A Linc Baker Adventure by F. T. Bradley
Review: Sixth grader Lincoln "Linc" Baker just can't seem to help not getting in trouble. He sees a button, he feels a need to push it. He sees a lever, he feels a need to pull it. And he does just that on a field trip to a chicken farm … not realizing that the lever is connected to a device that opens all the cages at once. Being expelled from school as a result is one thing; having his family sued by the farmer for $1 million is another. But two government agents offer him a way out of his troubles, if he'll only agree to impersonate one of their youth agents who has gone missing, in Double Vision, the first spy adventure in this series for younger middle school readers by F. T. Bradley.
Benjamin Green has disappeared while on assignment in Paris, but his presence is critical for an exchange to take place. It turns out that Linc bears a striking resemblance to Ben, and the agents hope that that is enough to pull off the trade. Under the guise of having Linc attend a boot camp for youth offenders, a story no one that knows Linc doubts for a second, he's whisked off to Paris where he learns that he's to be involved in the trade of a second "Mona Lisa", one that has been hidden away for centuries. Things don't quite work out as planned, and soon Linc finds himself on the run with the daughter of the painting's guardian.
Told from the perspective of Linc and set largely in Paris, Double Vision has an exciting, action-packed storyline that is sure to thrill and delight its intended audience of readers, both boys and girls. In addition to Linc getting out of trouble by using his natural curiosity and wits — now that's a change for him, when these traits are typically what get him into trouble — there are codes and ciphers that need to be solved along the way. There are also a number of "doubles" that are cleverly weaved into the story: Linc and Ben, who double for each other; the two paintings, a good and evil "Mona Lisa" by Leonardo da Vinci; and — slight spoiler — double agents and double crosses. The book ends with a promise of more to come: "[L]et me tell you," says Linc, "it made the Paris mission seem like a kindergarten field trip."
As of the date of this review, no Lexile measure has been assigned to this book. The publisher recommends the book for readers aged 8 to 12.
Acknowledgment: the author provided a copy of Double Vision for this review.
Review Copyright © 2013 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Location(s) referenced in Double Vision: California; Paris, France
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Double Vision by F. T. Bradley — A Linc Baker Adventure
Publication Date: October 2012
List Price: $16.99