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Sammy Keyes and the Power of Justice Jack (Sammy Keyes #15)

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  593 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
"The most winning junior detective ever in teen lit. (Take that, Nancy Drew!)" —Midwest Children's Book Review

Sammy thought she'd seen all the weirdness her town had to offer—and then she met Justice Jack, Santa Martina's very own superhero. Well, really he's just a guy in spandex and a mask who rides around town on a dirt bike, hoping to find some crime to fight.

The old f
Paperback, 320 pages
Published December 11th 2012 by Yearling (first published January 1st 2012)
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Community Reviews

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Caradith Craven
Jul 12, 2012 Caradith Craven rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Van Draanen delivers another winner with her masterful storytelling. In the fifteenth book in the Sammy Keyes series, readers are introduced to Santa Martina's most colorful, zaniest character ever. Justice Jack rides around town on a dirt bike wearing spandex, a tool belt , and a mask. Is he a crime fighting superhero, or just an attention-grabbing oddball?

Readers are entertained by 304 pages of mystery, relationships, dialogue, fascinating characters, and crazy fun. The sub-plots iintertwine
Jul 04, 2012 Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
A different sort of ending than other Sammy Keyes books. I am constantly amazed at Wendelin Van Draanen's commitment to writing with themes. Justice Jack's main theme was heroes, and was very refreshing amongst a sea of books for teens that revolve strictly around romance, friendship, forgiveness, etc...some of which are great themes, but it's nice to have something besides that. Sure, the plot is more predictable than others in the series. But the theme really redeems the book for me.
Kamaria Johnson
May 13, 2016 Kamaria Johnson rated it liked it
Do you ever see a grown man in a costume dressed up as his own superhero? Will you ever want to stop crime and change the world no matter what the cost is? Have your best friend ever broke your relationship all because a boy she had a crush on? I had never seen any one knock on my door and claims to be a superhero. Even though I might put my life at danger I would fight crime to help save the justice of others. The genre of this book is mystery. This book is heart warming because it gives the re ...more
Melissa McShane
Oct 31, 2012 Melissa McShane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sammy and her friends are celebrating Christmas, Dutch-style, with Dot Vorhees' family when they meet Justice Jack--a would-be superhero with a motorcycle and a red-and-gold stretchy bodysuit. He's trying to save Santa Martina from crime and villainy, and he'd like Sammy to join him, since she's gained a reputation for solving crimes. (One of my favorite things about this book is that Justice Jack never stops being amazed and slightly horrified that Sammy doesn't wear a costume. Her protests tha ...more
Moussa Niang
Aug 23, 2012 Moussa Niang rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1) I enjoyed the book Sammy Keyes and the power of Justice Jack because the author makes the villian look like a hero. For example Sammy found out that Justice Jack is a fraud and has been faking all of these crimes(p.275). Another example is when Sammy found out that Jack's mom stole the mayor's statue. Jack's mom looked innocent at first but ended up a theif in jail(p.283).

2) You would like this book if you like mystery action and other heroic things. I say this because Sammy and friends try t
Feb 20, 2013 Cat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
This was interesting. I feel like this was the first book where van Draanen moves the mystery to the back seat, and focuses more on the teenager-ness of Sammy and her friends. While there is still a mystery--there's crazy new "superhero" in town, and his inspiration? Sammy! But what happens when he has to find a missing statue?--it takes a backseat to the changing dynamics between Sammy and her best friend, Marissa.
That shift was oddly welcome. One of the most appealing parts of the Sammy Keyes
Sammy is in 8th grade, she is still slipping into Gram's senior high rise. Hudson is still the wise sidekick. Sammy and Casey have to meet on the down low because of Heather but have settled into a routine. Enter Justice Jack, complicated by the nefarious Wedgie Woman who has disappeared with investments from various folks in the Senior High Rise. Lots of plot bits come together from other books and this provides a satisfying conclusion to the current mysteries and some conflicts that have linge ...more
Aug 26, 2012 colleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: youth, mysteries
i have to say this is new one is my favorite of the series. it had a lot of great scenes, some great detective work and very clear characters. my only complaint is that a couple of plot threads seem to get dropped too easily.
Nov 01, 2011 Yuseyz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, own
This latest Sammy Keyes book is full of new adventures. Marissa turns back into a boy crazy girl. Billy releases his inner superhero. Casey and Sammy are keeping their secret relationship... all the way into the junkyard where someone else has a bigger secret...
Not the best in the series, but better than the one with the dead cats. plus, i'm always happy to read about Sammy. good series overall.
Jenn Estepp
Good old Sammy Keyes. Not the strongest in the series, especially on mystery front, but it's always good to spend time with her.
Aug 02, 2012 Katy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
yay for sammy finally starting to grow up a bit. I wish she'd been around when I was a kid - she's fabulous.
Jul 17, 2012 Meghan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Went a little too fast for me and was not the best Sammy Keyes Book but still I couldn't put it down!
Jul 07, 2012 Angela rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kidsbooks, mysteries
Not as good as others in the series and fairly transparent as far as the mystery but a surprising development for Sammy near the book's end promises to be a game changer for the series!
Mar 25, 2012 Allison rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sammy Keyes is an absolute rock star who can do no wrong, & as her character develops further in each book, I come to love her even more.
Sammy & the gang all know that Santa Martina is home to any number of unusual people & "characters." You don't have to go very far to figure that out. But they've recently run across a startlingly unique local resident while celebrating a Dutch Christmas at their friend Dot's house out in the boonies - a young man who acts as an honest-to-goodness
Dec 17, 2013 Jason rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

Sammy Keyes and the Power of Justice Jack was a great book because of the desperate actions of a person who wants to become recognized in a city. However, some parts in the story were just so “fast-going” one after another that I couldn’t really keep up with what I was reading, until the very end. The author (Wendelin Van Draanen) described the situation in an immense appeal: “‘With the return of our city’s symbolic statue, my tour as Justice Jack is over. It is now up to you to carry on the wor
Mar 20, 2013 Reagan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013-favorites
That was... different. But in a good way.

This book was a lot different from what I was expecting. I thought it would be all about Justice Jack and his craziness, but this book was actually very emotional and it had a lot of side things going on. The whole mystery was saved for the end and that made for a very fast-paced story. The characters are just so great. I saw a lot of foreshadowing in this book, and I can't wait to read the next book.

I really loved the character developement in this boo
Natalie C.
Although the plot was good, I predicted the conclusion from the beginning, and I felt that the foreshadowing was done a little too well. It’s highly unrealistic that she didn’t figure it out sooner considering her detective track record, Sammy even picked up the clues needed! I was a little disappointed that Sammy and Marissa didn’t get the reward money, it would have helped them in their family situations, and Justice Jack really didn’t deserve it. I wish they would have given a little more bac ...more
Mar 20, 2016 Linda rated it liked it
I love Sammy Keyes and have never given any of this series less than 4 stars, but this one just seemed to drag. While I enjoy reading about Sammy's difficult problems with her life, in this story she seemed to take a back seat to this other weird guy named Justice Jack, a wannabe superhero who was just plain weird for an adult. Sammy herself is witty and smart and the author makes her come alive with a fresh quirky personality- a girl with quick comebacks and one who doesn't care about what othe ...more
Feb 18, 2012 Alicia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, humor, series
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 30, 2013 Judy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Girls in grades 5 and up
The Sammy Keyes books are always good to recommend to pre-teen and teenage girls. Told in the first person, the story has humor, usual and unusual adolescent problems and relationships, and just a touch of romance (nothing more than the occasional kiss). This is one of the very few series where I've read every book--they're that good. Encourage girls to start with Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief, which sets the scene for all the subsequent books. After that, it's helpful but not essential to rea ...more
Aug 25, 2012 Yapha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sammy Keyes is back! Her small town of Santa Martina has a new superhero, Justice Jack. But is he really who he says he is? And where has her grandmother's neighbor, Mrs. Wedgewood disappeared to? I really enjoyed this book, much more so than the last few Sammy Keyes books. It feels like she is back to the original Sammy Keyes that I knew and loved in the beginning of the series. Highly recommended for fans of the series.
Naomi Schmidt
Nov 25, 2012 Naomi Schmidt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sammy Keyes never disappoints. When Justice Jack, a real live superhero turns up in Santa Martina, Sammy isn't really surprised. Her friends and her better judgement tell her not to get involved, but that's a pretty tall order for Sammy Keyes. Wendelin Van Draanan packs so many subplots into her books, it was easy for me to lose sight of the "mystery", but it was there, and, of course, it gets solved. Hope I didn't ruin the ending for you there.
This was pretty good. A good message. Sammy and her friends are in eighth grade by now and there's a lot of sneaking around and eighth grade "romance". Heather takes an inappropriate picture of her and Danny and sends it around to everyone to try and make Marissa jealous. Lots of that kind of stuff going on on the sidelines while the "main" story is happening.

I like Justice Jack. He makes me smile.
3.5 stars. Marissa was supremely annoying in this book, but I'm hopeful that it's finally done and over with now. Everything minus Justice Jack was interesting- I didn't really care what his deal was, how much he knew about what was going on. A decent entry in the Sammy Keyes series, but I'm much more excited about the next book.

(view spoiler)
Anna Bergmark
Nov 21, 2015 Anna Bergmark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not just a corny "superhero" but a rather corny plot as well. It's a good thing there's a lot of other things going on. That makes up for both the dorkiness and a few goody two shoes-moments. (And you're starting to feel that you're on the homestretch now, which makes each book count for more. On what keynote will we be leaving all our friends? And Heather Acosta...)
Samantha Reeder
Feb 01, 2016 Samantha Reeder rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it!!!!!

I love this book, but there wasn't really a mystery to it. It was mostly personal things going on in Sammy's life. Like the fact that she had to deal with the breakup between Marissa and Billy, or her and Casey trying to hide their relationship from Casey's crazy mom and sister!
Sammy is growing up and questioning her own goals for her life. There were of course the usually awesomely weird characters. I love some of Justice Jack's sayings like, "Giving a non-stop tour of stomp city". I really liked this book. I really like the way the author dealt with the quirks in friendships but kept it fun and interesting.
Tori  De
Jul 27, 2015 Tori De rated it it was amazing
This is a really great book--the pacing is even and there's a lot of understandable characters. It was really nice to read something quite realistic in the category it was written for. Sammy has got to be one of the most admirable middle graders as she tries to tell the truth and even ACTUALLY CARES ABOUT SCHOOL. The wit and humor, of course, is a plus.
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Sammy keyes forever: New books: Power of Justice Jack 1 6 Jan 19, 2012 02:47PM  
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Wendelin Van Draanen has written more than thirty novels for young readers and teens. She is the author of the 18-book Edgar-winning Sammy Keyes series, and wrote Flipped which was named a Top 100 Children’s Novel for the 21st Century by SLJ, and became a Warner Brothers feature film with Rob Reiner directing. Her novel The Running Dream was awarded ALA’s Schneider Family Award for its portrayal o ...more
More about Wendelin Van Draanen...

Other Books in the Series

Sammy Keyes (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief
  • Sammy Keyes and the Skeleton Man (Sammy Keyes, #2)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy (Sammy Keyes, #3)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Runaway Elf (Sammy Keyes, #4)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary (Sammy Keyes, #5)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Hollywood Mummy (Sammy Keyes, #6)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Search for Snake Eyes (Sammy Keyes, #7)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Art of Deception (Sammy Keyes, #8)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Psycho Kitty Queen (Sammy Keyes, #9)
  • Sammy Keyes And the Dead Giveaway (Sammy Keyes, #10)

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