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Al Capone Throws Me a Curve: 03/04/19
Al Capone Throws Me a Curve by Gennifer Choldenko is what feels like the conclusion of the Al Capone at Alcatraz series. Moose wants to play baseball on the high school team in San Francisco but to do that he needs to make time to ride the ferry from Alcatraz where he lives because his father is a guard.
But things are complicated for him further because he has to watch his autistic older sister and the warden's danger loving daughter, Piper. Putting Piper and Natalie together away from parental supervision is sure to bring trouble.
These books all follow the same sort of recipe. First there's stuff about life on the island. Then there are San Franciscans not believing Moose (in all fairness, many from the City can't imagine life outside of the City). Then there is some contrived interaction between Moose, his friends, and the inmates (preferably Al Capone). Finally there is some crisis involving Natalie and an awkward reminder of her age vs her abilities.
The problem is that nothing changes. Moose's parents remain as stuck in their preconceived notions of how their family works and complete denial that it's not in fact working. Moose who continues to not know how to say no to people. There's Natalie who more and more reads like a caricature of an autistic person.
The short version is that the first book was both fun and fascinating. The last book isn't but might have been if it had been the only one I had read.