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by James Grippando
Lending Library Number: 94
Leapholes is the fascinating story of Ryan Coolidge, a boy who hates middle school and who is in the worst kind of trouble—trouble with the law. The one person who can help Ryan is a mysterious old, African-American lawyer named Hezekiah. Hezekiah may have magical powers, or he may have the most elaborate computerized law library ever conceived. Either way, together, Ryan and Hezekiah do their legal research by zooming through "leapholes," physically entering the law books, and coming face-to-face with actual people from some of our nation's most famous cases—like Rosa Parks and Dred Scott—who will help Ryan defend himself in court.
Leapholes is time travel with a legal twist, where law books and important legal precedents come to life. Though a work of fiction, all of the cases woven into the Leapholes storyline are actual and important cases from American legal history. For example, the U.S. Supreme Court's decision that slaves are property, not people, appears at Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857).
Packed with the pacing and suspense of a legal thriller, Leapholes is so historically accurate and conveys such a keen understanding of basic legal concepts that it gained the enthusiastic backing of the American Bar Association.
Leapholes includes a very special Afterword in which two dozen top lawyers and lawyer/authors—from David Baldacci to Dick Thornburgh—tell children in their own words what inspired them to become a lawyer. Famous trial lawyer David Boies, for example, tells how he overcame dyslexia to become a skilled debater and renowned courtroom orator. The book also includes discussion questions for the classroom.
Young readers will find Leapholes to be just as much of a page-turner as Grippando's adult books. And the book is a fun way to literally get inside the law, and to learn that "[e]very single case reported in every last one of these books is a piece of someone's life."