoot with its themes of bullying and environmental activism is a highly enjoyable topical read which whilst... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Tracy Terry
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable read
I give Hoot by Carl Hiassen 5 stars. I was thoroughly drawn in to the story and found it a challenge to put the book down.
Published 12 months ago by Allan Bruce
4.0 out of 5 stars Daft and a little subversive
Hoot is a funny preteen story set in a town in Florida. At its heart is a message about standing up for what you believe in. Read more
Published on 22 Aug 2012 by The Bookette
5.0 out of 5 stars Save the burrowing owls
This is the second of Carl Hiaasen's books for children I have read, and it lived up to my expectations after reading the first. Read more
Published on 20 Mar 2012 by Mrs. K. A. Wheatley
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Adventure
This is a story about a boy, Roy, who has just moved to Florida. His first day at school he gets called `Tex' and the nickname sticks and the harassment begins. Read more
Published on 2 April 2008 by Steven R. McEvoy
3.0 out of 5 stars hoot
The novel was a very good book. The way the authur based it on the themes. The most interesting theme was the environment. It was a good book.
Published on 4 Oct 2004 by amy
3.0 out of 5 stars Hoot5
This is a novel called HOOT it was written by Carl Hiaasen. One of the main characters in the story is Roy. Read more
Published on 4 Oct 2004 by slambert
5.0 out of 5 stars book review
it was funny it was good i enjoyed it better than doing english work mullet fingers was interresting but i want to know what happens to him in the end it was a hoot of a book i... Read more
Published on 4 Oct 2004 by sinead
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