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Camp Shady Crook

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  71 ratings  ·  27 reviews
It’s Ocean’s Eleven set in a summer camp as two kids try to one-up each other in a con competition at a camp that isn’t quite what it seems…

For Archie, the start of summer means another stint at Camp Shady Brook, where there is a lot more to the camp than meets the eye—just like Archie and his now blended family. But thanks to a con Archie developed last year, he’s finally
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published May 21st 2019 by Aladdin
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Average rating 3.66  · 
Rating details
 ·  71 ratings  ·  27 reviews

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Apr 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Camp Shady Crook is a very shady, and adventurous camp story, set in a run down dump for a camp! Archie and Vivian compete for the rights to hustle the other campers. According to Archie, the number one tip for pulling off a con... know your mark.
They both get in over their head in a hustle that’s bigger than they intended. Eventually the two team up together to fix a lot of wrongs in the camp and agree to put their cons behind them.
First of all, I love camp stories, but this story was so uniq
Betsie Bush
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Entertaining. I liked how there was no romance implied between any of the characters. Kids sometimes really are just friends with each other. Some of the shenanigans were unrealistic, but the characters grew and that's what is important to me.

I think there was one character name inconsistency. The camp nurse was referred to as Jack and Nick at different points in the story, but it isn't a deal-breaker.
Lois Sepahban
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky to read an ARC of Camp Shady Crook by Lee Gjertsen Malone.

I really loved this book--summer camp, an epic rivalry, appealing characters. It hit all the right notes for me.

I can't wait to order a copy for my middle school classroom library.
Resch Reads
May 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
*Book Received in Exchange for Honest Opinion/Review*

I am kind of ashamed to admit how long it took me to read this book but alas I started it 10 days ago! I just finished this afternoon and let me just start off by saying the first two-thirds of the book is slow. I can't quite put my finger on it but the pacing of the story is off. I felt like the synopsis set me up for a summer of prank wars and cons but that didn't exactly resonate in the story.

We are given a lot of details, the world buildi
Jenn Bishop
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Nothing like spending a cold winter day escaping into a summer read. CAMP SHADY CROOK reminds me of the best of Louis Sachar: crisp, memorable characters, witty writing, and a distinctive setting. Camp Shady Crook is the best and worst of every camp I attended as a kid, but more than that, it's larger than life, and so are the two kids at its center: Archie the grifter and Vivian his competitor. In short chapters alternating between the two tweens, we see the stakes rise as they battle it out fo ...more
Ms. Yingling
Mar 17, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Archie is glad to be returning to Camp Shady Brook on a scholarship, because it is six weeks that he doesn't have to deal with his stepmother and twin half siblings, and time when he can manage to fleece the wealthy camp goers, since his name is the same as one of the richest men in the area. Vivian is not happy to be going to camp, since this is the first time she has not accompanied her travel agent parents on their summer tours, but an unfortunate incident at school c
Nannette Demmler
May 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
ARC provided by Simon and Schuster via NetGalley for an honest review.

This was a pretty fun read. I enjoyed the characters and the plot, although the end was a little over the top.

Archie was such a solid character. At home he has issues with his family, at school, typical kid stuff. But when he gets to camp he puts on this new persona, but he is still Archie underneath. His cons are pretty simple and the ones we see do work, but he does have some strict rules about who he cons, not the poor sc
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to snag an ARC of this book!

In this super fun camp story, Archie Drake spends 6 weeks of every summer at Camp Shady Brook. It's an overstrict, run-down, poor excuse for a camp (not-so-fondly called Camp Shady Crook), but Archie has discovered the good side, too. Not only can he escape his unpopular, invisible self from back home, but he has discovered a talent for conning kids (only the rich ones) out of some of their spending cash. And it doesn't hurt that he happens to share
Valerie McEnroe
ARC from Netgalley

Adult rating: 4 stars
Kid rating: 5 stars

Who wouldn't jump at the chance to re-invent himself? To be the person everyone admires? Archie and Vivian plan to do just that at Camp Shady Brook. Archie is a seasoned veteran, returning for his third summer. He uses the fact that he shares a name with a famous, unrelated billionaire to his advantage. Vivian is new at camp and dreading every minute of it. She's not good at making friends, but she shares something in common with Archie.
Robin Yardi
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The set-up of this book is one of delicious wickedness: practiced kid conman, Archie Drake, and budding trickster, Vivian Cheng, come head to head at Camp Shady Brook. The are they accomplices, archenemies, or friends is a fun narrative dynamic told in alternating POV chapters that keep the story moving. Just like the character Archie Drake likes to read about famous cons and heists, I think kid readers will eat up Archie and Vivian’s escapades swindling fellow campers out of their summer spendi ...more
Apr 06, 2020 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 01, 2020 rated it liked it
I'm halfway finished, but I don't think I'm going to press on. I'm just not engaged with the characters. The writing is fine. The premise is unique and was intriguing, but I just can't get into it. I keep thinking up others things to do rather than read it, and I think it's because I just don't care about the characters at all. I get that the author has to give them an arc, but if the starting point for these characters is that they're conning other kids because they're bored and angry about stu ...more
Cynthia Reeg
May 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Troubled middle school students, Archie and Vivian, meet at Camp Shady Brook and soon discover a shared love of conning other campers. Archie tries to teach Vivian his techniques mainly in an effort to keep her under control, even as she pulls a con on him. The cons keep coming as the notoriously nasty camp grows ever more mildewed and overgrown and the campers grow ever more discontented. But when a con goes dramatically wrong, Archie and Vivian, finally see the error of their ways and attempt ...more
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
[I received an electronic review copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.]

A fun heist/con story set at a rundown summer camp. I love heist/con stories when there's a compelling reason for the con. At the start, Archie and Vivian don't really have a reason other than "Because we can." It makes it hard to like them early on in the story. But when their feud blows up in their faces, they discover they are better together. The ending made me want to stand up and
Dec 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Kids from all over the United States each year to go to Camp Sandy Crook for a week to experience the Great outdoors instead of being manipulated by screens infront of you . This year Archie Drake seems to be the big boss over there controlling everyone . He acts as if he is a millionaire . Can Archie Drake keep this act up or will he fall ?
Apr 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a great book for Middle Grade Readers! Camp Shady Crook is a fun, adventurous story of 2 kids' experience at camp and their budding friendship. I love that this book has main characters of both genders, that their friendship crosses those sometimes rigid gender lines. I look forward to recommending this book to young readers!

Molly French
Apr 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Camp Shady Crook is a fun read for middle aged readers. It is adventurous, funny and clever, and it makes you feel like you are living inside of its pages. Highly recommend this to readers looking for an funny book with a creative plot.
3.5 A fun read with boy/girl POV about 2 rival campers at a summer camp conning other kids out of their spending $. It’s a got a real Camp Nowhere vibe and perfect for fans of Under Locker and Key by Allison Hymas and Fourth Stall by Chris Rylander
May 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
EARC from Edelweiss Plus
This summer camp story had me hooked! It is a good suggestion for students who enjoyed the Terrible Two series.
Jan 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I think fans of Stuart Gibbs or Ponti's TOAST series would LOVE this one. Really funny, with some great "cons." Love the dynamic between the two main characters. ...more
Oct 20, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2020-new
Aug 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
An enjoyable read about friendship and being true to yourself.
Dec 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
Fun read for kids who like to read books with high jinx. However, I had trouble connecting with the characters.
Jun 24, 2019 rated it liked it
An enjoyable light read, although a bit slow in the first half. Less snarky than Terrible Two and less complicated than Great Greene Heist. Good for grades 3-5.
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Very compelling.
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Nobody?
Shelves: dnf-or-skim
DNF for Camp Shady Crook. Annoying main characters, difficult-to-read style, and a little confusing.
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