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Escape from Shadow Island (Max Cassidy #1)

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  457 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
"'My mum killed my dad, then dragged his body all the way along the beach . . . I don't believe a word of it'"

""

Max Cassidy is a teenage escapologist, so good he's nicknamed the Half-pint Houdini. His father disappeared two years ago and his body has never been found. His mother is now serving a life sentence for her husband's murder.

Max's mission to learn the truth about
...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 16th 2010 by Walden Pond Press (first published July 2nd 2009)
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(showing 1-30)
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Christian
Aug 15, 2014 Christian rated it really liked it
Shelves: summer-reading
In this book Max must infiltrate and escape shadow island to find his father, free his mom, and free his friends.

I liked the book because I thought it was exiting to hear about his strategies of escape.

I think you would like it if you are interested in adventure and Intensity.
Zach A.
Dec 07, 2010 Zach A. rated it it was amazing
Escape From Shadow Island:
When There’s No Hope Of Success, Why Even Try?
The next Harry Houdini. The greatest escapologist in the past 10 years. The boy wizard. Max Cassidy has been described as all of those things, but he has a blemish on his reputation. His mom is in jail for the next 18 years for the murder of his father. Only Max, his mother, and Consuela, the Cassidy family aide know that his mother never killed his father. This takes place in Paul Adam’s novel, Max Cassidy; Escape From Sha
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Caroline
Apr 09, 2011 Caroline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I received this book on Friday and was sooo excited to read about an escapologist that I started it right away and the story was so brilliant that I read it in a day! I couldn't put the book down and I thought it is a fantastic idea for a series!

Okay, so I might need to add "don't do this at home" for the kids and all that!
(there's a disclaimer in the first pages of the book and I literally jumped to read what they meant - I'm one tough cookie that way)

The idea of this book is such sheer brillia
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Carmen
Nov 08, 2013 Carmen rated it did not like it
This book feels it is necessary to explain what the definition of “implode” is, and than 20 pages later uses the word “soporific” without any explanation. I don't know if the author thinks he is addressing smart children or dumb adults. This thriller revolves around a teenage boy whose father is murdered and his mother is accused of the crime and put in jail. This seems to be a common theme; this is the second book I've read this summer with this plot (the first is Nothing to Lose by Alex Flinn ...more
Irvington Public Library Teens
Max performs as a 14-year-old escape artist, which is a good thing because his parents can't earn money. His dad is a legendary escape artist who mysteriously disappeared in Santo Domingo two years ago. Max's mother is in prison for murdering his dad, but Max believes she is innocent. After a mysterious stranger comes to Max, saying he knows the truth about his parents, non-stop action/mystery begins! I want to read the sequel "The Jaws of Death" when it is published in August, 2011. -- Steve Fo ...more
Madison
Aug 18, 2014 Madison rated it really liked it
Shelves: summer-reading
Max is a 14-year-old boy who is trying to find his supposedly "dead" father, and get his mother out of jail for a crime she didn't commit. I liked this book because there was a lot of action and suspense, and I would recommend this book to people who enjoy action and mysteries.
Julie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tyler
Mar 23, 2016 Tyler rated it really liked it
Max Cassidy, a brave, young, and at 14 years old, is the worlds foremost escape artist. Learned by his father, Alexander Cassidy, as he was growing up. He taught his son the physical skills that his job needed. These skills were strength, suppleness, agility, and breath control. In Santo Domingo 2 years ago, Max's father, mom, and his fathers assistant traveled to do a show. While Max was in France for a school field trip, something very bad happened in Santo Domingo. When Max got home his whol ...more
Delaney
Nov 26, 2011 Delaney rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Give credit to Paul Adam for making the ending a full on of action, people!


What came to mind was Artemis Fowl while reading this book. I know I shouldn't compare books but my mind just did that itself. Even though Max was a fine enough main character it was odd. A 14 year old boy who cries? Okay so nothing wrong with that, that's fine, but being kind a wimpish like Artemis Fowl? What I did I like about Max was he was strong and knew how to do some ACTION. Like he could get out of handcuffs!

The b
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Katieb (MundieMoms)
I think that Max Cassidy is a book tween and teens will enjoy reading. It's a quick murder, mystery read, as 14 yr old Max is out to prove that his Mum didn't kill his father, a world famous escape artist who was killed two years ago Santo Domingo. Now Max has followed in his father's shoes and can escape from most anything, even the unescapable Shadow Island.

In his quest to prove his Mum's innocence, Max travels from England to Santo Domingo to find answers. Max soon learns that finding his an
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Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
I think that Max Cassidy is a book tween and teens will enjoy reading. It's a quick murder, mystery read, as 14 yr old Max is out to prove that his Mum didn't kill his father, a world famous escape artist who was killed two years ago Santo Domingo. Now Max has followed in his father's shoes and can escape from most anything, even the unescapable Shadow Island.

In his quest to prove his Mum's innocence, Max travels from England to Santo Domingo to find answers. Max soon learns that finding his an
...more
Kenny
Jan 24, 2012 Kenny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book Escape From Shadow Island by Paul Adam is about this teenager who is fourteen years old named Max. As I read about who Max really is, I think this fellow Max is not a great person, but turns out to be adventurous. What surprises me is that Max's family is mostly gone and meaningless. His mother had been accused of murdering his father. When I continued reading on this story, it was pretty depressing to understand how the life of the character, Max was. With mystery, crime, and adventur ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Kira M for TeensReadToo.com

Authorities tell Max his father's dead and his mother killed him. Not believing what he's been told, Max and his guardian, Consuela, have been trying to exonerate Max's mother.

One night, after his magic show act, Max is told by a stranger that his father is still alive, but the man is found murdered in his hotel room before Max can find out where he is. With only the knowledge of where his father was last seen, Max sets out to save his dad.

Corrupt cops, a p
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Michaela Lake
Oct 12, 2013 Michaela Lake rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book came from the local library. I read the first chapter standing by the shelf - literally couldn't put it down! So of course,it had to come home with me.

I like the way we are let in on some of the secrets of escapology. The main character was well drawn and some of the realities of life in show business neatly pointed out.

In my local library this was in the children's section. I think it would be better housed in the teens department, as there is some violence and graphic description, w
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Adele Broadbent
Jun 12, 2015 Adele Broadbent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Max is an escapeologist (The Half Pint Houdini) – just like his father was before he died. But did he die, and why was his mum imprisoned for his murder? When a strange man visits him and tells him his father is alive and his mother framed, Max’s search for the truth begins. When the stranger is also murdered, Max knows he could be in danger but convinces his care giver (Consuela-his dad’s stage assistant) to take him back to Santo Domingo – the central American country where his father disappea ...more
Books Kids Like
Dec 05, 2013 Books Kids Like rated it really liked it
Max Cassidy's father disappeared two years ago, and his mother has spent the entire time in prison accused and convicted of his murder. Max lives in London with his guardian, Consuelo. He attends school and earns money performing as an escape artist--his father's profession. Max decides to return to Santo Domingo, a small country in Central America, where the supposed murder took place in hopes of finding clues that will clear his mother's name. What Max finds is a country ruled by corruption, a ...more
Madison
Sep 24, 2014 Madison rated it really liked it
This book is just another teen spy adventure novel, with a difference! Max Cassidy has no training in martial arts, rare languages, surveillance or any of the other skills teen spies have. But Max does have one thing going for him. He’s an Escapologist. Handcuffs, meters of thick chain, solid doors and even large stretches of icy water are no match for this mini Houdini. So when the Santa Domingo government convict Max’s mum of murdering his father, something he knows she didn’t do, Max sets off ...more
Sandra Stiles
Oct 29, 2010 Sandra Stiles rated it it was amazing
I believe any boy, and many girls, will love this book. Max Cassidy's mother is in jail accused of murdering her husband. Why? Her husband disappeared and she has been accused. Max doesn't believe his mother is guilty and sets out to prove her innocence. His belief is confirmed when a man approaches him and tells him is father is still alive and then the man turns up dead. Someone doesn't want anyone trying to find his father. Powerful people are going to a lot of trouble to keep Max and anyone ...more
Katherine
Apr 25, 2010 Katherine rated it liked it
Shelves: children
Paul Adam writes thrillers for adults, this is his first for children. Max, 14, is an escapologist like his father. His father was murdered 2 years ago, and his mother accused and convicted. A man finds him after one of his shows, tells him to meet him at a hotel because he has information that proves his mother's innocence. When Max gets there, the guy is dead, but has a sequence of numbers under his wig. Max, with the help of Consuela, follows this and other clues in the hopes of speeding up t ...more
Lucas
Dec 19, 2011 Lucas rated it really liked it
Max Cassidy is a 14 year old boy, and is a profesional escapologist, just like his dad. But 2 years ago his dad had a show in Santo Domingo and was supposidly killed by Max's mother and she was sent to prison for 20 years. After Max's show he meets a man Luis Lopez-Vega. He tells Max that his dad is alive and his mother inocent. So he goes down to Santo Domingo to investigate. When he starts snooping around he starts to think this offshore island fortress has somthing to do with his fathers disa ...more
Cathrine Bonham
Mar 15, 2014 Cathrine Bonham rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who liked Alex Rider
This book is a must read for anyone who loved the Alex Rider adventures. Like Alex Rider, Max Cassidy is a fourteen year old boy with extraordinary talents and a very tragic back story.

Max's Mother is in jail for murdering his father and now his father's former magician's assistant is his legal guardian and Max must preform two magic shows a week in order to pay the mortgage.

After a mysterious stranger confronts Max after a show he sets out for south America to find proof that his mom is innoce
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Josh Newhouse
Apr 17, 2010 Josh Newhouse rated it really liked it
Great quick read about a Young Escape artist on a quest to clear his mother of his father's murder! Loved it... but there were a couple hamhanded social action didactic moments and a weird, unresolved ending clearly leading to a sequel that pulled it down to 4 stars!

I wish the author lived in the USA so I could nominate for our state award list, but regardless a great book to get reluctant boys to read full of action, adventure, suspense, and a little lock-picking!

Makes me wonder how much of the
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Douglas Larson
Apr 15, 2012 Douglas Larson rated it liked it
This is the first in a series about a boy who is a self-trained magician. In this story he goes about finding closure over the death of his father in the recent past. The protagonist doesn't quite believe that his father is really dead so he emabarks on a mission to discover the truth, i.e either confirm that his father is dead or find the truth about his dissapearance.
While I like the story overall, I found the prose style a bit awkward at times and some of the key plot points seem too contriv
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WCPL Teens
Mar 22, 2012 WCPL Teens rated it really liked it
Max, age 14, is a leading teenage magician skilled in the srt of escape. He learned his craft from his father, who mysteriously disappeared from a small Central American country 2 years ago. Max's mother was tried and convicted of his murder, even though a body has never been found. When Max receives a message that his father is alive, he travels to Santo Domingo to learn the truth. But the truth is hard to find in a country run by corrupt officials. Not everything gets solved at the end - look ...more
Erin
I liked this, and was swept away by the story, which was about a young escapologist whose mother is in jail for the murder of his father. Max gets swept up by a few mysterious clues, then goes on a dangerous hunt for the truth. The villains are nefarious, the women play lovely supporting roles, but Max himself is a little stiff and awkward. Beyond that, I enjoyed the tale and would imagine many readers would be anxious for the sequel.
Gary Sedivy
Aug 27, 2013 Gary Sedivy rated it liked it
It is a bummer, getting old (older than 19!) - because teenagers are obviously smarter than all the adults put together...
OK. I know it is youth fiction, written for kids. It's an acceptable adventure/detective story. Plenty of action, spills and thrills, danger, escapes, etc. The ending of the book was not an ending at all, but a cliff-hanger segue into the next book. Very little was solved, or resolved.
Is it worth reading book #2? Maybe, maybe not.
Carterkempgmail.Com
Mar 06, 2016 Carterkempgmail.Com rated it liked it
Shelves: adventure
Pretty good action adventure, similar to Horowitz's Adam Rider series. A fourteen year old boy works to find evidence that will exonerate his mom, who's in prison for the murder of his dad. Again, the teenager manages to avoid shooting or killing anyone directly, but there's plenty of violence happening all around him.
Leya
Jul 04, 2014 Leya rated it really liked it
This is kind of like another one of those Alex Rider or James Bond adventures.

Update (April 2016): So I guess I'm never going to finish this series because I can't find it anywhere in the public library. I don't really buy books so that is not an option for me. I really liked this series and I was so excited to read the next books but...that's not going to happen, sadly.
Barbara
Jun 22, 2010 Barbara rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Gr 5-9
We've had young spies, young James Bond, young Sherlock Holmes, young ninjas, young lawyers, but we didn't have a young magician... now we do. A good dramatic start with a death-defying water escape trick, followed by action and adventure across the globe. Definitely good reluctant reader material.
Hoover Public Library Kids and Teens
Houdini has nothing on Max Cassidy. At the age of fourteen, Max is already a world famous excape artist. He is also the only person looking to prove his mother's innocence. She was wrongly convicted of killing his father and only Max can follow the clues to uncover the truth.

Recommend for those who love a good adventure.
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Librarian's Note: There is more than one author with this name on Goodreads database.

Paul Adam has written eleven critically-acclaimed thrillers for adults. His books have sold widely around the world and have been translated into several foreign languages.

He is also the author of the Max Cassidy Series of thrillers for children.

Paul Adam has also written television and film scripts. He lives in
...more
More about Paul Adam...

Other Books in the Series

Max Cassidy (3 books)
  • Jaws of Death (Max Cassidy, #2)
  • Attack At Dead Man's Bay (Max Cassidy #3)

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