Successful playwright Bonnie Lanthripe brings her talents for fast pace and crisp dialogue to
fiction for middle age readers. The Ringleader tracks the trends of today's pre-teen
crowd — budding videographers, roaming wild animals, stumbling heroes in mysterious
messes. This book is print for the You-Tube generation. It should be consumed with enthusiasm
by those who order their reading served quickly with a generous side of slapstick humor.
~ Lynette L. Wert, ED.D., Professor Emeritus, Creative Studies Department, University of Central Oklahoma
I originally bought copies of this book for my grandchildren, but I'll have to admit I liked it
too. It has mystery, adventure, sibling rivalry, and humor. This book has everything a middle
grade reader (of an adult who still remembers what it's like to be young) could want. It's a
fast read with a believable teenage voice and a plot that is satisfying but still leaves the
reader wanting more. I was sorry to see it end.
~ J. T. Biggs
For Bonnie Lanthripe's debut middle grade novel, she nails the teen voice. Boys will identify with the
desire for adventures, the attempt to hide things from parents, and the camaraderie with friends. I have
an 11 year-old grandson, & I can see him loving this mostly because of the language, the excitement, and
the ache to explore the world. The good thing is parents will welcome good clean family stories that also
interest their kids. I loved reading it myself & look forward to the sequel. It's a highly recommend for me.
~ Janet K. Brown (Wichita Falls, TX, USA)
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An excerpt from Chapter 1:
My heart hit the roof of my mouth, beating at cyber-speed. My breath caught in my throat,
I couldn't breathe. I cannot be seeing what I think I'm seeing! No way, I thought. Maybe
I got a concussion after all when I bonked my head. I inched forward a step for a closer
look. That was all I needed. I was sure. My knees shook and I took a step backward, then another.
When Brendan heard me yelling, he turned his light toward me. When I looked around at them, it was
right in my eyes, blinding me. Enough with the light in my eyes, already.
"What's up?" he called. "You hit your head again?"
The others stood up and shined their lights directly at me. This time, I put my hand up to shield
my eyes and hurried toward them.
"We need to go, guys," I said.
Their mouths hung open as I pushed them aside and plowed a path straight through them.
Someone said, "What do you mean? We –"
"We have to go. Now!" I said and kept going. I didn't want to leave one of them behind, but
I wasn't going to wait to see if they were following me. I just hoped they were. I went as
fast as I could, trying not to panic and break into a run.
Bonnie Lanthripe and husband, Jim, live in Edmond, OK. Playwright, novelist, her short stories have
appeared in several devotionals. The Ringleader is her first venture into the middle-grade genre.
With four children (grown) and six grandchildren, Bonnie says there is always a story just around the corner.