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3.73  ·  Rating details ·  291 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
When Ellie's parents are busted for possession of marijuana, the FBI gives her a choice: infiltrate the Mother Earth Defenders (MED), a radical environmental group, or her parents will go to jail. At first Ellie is more than willing to entrap the MEDics, but the more time she spends undercover, particularly with Coyote, the green-eyed MEDic that she can't stop thinking abo ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published March 5th 2009 by Putnam Juvenile (first published January 17th 2009)
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Hannah Bond
Some teenagers grow up being embarrassed from their parents and never want their friends to come over and associate with them. This is Ellie’s case in the book Torched by April Henry, a young adult fictional book, but much bigger. She is a sixteen year old girl who is in the process of trying to save her parents who got caught for selling marijuana. While also deal with her new boyfriend Coyote and her beliefs of what she believes is right.
In this book it starts out with Ellie’s parents being c
May 31, 2015 rated it it was ok
This book is surprisingly bad. It dissapointed from the moment I read the first page. The worst thing about it is how the author portrays the girl as a weak and in love at first sight. She is completely "in love" with a boy she practically just met. Not only that, he's a typical hippie who takes great pride in "sticking it to the Man". He gets in a lot of trouble with the law only to feel a little adrenaline rush. Basically, this book made me stressed out instead of being entertaining. I don't r ...more
May 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
I think this was one of April Henry's earlier books but I enjoyed it just as much as the others. She does a great job of creating mystery stories which are not too heavy and teens find enjoyable. This book was about a group of young adults who are protesting deforestation in an area which they have just noticed lynx have returned. Though most of the groups tactics are non-violent, there are members who have a different mindset about how they should act.

Ellie gets pulled into working for the FBI
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for

Ellie is the adopted daughter of a couple of old hippies. They love telling stories about their past as young rebels and spend their time looking out for new causes and smoking pot. It wasn't unusual, then, when members of MED, the Mother Earth Defenders, started hanging around in Ellie's living room. There were some fairly lively discussions and one pretty cute guy named Coyote.

When Ellie agreed to a couple of coffee shop dates wi
Justin Klotz
Nov 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
In “Torched” by April Henry, Ellie's aging hippie parents may be embarrassing at times, but she loves them and can't imagine life without them. When her parents are arrested for growing marijuana in their basement and threatened with lengthy jail time, Ellie is given a way to have the charges against her parents dropped. The FBI offers her a deal. They want her to spy on the Mother Earth Defenders or MEDics. The MEDics care about the earth and save animals that are becoming extinct. While these ...more
Cindy Hudson
Jan 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
Ellie is used to her parents having groups of friends over to smoke marijuana and get stoned. She often feels more like the parent than the child, cooking for the people who drop in and cleaning up when they leave. Otherwise she spends her time trying to do well in school. But when the FBI raids her home and arrests her parents for growing marijuana in their basement, she can’t go back to living life as she knew it.

The FBI most wants to find out about the activities of the Mother Earth Defenders
Sep 26, 2009 rated it liked it
Raised by hippie parents, Ellie is used to strangers coming into her doors and hearing about all the ways her parents are out to change the world. When the FBI comes a knockin', Ellie's life gets completely flipped. The voice of Ellie, her fears and her eagerness to make sure her parents don't end up in prison was written well and kept up with the suspense of what exactly the environmental activist group, MEDic, was really up to.

This is the first time I've read a book by April Henry, and for sus
Jul 20, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Robert Muchamore's CHERUB books
Shelves: 2009, teen
Ellie's aging hippie parents may be embarrasing at times, but she loves them and can't imagine life without them. When they're arrested for marijuana posession and threatened with lengthy jailtime for the marijuana field in their basement, Ellie is given a way out. The FBI offer her a deal. They want her to infiltrate a group of eradical nvironmental activists--the Mother Earth Defenders--and get evidence that they've moved beyond peaceful protests to violence.

Ellie is scared, but willing to do
Eric Rodricks
Apr 08, 2014 rated it liked it
I neither loved this book nor hated it. It was a very simple read with short chapters. The book is about a high school girl named Ellie also known as Sky. When Ellies parents get busted by the F.B.I. She has to go undercover to help them bust a group known as Mother Earth Defenders (Meds) To save her parents. As the story keeps on Ellie finds herself falling for a boy named coyote who is also a Med. Ellie also finds herself caught up in the wild world of the Meds, to prove herself she has to se ...more
Aug 29, 2009 rated it it was ok

Juvenile lit.

A teen of now middle-aged hippies gets involved with an activist (i.e., destructive) environmental group, to serve as an FBI informant and thus protect her parents from an arrest (for hosting social events where weed is used).

The teen has to deal simultaneously w. first love -- involving Coyote, a fellow member of the enviro group -- and hardened law enforcement people at the same time.

She ends up outsmarting the FBI (preserving evidence of the agents' lack of
Dec 08, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Ellie is sixteen and has parents who like to support environmental causes. Only problem is, one day her parents are arrested on marijuana charges and Ellie is forced to spy for the FBI and become involved in ecoterrorism or else--- Ellie will go into foster care and her parents would go to jail forever unless she goes undercover to help them. Ellie begins meeting with Mother Earth Defenders (MED); she has convinced them of her earnestness. She also begins to fall for Coyote, another member who h ...more
Jul 12, 2009 rated it it was ok
I'm disappointed that I bought multiple copies of this for the library based on reviews, and it just didn't do that much for me. The good: environmental issues are discussed in a way that might be palatable to teens. The bad: the environmental group featured in the book is becoming radical and potentially violent, so their causes seem marginalized. The mediocre: the suspense--will our heroine be able to get the goods on the Mother Earth Defenders for the FBI so her aging hippie parents won't go ...more
Nov 04, 2009 added it
Shelves: fiction, mystery
"I thought this was a great YA novel. Possibly more for girls than guys, due to the romance that was a secondary plot, but a lot of interesting commentary on the current environmental issues, and the ethics of protesting and direct action against the government/business/people.[return][return]Ellie was a very sympathetic character, fairly well fleshed out, interesting but not perfect. Relatable. A lot of them book actually deals with Ellie facing her fears - for her father's health, for the envi ...more
Read InAGarden
Jul 28, 2014 rated it liked it
After Ellie's parents are arrested for producing marijuana, the FBI makes a deal with Ellie - if she goes undercover with a seemingly radical environmental group (MED) they will let her parents off without jail time. Ellie is not thrilled about this arrangement but she goes along with it to save her parents. As she gets further enmeshed in MED she begins to understand their reasoning and beliefs and feels more aligned with them than the law enforcement agencies. But the FBI keeps telling her tha ...more
Feb 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
New young adult thriller by Portland author.

Update: Although it's hard to imagine the FBI telling a teen that she has to infiltrate a borderline terrorist environmental group, this is a good suspense/thriller for a young teen. To avoid having her parents go to jail for growing pot, Ellie must join the MEDics to keep the FBI informed of their covert activities. She is immediately attracted to one of the members, Coyote, but isn't sure she can continue when the group starts thinking of murder as a
Aniyah Payne
Jul 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I think that this book could be challenging for some to read because of bias. Some readers may have different opinions from what choices the characters make. This book has taught me that sometimes you have to risk your life to save others' but in the end, it will all workout. The book takes you on a ride from start to finish about a girl who puts herself into a dangerous group called the MEDics, only to save both her parents' lives and later to find out, her own as well. I totally recommend to y ...more
Jan 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
So I'm really glad that I read this book. I would have not had a reason before the Seasonal Reading Challenge to read this, or at least it wouldn't have become a priority. I picked it up at the library because it was on display as a book that was notable. I thought it was a good book for people who really care about the environment and want to make a difference. I also think it would be good for anyone who maybe doesn't think the environment is important. Although this is a fiction book, the eve ...more
Nov 30, 2013 rated it liked it
I thought the premise of the book was a good one-16 year old girl agrees to infiltrate a radical environmental group for the FBI in exchange for keeping her parents out of prison on drug charges. But some of the relationships between members of the group and a lot of the actions and dialogue of the FBI agents just felt false to me and didn't ring true at all. It was a quick read and I mostly enjoyed it, but I probably wouldn't recommend it to anyone.
Aug 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Great book! I loved it! This story starts off with the action but the back ground story comes along a you get further into the book and I absolutely loved it. One thing I love about April Henry's books is that the characters are really well developed. They seem like actual people and they way that the plot takes so many twists and turns, it always keeps me in the edge of my seat and I loved every page of the book!
Actual rating 2.5

Eh it was alright, definitely disappointing. The insta love had me rolling my eyes. And the story wasn't interesting enough, to keep me hooked. It makes me cringe to have to give an April Henry book such a low rating, but I have to be honest.

Overall 2.5/5
Romance 2/5
Suspense (none)
Sleeplessness 3/5
Apr 27, 2010 rated it it was ok
Although, this is a shorter work, it deals with some interesting issues, and looks at them from both sides. For example, they torch a hummer dealership, but the pollution they caused from the fire and the sales the dealership got as a result of the media sort of nixed the work they did. Some interesting questions to ask, but in the end kind of 'eh'.
May 20, 2009 rated it liked it
Ellie is forced into being a spy for the FBI to save her parents from going to jail on drug charges. She needs to join the MEDics (Mother Earth Defenders). She is asked to gather information as to where and when they will be staging their protest and if violence will be involved.
Apr 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
This book was beter than I expected it to be. Elei is a girl who has been adopted by a Hippie couple. When her parents get caught with weed the FBI forces her to go undercover to protect against domestic violence. This book contains an interesting twist that will keep you reading
Sep 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
Good book overall. There some places where I think the author could have provided more details but this is also considered to be a young adult book so I can understand the focus. I did enjoy it. It was interesting quick read that still managed to be thought provoking.
Feb 11, 2011 rated it liked it
Good story about a girl who gets involved with an environmental protection group in order to protect her foster parents from being in trouble. She "runs with this crowd", blowing up a car dealership, and other things. She realizes this group isn't so bad, until one member takes things too far.
Sep 25, 2013 rated it it was ok
Sometimes you just need some juvenile YA fiction. Just what the doctor ordered.
De'Andra Gaston
Sep 20, 2013 rated it liked it
It was ok. I found it predictable and alot like other books that I have read in the past. It wasn't really unique in that it has a theme of teens who fall in love, but it was ok
Oct 07, 2010 rated it it was ok
Pretty good for teen readers, but if you think they are ready for a little Ed Abbey, give them "The Monkey Wrench Gang" instead.
Apr 06, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
This was a fun, quick paced book. I loved the hippy parents, I could totally relate!
rated it did not like it
Jun 24, 2014
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I write mysteries and thrillers. I live in Portland, Oregon with my family.

If you've read one of my books, I would love to hear from you. Hearing from readers makes me eager to keep writing.

When I was 12, I sent a short story about a six-foot tall frog who loved peanut butter to Roald Dahl, the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He liked it so much he arranged to have it published in an
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