After his mother's death, twelve-year-old Skiff Beaman decides that it is up to him to earn money to take care of himself and his father, so he undertakes a dangerous trip alone out on the ocean off the coast of Maine to try to catch a huge bluefin tuna.
Living in New Jersey in 1935, twelve-year-old Katie Leigh Flynn describes, in a series of poems, the effect on her small town of the real-life trial of Bruno Hauptmann for the kidnapping and murder of Charles Lindbergh's baby son.
After twelve-year-old Annika, a foundling living in late nineteenth-century Vienna, inherits a trunk of costume jewelry, a woman claiming to be her aristocratic mother arrives and takes her to live in a strangely decrepit mansion in Germany.
When twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931, meets a mysterious toyseller and his goddaughter, his undercover life and his biggest secret are in danger.
Nathaniel, a magician's apprentice, summons up the djinni Bartimaeus and instructs him to steal the Amulet of Samarkand from the powerful magician Simon Lovelace. Followed by The Golem's Eye and Ptolemy's Gate.