The Stanley family is moving to Italy! David, Janie, and twins Esther and Blair are thrilled. But their moody stepsister Amanda, thwarted from spending time in California with her father, spends the trip alternately moping or boasting about how rich her father is. And precocious Janie translates everything Amanda says to all the neighbors.
But such bragging does not go unnoticed. One terrible night, the children are kidnapped. David tries to make friends with the kidnappers to protect his family. But that’s hard to do when Janie lectures them on how to write a ransom note and Esther complains about the terrible food. Can David and Amanda use their siblings’ hijinks to outsmart the kidnappers?
This classic novel by Zilpha Keatley Snyder is by turns exciting, hilarious, and scary as it follows the plight of these rambunctious siblings.
Zilpha Keatley Snyder is the author of The Egypt Game, The Headless Cupid, and The Witches of Worm, all Newbery Honor Books. Her most recent books include The Treasures of Weatherby, The Bronze Pen, William S. and the Great Escape, and William’s Midsummer Dreams. She lives in Mill Valley, California. Visit her at ZKSnyder.com.