THE DEFENSE OF THADDEUS A. LEDBETTER, by John Gosselink (Amulet Oct. 2010)(ages 10+). Seventh-grader Thaddeus A. Ledbetter has a problem: like his recently deceased father (an efficiency expert), he knows that you should work "harder, not smarter." But no one will listen to his plans for improving their lives and the state of the school and Principal Cooper is particularly obtuse.
When Thaddeus's "true emergency drill" goes bad, he's sentenced to In-School Suspension for the rest of the school year. It wasn't his fault, though, that no one else takes disaster preparedness seriously.
Told in journal entries and e-mails and discipline referral forms, DEFENSE hilariously recounts Thaddeus's disciplinary issues over the course of the school year and his attempts to mitigate the unfair and dire punishment. A funny, terrific read for the smart kid and smart alec in everyone.