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The Last Last-Day-of-Summer

(A Legendary Alston Boys Adventure)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  658 ratings  ·  168 reviews
When two adventurous cousins accidentally extend the last day of summer by freezing time, they find the secrets hidden between the unmoving seconds, minutes, and hours are not the endless fun they expected.

Otto and Sheed are the local sleuths in their zany Virginia town, masters of unraveling mischief using their unmatched powers of deduction. And as the summer winds down
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published April 2nd 2019 by Versify
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Kim As of the late August day when this book takes place, Otto is eleven, turning twelve in November. We aren't told exactly how old Sheen is, but the cou…moreAs of the late August day when this book takes place, Otto is eleven, turning twelve in November. We aren't told exactly how old Sheen is, but the cousins are referred to as being in the same grade (they share a classmate who was eleven in the spring), so Sheen is probably already twelve or, like Otto, turning twelve later in the year.(less)

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Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  658 ratings  ·  168 reviews

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Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
The book was a short fun read where cousins Otto and Sheed, the legendary Alston boys who have saved the town many a time with their heroics, came across Mr. Flux and his magic camera which literally stopped time. The boys had to work double time to get to the bottom of this mystery and free the people who were frozen in time.

My first book by Lamar Giles, it was exciting in some parts, the characters Otto and Sheed were well etched. They were enthusiastic and bright. There were a few illustratio
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We often say we need diverse books, and that diversity is necessary not only in racial representation but also in variety of stories we tell. And to this end we have the adventures of Sheed and Otto in The Last Day of Summer.

REVIEW👉🏿Sheed and Otto are amateur sleuths in their small town and each time they help solve a town mystery they are awarded a key to the city. And in this latest challenge, time has been manipulated to the point to where it has been frozen leaving the town in flux. The cou
Alex  Baugh
Jun 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
It's the last day of summer in the rather strange town of Fry in equally strange Logan County, Virginia and Otto (Octavius) Alston is up early and wants to make the most of it. Maybe even have such an awesome adventure solving a big enough problem that the mayor would award the Legendary Alston Boys a third key to the city, especially now that he's just learned that the Epic Ellisons - twins Wiki and Leen - just received their third key. Unfortunately, his cousin Sheed (Rasheed) Alston isn't qui ...more
Sofiya Pasternack
What I Liked
Otto and Sheed are wonderful to follow along and read about. Their list of maneuvers is hilariously long! The notes Otto keeps in his notebook cracked me up too!

Entry #36: We froze time.
Entry #37: Sheed might be upset.

The whole adventure is very imaginative. I loved all the names for the different time people. There is even some heartwarming stuff in there (which I'm pretty sure is a spoiler, so I'm not going to include it!).

What I Would Have Liked to See
I had an ARC so it was printe
Kellee Moye
What a fun book! Let me count the ways: 1) robots; 2) time travel; 3) mysterious evil person; 4) giant platypus-like creatures; 5) flying cars; 6) giant fly paper; 7) monsters trapped in mirrors; 8) frozen time; etc. etc. So much is going on in this book that makes it so engaging. Take all of this and pair it with a cousin team who solve mysteries in their slightly-off county that now have the fate of everyone they know and love on their shoulders, and you have a book that is going to be a favor ...more
Unfortunately, this has ended up in my "tried to read and just couldn't finish it" category. I read the first 100 pages hoping it would catch my interest and it just never picked up for me. It feels like this book is part of a series and I picked up the middle book. It keeps referring to all of these things and adventures the boys have had which probably would have provided a more solid foundation to build on. Instead I just felt a little lost and was constantly trying to figure out what was goi ...more
Nov 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fantastic, fantastical story! So many twists and turns in this time-travel adventure led by cousins Otto and Sheed, who use their unique talents to try and save the day when time goes haywire in their town. The boys are lovable from the very first chapter, and all of the characters (from the grandma to unexpected creatures to a pair of rival twin girls) jump off the page with tons of voice and heart. Kids are going to want to read this one again and again, especially black kids, who'll fi ...more
Theresa Milstein
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This a was fun read. It reminded me of Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth, but in a way that's truly Giles's own. I liked the realistic friendship between the two cousins. I also liked some surprises near the end that I didn't see coming.
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm working to build a diverse library for my 5th grade students. This book would be a great addition!
Emily Waller
Jun 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed this quirky read from Lamar Giles. There’s a lot of playfulness in his writing and in the story, and I loved the illustrations and note entries that were paired with the story. There were so many wacky parts of the story, but it totally worked. I hope we get to see Otto and Sheed’s next adventure!

Otto and Sheed are cousins in Logan County...a place known for its weirdness. The cousins are frequently called to save the county from dangers and other wacky things that happen. This story beg
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There are books that you read that you just can’t wait to reread and there are books that you read that you can’t wait to reread to someone.

This one is the latter.

I love this book; it’s an instant classic. I want to read a chapter to a child every night— it’s the perfect adventure story to read someone to sleep with.

I love this book and now I have to buy it and give it to someone so they can love it, too. Thanks Otto and Sheed for taking me on your summer adventure with you.
Shelle Perry
It is the last Monday in August. School is about to start and cousins Otto and Sheed are determined to do something special on this, the last day of summer. Adventure finds them as a photo taken with a camera from a mysterious stranger puts the entire town in a time freeze. These two resourceful tweens set out to make things right with the help of some out of ordinary, not to mention extraordinary, characters they meet along the way.

This story is the weird and clever of Gravity Falls meets Phine
Casey Jo
Feb 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is a pleasure from page one when Sheed and Otto encounter an ACK-ronym!

As billed, it's a bit Phantom Tollbooth, with the anthropomorphized concepts like "A.M" and "P.M," and (view spoiler) But it also gets into the heart of boy friendships and jealousy and feeling the need to prove oneself. And has a cartoon feel, a la Powerpuff Girls.

I read an ARC, and excited to see the artwork in the final. And hurray
May 12, 2019 marked it as didn-t-finish
Too much going on and not enough character development for me to stay engaged in the audio. Perhaps I will give the print version a go in the near future.
Jul 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, j, funny
Rollicking adventure! Time travel! Plucky duo(s!)! Weird setting! There's a freaking map in the front of this book! Ownvoices! Super weird giant monsters! Originality! FUN!

I mean really. This book. So good.

This book was so much FUN To Read. It's about these kids (who apparently already have a reputation in their town) who accidentally (sorta) freeze the town in time. So only they can rescue their community!

One of my favorite bits in this book is about the The Eternal Creek which runs to one si
Tasha (Amaysn Reads)
Oct 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I can't believe that this book wasn't on my radar! This is an nonsensical adventure story that follows two cousins, Otto and Sheed, in their weird town of Fry in Logan County, where strangeness is a way of life. An adventure story, staring two Black boys, grief isn't the center of it, they just get to go about solving mysteries, annihilating magical creatures, and gaining notoriety as the best detectives in the city!! Yes this delivers all of that. I hope that this series goes on for a long time ...more
Nov 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Otto and Sheed are an adventurous duo. Learning to be an individual why working together can be hard when you feel unnoticed. Otto had to learn it isn't always about HIM, and that others can make good decisions as well. This was a good mix of fiction and the supernatural. Once I got into the story, I couldn't put it down.
Aug 12, 2020 rated it liked it
A modern version of The Phantom Tollbooth, with two Black boys -- cousins and best friends -- serving as the heroic questers. (It also reminded me of Buffy, in the way that these "normal" kids are constantly saving their town from otherworldly disasters.) My favorite part was when a high school yearbook was used to deliver sage guidance.
Laura Hoyler
Jul 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
I normally do not like science fiction, but this was not over the top, and I really enjoyed the characters!
Tori Darland
The book wasn’t too bad, a little weird: I did Not Finnish on pg:29
Ms. Yingling
E ARC from Netgalley

Cousins Otto and Sheed (aka The Legendary Alston Boys) live with their grandmother in Logan County, where they have lots of adventures involving dealing with the odd bits of magic found in their area. They have even won the key to the city twice, even though they have a rival in the Ellison twins for solving problems. On the last day of summer, they are ready to have another adventure, and Otto is making notes about the best prospects. When they are given a camera and have an
Jul 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: together-reading
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 07, 2019 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book because many of my 4th/5th grade students were so excited to read it. Unfortunately, a few chapters in it was almost unreadable. Otto and Sheed are likable, adventurous brothers, but there is little to no character development. There is so much action jammed in every page, paragraph, and sentence it feels forced, with no discernible plot to cling to. To me reading this book felt like being stuck in the theater watching a bad kids movie and you really want to leave but ...more
Jenna (Falling Letters)
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Review originally published 30 March 2019 at Falling Letters. I received a free copy from the publisher via Netgalley.

The Last Last-Day-of-Summer introduces readers to cousins Otto and Sheed, established legends in their unusual county. The boys own two Keys to City for their services in investigating and resolving the extraordinarily ordinary happenings around their small town. (The keys live next to other souvenirs like a lock of banshee hair.) The story explores their friendship primarily fro
May 08, 2019 added it
Shelves: read-in-2019
This took me a while to read because it is not my favorite type of book. However, there are a lot of great things about it. It reminds me a bit of The Phantom Tollbooth, and I liked the characters. It was particularly great that the boys were having an adventure and experiences that were fun and not focused solely on race. It’s a very appealing book and I hope it finds an audience!
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
A very different perspective of a,story with children playing with the test of time wanting more of their lives. We have always been fans of misfits out to g their crazy minds together coming up with brilliant plans to have it be summer vacation forever but they always focus on the positive side and never the risky side where time will be changed and maybe gone forever and everyone will be non existent. This was goonies meets a time machine and such an enjoyable read.

Thank you Netgalley and the
Jul 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: young scientists and inventors (and anyone who likes adventures)

Charming end-of-summer time-stopping, time-travelling adventures with a bunch of clever kids from a small town that seems even more interesting and way more fun than Nightvale. Think Phineas and Ferb but without all the singing. I really hope this is the first volume of a series, but, even if it isn't, this is a perfect, stand-alone, family summer-road-trip read especially for middle grade ages. HIGHLY RE
I'm not much for magical realism but I really enjoyed this book. I liked the dynamics between cousins Sheed and Otto. The characters were realistic, even given the unrealistic plot of fighting off monsters and robots, and freezing time of course. I also liked the fact that the characters were diverse. I see this book being popular in my library. I'd hand this to a 4th or 5th grader looking for a light adventure story.
Nov 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
*I received this ARC from the publisher at NYCC*

This story was so much more than just 2 kids solving a mystery! I think kids will enjoy the time freezing magical parts of it, but I hope they will also appreciate the parts that deal with the relationships between all the characters and the importance of following your dreams even if others belittle them.
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Lamar "L. R." Giles writes books for teens and adults. FAKE ID, his debut Young Adult Thriller, will be published by HarperCollins in 2014. He is represented by Jamie Weiss Chilton of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency and resides in Chesapeake, VA with his wife.

Other books in the series

A Legendary Alston Boys Adventure (2 books)
  • The Last Mirror on the Left

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