Property of the State

Kirkus Reviews, Best Books of 2016: Teen

Kirkus Reviews, Best Books of 2016: Teen

At times, we may all dream of escape. For Joey Getchie, that moment comes when a false accusation at school provokes a violent clash with his foster father. But on the run and in hiding, he finds out just how tough it can be to go it alone.


Kirkus, Starred Review Kirkus Star
Malcolm Avenue Review
Jen’s Book Thoughts

Who hasn’t dreamed of escape at one time or another?

For 16-year-old loner Joey Getchie, the moment comes when a false accusation at school incites a violent assault by his foster father. Desperate and bleeding, Joey flees to the home of the Huntzels, a family he works for part-time.

In secret, he takes up residence in oversized Huntzel Manor: going to school by day, hiding out by night in an unused wing of the house. Days pass, but his dodgy foster family shows no interest in dragging him home. Joey knows he’s never been an easy placement. As long as his absence remains unreported, he figures the Bobbitts will be content to draw their foster stipend, free of the pain-in-the-ass kid with authority issues.

All he wants is get through the school year, graduate early, and escape foster care forever. But nothing is ever easy. His caseworker, Mrs. Petty, has a sharp eye on him. Classmate Duncan lies in a coma, victim of a hit-and-run the cops think Joey knows more about than he’s telling. Trisha, a foster kid herself, tries to draw the self-protective Joey out and get him to share his troubles. And the Huntzels have dark secrets of their own.

As days become weeks and the pressure mounts around him, Joey finds he’s not the only one with something to hide, or someone to hide from.

What Others Are Saying About Property of the State

Starred Review: “An eminently satisfying series opener for mystery fans who want their downtrodden detectives to be appealing, clever, and unafraid of action.

Kirkus Reviews

“Always entertaining and constantly filled with suspense, Property of the State will captivate its young audience.”

“Joey’s intense, gripping narration of his heartbreaking life will haunt readers.”


“Many adult writers are trying their hands at the young adult category. Bill Cameron succeeds where others have fallen short. He nails the teen voice with raw, authentic power and humor, and knits a tight plot. The story advances at a relentless pace, keeping the reader intrigued and on edge. I read it in one sitting.”

Myra McEntire

“With Property of State, Bill Cameron once again proves that he is a master storyteller. His superbly crafted characters and brilliantly layered plot suck you in and don’t let you go. Like all of Cameron’s books, an absolute must read.”

Brett Battles

“Darkly funny and brilliantly plotted, Property of the State delivers Bill Cameron’s trademark story-telling mastery to the young adult world, introducing us to Joey Getchie, a hero truly worthy of that title. Despite being betrayed and abused by the foster care system that’s supposed to protect him, Joey refuses to give up on a world that’s already thrown him away. With writing full of vivid imagery and taut poetry, Cameron’s engrossing mystery left me cheering and hopeful.”

Patty Blount

“A cut above the usual young adult fare, this intelligent, big-hearted suspense novel delivers page-turning action through a thoughtful and original lens. Cameron nails the voice and tone—you’ll be pulling for his crew of teen characters from the first page.”

Sophie Littlefield

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Property of the State by Bill Cameron

Published by Poisoned Pen Press
Paperback  •  ISBN 9781929345229
eBook  •  ISBN 9781929345236

Revisions are when you get to get to move the darts onto the bullseye while no one is looking.

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