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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Flight Risk

Flight Risk

A Novel

Jennifer Fenn

Roaring Brook Press

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Jennifer Fenn's debut novel inspired by true events, about a teenage boy who has stolen—and crashed—not one, but three airplanes. And each time he’s walked away unscathed.

Who is Robert Jackson Kelly? Is he a juvenile delinquent? A criminal mastermind? A folk hero? One thing is clear: Robert always defies what people think of him. And now, the kid who failed at school, relationships, and almost everything in life, is determined to successfully steal and land a plane.

Told as an investigation into Robert’s psyche, the narrative includes multiple points of view as well as documentary elements like emails, official records, and interviews with people who knew Robert. Ultimately, Flight Risk is a thrilling story about one teenager who is determined to find a moment of transcendence after everyone else has written him off as lost.

FEBRUARY 2010


Robert Jackson Kelley stole his last plane on a cloudy night, the moon casting hazy light through the gray-gauze sky. He crouched in the trees, his legs cramped, pausing only to be sure the cops hadn’t beaten...

Praise for Flight Risk

"Teens will love the documentary-style narrative and will root for underdog antihero Robert." - School Library Journal

"...rife with police chases, vacation-home burglaries, and, of course, plane crashes." - Kirkus

"Fenn has penned an original, thrilling tale with wide appeal, including for older reluctant readers." - Booklist

"Debut author Fenn tells a multilayered story of identity, ambition, and societal expectations as she chronicles the misadventures of Robert Jackson Kelley, who becomes known as the Lollipop Kid after he steals and crashes three private airplanes." - Publisher's Weekly

"The primary focus, through Robert’s narration, is painfully vivid, putting the reader into the jumpy, erratic consciousness of a boy who really ought to have been taking his medication. Besides that internal exploration, the novel also interrogates the public's fascination with criminals who gain cult status by evading capture." - VOYA

Reviews from Goodreads

Jennifer Fenn

Jennifer Fenn has worked as a middle school language arts teacher and has had short fiction and essays published in numerous publications. She lives with her husband, daughter, and Scottish terrier in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. Flight Risk is her debut novel.

Roaring Brook Press

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