The best con man in the Midwest is only ten years old. Tom, a.k.a., the Great Brain, is a silver-tongued genius with a knack for turning a profit. When the Jenkins boys get lost in Skeleton Cave, the Great Brain saves the day. Whether it's saving the kids at school, or helping out Peg-leg Andy, or Basil, the new kid at school, the Great Brain always manages to come out on top-and line his pockets in the process.
About the Author
John D. Fitzgerald was born in Utah and lived there until he left at eighteen to begin a series of interesting careers ranging from jazz drummer to foreign correspondent. His stories about The Great Brain are based on his own childhood experiences with a mischievous elder brother named Tom.
Mercer Mayer, writer and illustrator for Little Critter First Readers, as well as Little Critter Spectrum began writing and illustrating children's books in 1966 and since that time, he has published over 300 titles. Open almost any of the award-winning author/illustrator's books, and out may pop dragons, cuddly monsters, wonderful creatures, and endearing critters. "Most of my books are about things that happened to me when I was a little kid," says Mercer. "Now that I'm a big kid, I write about things that happen now, especially with my own children. They always help remind me of what it was like." Born in Little Rock, Arkansas, Mercer Mayer spent his childhood hunting lizards and snakes in the swamps near his home. During his teenage years, he attended the Honolulu Academy of Arts. He later received additional training at the Art Students League in New York City. Upon completion of his studies, he set out with pen and ink to write and illustrate a collection of children's book, reflecting many of the adventures he experienced as a child.