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The Dead Gentleman
Cover of The Dead Gentleman
The Dead Gentleman
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A many-worlds adventure novel from the acclaimed author of Powerless!

The Dead Gentleman is a wild ride between parallel New York City timestreams—1901 and today. Eleven-year-old Tommy Learner is a street orphan and an unlikely protégé of the Explorers, a secret group dedicated to exploring portals—the hidden doorways to other worlds. But in the basement of an old hotel, his world collides with that of modern-day Jezebel Lemon.
Now, Jezebel and Tommy must thwart the Dead Gentleman, a legendary villain whose last unconquered world is our own planet Earth, a realm where the dead stay dead—for now. Can two kids put an end to this ancient evil and his legions of Grave Walkers?
A many-worlds adventure novel from the acclaimed author of Powerless!

The Dead Gentleman is a wild ride between parallel New York City timestreams—1901 and today. Eleven-year-old Tommy Learner is a street orphan and an unlikely protégé of the Explorers, a secret group dedicated to exploring portals—the hidden doorways to other worlds. But in the basement of an old hotel, his world collides with that of modern-day Jezebel Lemon.
Now, Jezebel and Tommy must thwart the Dead Gentleman, a legendary villain whose last unconquered world is our own planet Earth, a realm where the dead stay dead—for now. Can two kids put an end to this ancient evil and his legions of Grave Walkers?
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  • Kindle Book
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Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.7
  • Lexile:
    860
  • Interest Level:
    MG
  • Text Difficulty:
    4 - 5

Recommended for you

Excerpts-
  • Chapter ONE CHAPTER ONE

    Jezebel

    New York City, Today

    At first glance, the Percy Luxury was a sleek apartment building full of marble floors and shining brass handles. A neatly dressed doorman always waited outside to wave down taxis and tip his hat at passersby, and the smiling elevator man with too-white teeth never had to be reminded which floor was yours. But the marble and the brass were not the originals, and neither were the doorman and the elevator man for that matter—they were all part of a new renovation aimed at transforming the place into a stylish home for the very rich and the very snotty. "New" Percy had been "gentrified"—a word that, in Jezebel's vernacular, meant it was now a good place to own a poodle or some other small, yappy dog that you could stuff into your purse.

    Jezebel's Percy was full of peepholes and cracked-open doors. No one said much of anything, she noticed, and each neighbor made a point of seeming totally uninterested as they passed her in the halls—head down, busy examining the mail, no time for a "hello" or "good morning" or even "hiya" when you're staring at your watch. But as soon as they made it inside their apartments, you could hear the click-clack of peephole shutters sliding and the creak of doors inching open. Walking down the hallway meant you were being watched, and if you were being watched, then it only made sense that you were being talked about.

    Snobs.

    According to Jez's dad it had been a hotel long ago. Its status as an Upper West Side landmark was the only thing that saved it from being torn down when the coffee shops and pay-by-the-hour playrooms started moving into the neighborhood. But the renovations had also exposed part of the real Percy—sections of the old building that remained untouched by double-glazed windows and new crown molding. Underneath the new clothing was a set of very old bones.

    On this particular Saturday it was not yet noon, though you wouldn't have known it to look at the sky outside. A thick pallet of black clouds lay over the city like a winter blanket. Sidewalk trees—skinny little saplings planted as part of the gentrification—swayed then snapped in the gusting winds. Jezebel watched out her bedroom window as the storm pummeled the city and churned the waters of the Hudson River beyond. She imagined the tall trees in Riverside Park whipping their branches against the blowing rain, cutting through the sheets of water. The park trees were old and strong, and they would do better in this gale than those poor saplings below.

    Jezebel's bedroom window rattled as a thunderclap chased a lightning flash through the sky. That one had seemed too close. She backed away from the window and plopped down heavily onto her bed. Even an epic thunderstorm like this could hold her attention for only so long. She rolled around, sat up and grabbed one of her dad's books that she had started at least ten times. She read for a few minutes before giving up at the same spot she always gave up at, and then laid back down and stared at the unfinished mural her father had started on her bedroom wall. It was a scene from an enchanted forest full of lush green trees, toadstools and fairies. She stared at the open white space he'd taped off that was just begging for a unicorn.

    Her dad had to be stopped.

    Of course, he meant well—parents usually do. These little gestures reassured him that he was an involved and present father. Jezebel's mom liked to say that fatherhood had hit him like a knockout punch and he'd been reeling ever since. But he'd done what was expected of him, and then some. He'd made...

About the Author-
  • MATTHEW CODY divides his time between writing and teaching college English in New York City. Powerless, his first novel, is available from Knopf.

    Originally from the midwest, Matthew lives with his wife and young son in Manhattan. You can visit him on the Web at www.matthewcody.com.

Reviews-
  • DOGO Books legoguy - This book is good.
  • School Library Journal

    March 1, 2012

    Gr 5-9-This complex, time-bending tale is told in alternating chapters. Tommy Learner tells about his adventures, which begin in New York in 1900, where he is a street child who supports himself by stealing. When he takes a magical metal bird from a man with the face of a corpse, he finds himself pursued by monsters and rescued by the Explorers' Society, a group that traverses magical worlds by traveling through time and space. After the living corpse, the Dead Gentleman of the title, attacks the Explorers, Tommy finds himself trapped and alone. Jezebel Lemon's chapters are told in third person. She is a contemporary girl who encounters Tommy's ghost in the basement of her apartment building and soon becomes aware of the many monsters and magical creatures that surround her otherwise-ordinary life. Tommy and Jez meet and realize that they must work together to save themselves, Merlin the magical bird, and Earth itself from the villain's schemes. Truly creepy monsters and nightmare figures, from the body-swapping Dead Gentleman to his vampire first lieutenant to a zombie dinosaur, bring a gripping sense of danger to the story, and real questions about the consequences of changing time add substance to the rapid action. Readers will be drawn into this story and challenged to follow its characters as they jump through time and fight to save us all.-Beth L. Meister, Milwaukee Jewish Day School, WI

    Copyright 2012 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Booklist

    February 1, 2012
    Grades 5-8 Two young New Yorkers from different eras unite to save the world from an invasion of zombies led by an elegant, corpse-wearing darkling. Shuttling among worlds, times, and points of view, Cody chronicles the recruitment of Tommy, a street urchin from 1901, into a wormhole-traveling Explorer's Society menaced by the powerful and mysterious Dead Gentleman. Guided by a device that can peer through time, Tommy contacts 12-year-old Jezebel a century into his future and tasks her with protecting an enigmatic clockwork bird that holds the key to the Gentleman's ability to conquer our planet. Despite all the quick changes and fortuitous coincidences, readers will enjoy watching the two quarreling protagonists take on zombies and other creepy-crawlies on the way to a fiery, if inconclusive, air battle over the Hudson River. Chucking in elements of steampunk, Jules Verne, and Edgar Rice Burroughs along with vampires, three-armed aliens, inscrutable monks, closet monsters, and even dinosaurs, Cody pays tribute to classic adventure authors and genres here as he dishes up an exciting time-travel tale.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2012, American Library Association.)

  • Ransom Riggs, NYT bestselling author of MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN

    "Expertly imagined and endlessly inventive, Matthew Cody's The Dead Gentleman is a time-tripping adventure readers won't soon forget."

  • Pseudonymous Bosch "Attention thieves, scoundrels, and fearless adventurers! This book is for you. From the underground lairs of monsters and trolls to the underwater ruins of ancient civilizations, The Dead Gentleman will take you everywhere you ever wanted to go--and more than a few places you never imagined. Read it now. Read it fast. Before some well-meaning person snatches it away."
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    Random House Children's Books
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The Dead Gentleman
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