Ambrose Bukowski is a twelve-year-old with a talent for mismatching his clothes, for saying the wrong thing at the worst possible time, and for words. In short, he's a self-described nerd. Making friends is especially hard because he and his overprotective mother, Irene, have had to move so often. And when bullies at his latest school almost kill him by deliberately slipping a peanut into his sandwich to set off his allergy, it's his mother who has the extreme reaction. From now on, Ambrose has to be home-schooled.
Then Ambrose strikes up an unlikely friendship with the landlord's son, Cosmo, an ex-con who's been in prison. They have nothing in common except for Scrabble. But a small deception grows out of control when Ambrose convinces a reluctant Cosmo to take him to a Scrabble club. Could this spell disaster for Ambrose?
Susin Nielsen got her start writing for popular television series, Degrassi Junior High. Since then, she's written for many Canadian TV shows and her young adult novels have received considerable critical acclaim. Word Nerd and My Messed-Up Life won multiple Young Readers' Choice Awards. The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen won the UKLA Award, the prestigious Governor General's Literary Award, the Canadian Library Association's Children's Book of the Year and many Young Readers' Choice Awards, while We Are All Made of Molecules was longlisted for the Carnegie Medal. Susin lives in Vancouver with her family and two extremely destructive cats.