Mystery of the Phantom Heist
This mystery novel by Franklin W. Dixon is the second in the " Hardy Boys Adventures" series published by Aladdin, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division.
Mystery of the Phantom Heist is written for kids ages 8 to 12 years. The age range reflects readability and not necessarily content appropriateness.
Crude or Profane Language
Drug and Alcohol Content
Other Negative Elements
Teenager Frank Hardy and his younger brother, Joe, have been following in the footsteps of their detective father since they were 7 and 8 years old. Despite all the crimes they've solved in their hometown of Bayport, the police and their parents have forced them into retirement. They keep themselves busy by hanging out at the Chomp and Chew diner with their friend Chet. They learn the wealthy Lindsey Peyton of rival school Bayport Academy is having an over-the-top sweet 16 party. Knowing there will be good food and girls present, they apply to work as waiters. When snobby Lindsey rejects Chet for the job, the boys all leave. On their way out, they see that Lindsey's fancy car has been keyed with the words Rich Witch. Later, the police question the boys in conjunction with the vandalism.
There's an increase in vandalism in Bayport, and most of it is going viral. Someone called slickbro13 is posting videos on YouTube chronicling the pranks pulled by a gang called Scaredevils. The Hardys find the video of Lindsey's car being keyed, as well as Dumpster tippings, the throwing of rocks through windows, and later, more serious acts of violence. The boys learn that Colin Sylvester, who has been spurned by Lindsey for years and whose father is a mega-rich cruise ship magnate, is slickbro13. He's been hiring the less-wealthy kids from the Hardys' high school to pull pranks for him.
Frank and Joe share their findings with the authorities, but Police Chief Olaf gives little credence to the Hardys' accusations and theories. He dislikes the young detectives, and Colin's father is a big donor to the Bayport Police charity. As Frank and Joe try to get evidence to prove their case, the violence and vandalism become personal. A flying rock thrown through the Chomp and Chew window almost hits them. The Hardys' garage is set on fire. Someone tampers with the mechanisms on a boat the Hardys drive.
Frank likes Lindsey's party planner, Sierra. Sierra seems to return his affections, but when he and Joe spy on Colin, they see him kissing Sierra. Frank is crushed, but he and Joe realize the two of them are probably planning something sinister for Lindsey's party. The earlier pranks were a ploy to keep Bayport police on high alert. That way, they wouldn't agree to serve as guards at Lindsey's soiree. Frank, Joe and Chet disguise themselves as waiters and crash Lindsey's party. Colin and his gang also show up in disguise. They hold Lindsey at gunpoint and begin robbing the wealthy partygoers. The Hardys and Chet, using a few karate moves, disarm the bad guys just as Chief Olaf arrives. Lindsey orders the party to start again and invites the Hardys and Chet to stay as guests.
Other Belief Systems
Colin and his gang put the Hardys and others in potentially serious danger with pranks, such as throwing rocks through windows, setting fires and tampering with a boat. At the party, Colin holds a gun to Lindsey's head. None of these incidents are described in graphic detail.
The boys discover Colin and Sierra are a couple when they see them kissing.
Get free discussion questions for this book and others, at ThrivingFamily.com/discuss-books.
Lying: The boys tell security at Lindsey's party that they are waiters so they can get inside.
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Readability Age Range
8 to 12
Franklin W. Dixon
Aladdin, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division