Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Fourth Stall

The Fourth Stall by Chris Rylander, 2011. 314 pages. Published by Walden Pond Press. Source: Library.
Chris Rylander delivers a funny Ferris Bueler-style middle grade novel with The Fourth Stall.
Do you need something? Mac can get it for you. It's what he does—he and his best friend and business manager, Vince. Their methods might sometimes run afoul of the law, or at least the school code of conduct, but if you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can pay him, Mac is on your side. His office is located in the East Wing boys' bathroom, fourth stall from the high window. And business is booming.
Or at least it was, until one particular Monday. It starts with a third grader in need of protection. And before this ordeal is over, it's going to involve a legendary high school crime boss named Staples, an intramural gambling ring, a graffiti ninja, the nine most dangerous bullies in school, and the first Chicago Cubs World Series game in almost seventy years. And that's just the beginning. Mac and Vince soon realize that the trouble with solving everyone else's problems is that there's no one left to solve yours.
First Sentence:
You need something?
The Fourth Stall, I do not recall where I first heard about this book, but from that first time I knew that one day I would need to read it.

From page one I knew that The Fourth Stall was going to be one that I would enjoy. Why, because from the first paragraph the voice of the Mac, the main character, grabbed me with his mafia-ish wording. I loved how throughout the book he would use lines from a couple old-school movies just because he thought it fit the situation and his job.

One of the things that makes The Fourth Stall such a good book would have to be the friendship between Mac and Vince. I loved the two of the them because they gave the book a buddy read type feel, and the fact that they had their ups and downs throughout the (and a few trust issues) book definitely made for an interesting read. I really liked how things played out in regards to Mac and Vince's falling out and how it affected the plot. Very well played, Mr. Rylander.

While the plot and writing are definitely great in The Fourth Stall, what really brings things together is the characters-from the 'good' guys (Mac, Vince, and crew) and the bad guys (I won't name any names here).
Right now, I could not tell you why exactly I liked Mac, but I did and I bet that y'all would like him as well.

What I loved the most about this book was that just as I began to think that I had everything figured out, Mr. Rylander would throw a curve ball into the plot and leave me back at square one. While I was thrown for the vast majority of the book as to whom was betraying Mac and gang, I did in the last bit of the book finally put everything together.
Ever read a book so fast and enjoyed it so much that you just cannot think of a single negative thing to say about it, well, that is what happened to me with The Fourth Stall by Chris Rylander. I thought he did an excellent job with the voice of the various characters, the plot, story line, and just everything that I have no complaints about this one.

Final Verdict: The voice of the characters paired with Chris Rylander's writing will have you begging for more and not wanting The Fourth Stall to end.

The Fourth Stall  earns 4.5 out of 5 pineapples.

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