my take: First off, ignore the cover. Seriously. This book is for high school and above and the cover doesn't reflect that. I heard from a high school librarian that the cover is a turn off - especially for boys.
This book reminds me very much of The Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. I love Marcelo's voice and view point. There's enough humor to keep the tension/conflict in check.
I got a chance to chat with Francisco at the Festival of Faith and Writing. He's adorable, so I wasn't quite expecting this book to be so edgy. He was an attorney for 20 some years before returning to his first love, writing. His law firm experience is put to good use in the plot.
my source: FF&W
my take: excellent.