Collin Fischer isn’t considered an average 14 year old. For one, he’s extremely intelligent and knows all sorts of fascinating facts about a wide variety of subjects. And two, he has Asperger’s syndrome, a neurological condition related to Autism. Colin has lots of trouble in social situations, can’t stand to be touched and freaks out at loud noises. However, Colin is considered highly functional and has done so well with his therapy that he’s braving mainstream high school all on his own. For added support, he’s armed with his Notebook to write down his vast observations on the bizarre world of human behavior (especially interesting at the high school level) and his essays on topics that interest him. He’s also fortified with his emotional cheat sheet, a list of hand-drawn faces depicting all arrays of human emotions to help him figure out how others are feeling. But even equipped with all of these tools to cope, he still can’t escape a toilet swirly on the first day of high school from his longtime nemesis, Wayne Connelly.
"COLIN FISCHER is an exceptionally unusual and intriguing novel with a riveting and rather untraditional main character...[Ashley Edward Miller and Zack Stentz] also incorporate quite a few relevant themes for today’s teens, including bullying, guns at school and confronting personal hurdles and goals, plus enlightening the world to Asperger’s syndrome."
Then something truly interesting, and dangerous, happens at school: a gun goes off in the busy cafeteria. Fortunately, no one is hurt, but who would be stupid enough to bring a gun to school? Everyone is talking about it, but Colin decides to actually do something. Just like his hero, Sherlock Holmes, Colin is on the case!
The school’s number one suspect is Wayne Connelly. You would think that Colin would be ecstatic to have the bully permanently expelled from school, but that is just not how Colin operates. And when Colin finds evidence that proves Wayne innocent (at least in this case), Colin convinces Wayne to help him find the real culprit. And the real culprit better watch out because Colin is one determined detective!
Ashley Edward Miller and Zack Stentz make an amazing writing team. Having already tacked the movies, X-Men: First Class and Thor, they decided to give the young adult literary world a try and nailed it with five stars! COLIN FISCHER is an exceptionally unusual and intriguing novel with a riveting and rather untraditional main character. Colin maintains a fairly unique outlook on life, oftentimes making unintentionally humorous observations. For example, at one point he is referencing a Native American tribe proven to practice cannibalism. Colin states he doesn’t quite understand cannibalism because he has enough trouble just kissing his grandmother! The writing team also offers another untraditional cast member in presenting Colin’s Notebook as a sort of character, even capitalizing its name and providing it with almost an entity of its own.
The writers take another unusual path in utilizing essay entries at the chapter beginnings and tossing in footnotes for additional (and fascinating) information. They also incorporate quite a few relevant themes for today’s teens, including bullying, guns at school and confronting personal hurdles and goals, plus enlightening the world to Asperger’s syndrome. All of this good stuff, plus it’s completely loads of fun! COLIN FISCHER is an intriguing success and fans will be begging these talented writers for more of Colin Fischer!
Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman on October 31, 2012