Justin has always been a big fan of Mason Falls High School's baseball team, the Lions - even though they are the worst in their division. But this season, the Lions are playing surprisingly well under the new coach. Almost too well to believe. Justin wonders if the new coach has simply whipped the players into shape, or if something else is responsible for the team's drastic turnaround.
What the critics say
"Last year's dismal baseball record for the Mason Falls Lions set the high-school's rock-bottom expectations for the team, despite its new coach and star transfer student. Yet something is different: the boys are actually hitting and winning. Justin can't play because of an old injury, but he and his friend Katie love watching the games. Still, they can't help wondering if the team is truly that much better or whether something fishy is going on. When they begin to suspect foul play, they set about searching for the truth. With the help of a friend on the team, they uncover evidence of illegal tactics and collusion, but can they bring honor back to their school and the game? This fast-paced sports story from the high-low Mason Falls Mysteries series will appeal to teen reluctant readers who might not stick with Mike Lupica's or Tim Green's longer books. The short chapters, dialogue-driven text, and high stakes make this a safe bet for those seeking a quick read that still has some heft." (Booklist)
"This action-packed new series tells the stand-alone stories of teens living in the fictional Mason Falls who solve various mysteries. In The House, Grace and a group of friends are determined to prove that a local house is not haunted, despite rumors that a ghost from the 1920s named Cordelia Rose haunts it. When a mysterious boy goes missing, Nick and Ava have a foreboding feeling and decide to help find him in Tracks. In The Turnaround, Justin decides to investigate the new baseball coach when the team begins to play suspiciously well and he suspects cheating. Hannah gets Behind the Screen when her older sister begins texting with a guy who does not seem to be who he says he is. Each story takes a realistic perspective and deals with real-life issues such as online scams and fighting with parents. VERDICT These books, written at a fourth grade reading level, are fast-paced with clear-cut resolutions to each case that will resonate with mystery and suspense fans." (School Library Journal)