Framed by James Ponti is another Intermediate Nutmeg Nominee to check off my reading list. The story begins with main character Florian being kidnapped, before backtracking to the events leading up to this moment.
Florian just moved to Washington with his parents. He is quite brilliant, owing much of his intelligence to TOAST (Theory of All Small Things). Basically this means he pays close attention to the small details in order to better understand the bigger picture. His new neighbor Margaret bonds with him over TOAST, and they use it to analyze people.
This is what gets them involved in a case of stolen artwork from their local museum. Florian’s attention to detail gets him recognition from the FBI and from the bad guys. He is asked to be a covert asset to the FBI and goes through undercover training. Unfortunately, he may not be as hidden as he thought. Readers will find out how/why the head of the Ukrainian cartel kidnapped Florian, and if the true art robbers will be caught.
I appreciated this book’s clear plot and writing style. I think the story can lead to fun conversations and observation/writing exercises for kids to try TOAST in real life.