Half Nelson, Full Nelson

Bruce Stone, Author HarperCollins Publishers $12.95 (218p) ISBN 978-0-06-025921-1
Stone's first novel should establish his reputation for craftsmanship and for infusing characters with life. Readers will really care about narrator Nelson Gato and his pseudo-punk friend Heidi Tedesco. Called ""Half Nelson'' by his father, who yearns for a career as a wrestler, Nelson despairs of a solid family life. His mother takes his little siser Vanessa and leaves the Gato trailer home in Florida. Heidi, shunted aside by her mother in favor of the woman's male friends, teams up with Nelson in a plot to make their parents accept their roles as respectable adults. The teenagers rocket north after Nelson's mother and kidnap Vanessa. Although the scheme causes ongoing disasters, the ultimate result implies a better future for Heidi and perhaps the reunion of the Gatos. Swinging between hysterically comic events and pathos, the novel stands high above many of the season's offerings and could, incidentally, be a fine film if adapted by the right people. (12up)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1985
Release date: 01/01/1985
Paperback - 978-0-06-447047-6
Mass Market Paperbound - 218 pages - 978-0-694-05603-3
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