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*Hacking Harvard* by Robin Wasserman- young adult book review
 
Hacking Harvard
by Robin Wasserman
Grades 10-12 336 pages Simon Pulse September 2007 Paperback    

Robin Wasserman departs from her popular ďSeven Deadly SinsĒ series to write an original teen novel that has the characters hacking into one of the most elite universities in the country.

Eric, Max and Schwarz have been best friends for years. Schwarz is the boy genius, 16 and a freshman at Harvard. Max is the ringleader, always coming up with new trouble for the boys to get into. Eric is the voice of reason Ė or at least he tries to be. Together they think of themselves as hackers (never to be confused with pranksters). When Max announces that a pair of rival hackers has challenged the group to hack into Harvard, the other boys canít believe it. When itís revealed that the target is none other than the school slacker, the other boys want no part of the bet. When Max announces that his plan is fool-proof and theyíll win $25,000, though, the other boys are all in. What Max, Eric and Schwarz donít realize is that although their plan may seem fool-proof, the rival hackers have a few tricks up their sleeves and donít plan on losing $25,000 without a fight.

The back cover says Hacking Harvard is like Oceanís 11 meets The Princeton Review, and thatís a pretty apt description. Seeing the boys try to implement each phase of their plan without being caught keeps the tension running high and makes the reader root for their success. Wasserman also keeps the identity of the narrator secret for a portion of the book, which also increases the tension as all the reader knows is that the narrator is aware of the plan but isnít one of the boys.

Hacking Harvard should appeal to both boys and girls equally as they are taken along for the ride, cheering for the boys as they try to pull off their hacking capers. While the premise may require a certain suspension of disbelief, this does not detract from the fact that this is a fun book. I would rewatch Oceanís 11 for the thrill of the chase; Iíd reread Hacking Harvard for the same reason.


Young adult book reviews for ages 12 and up - middle school and high school students

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  Jilian Vallade/2007 for curled up with a good kid's book  






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