John Fell's life was turned upside down the summer he fell in love with Helen Keating (aka Keats) - her rich father may not have approved of his only daughter dating a junior, whose father was a detective but is now dead, and who has to work to help put food on the table, but that wasn't going to stand in the way of young love. Except that it did. Keats stood him up for her senior prom and, stunned, Fell bumped into Woodrow Pingree. Also wealthy, he had a plan that would change Fell's life - a free ride to a private school out of state that would set Fell up for life. There was just one hitch - he had to tell everyone, including Keats and the new girl in his life, Delia Tremble, that he was in Switzerland.
This is the first in an old trilogy (Fell was first published in 1989 and it's sequels at two yearly intervals thereafter) that has managed to stay fresh and involving. Fell combines a fast-paced plot with exploration of ideas around family bonds, integrity and privilege, including a really interesting concept for the school Fell attends. At the same time the reader gets to know a genuinely nice and well-rounded character who's mature beyond his years. The novel ends on a cliff-hanger, paving the way for the sequel. - Alex