One of the Boys

Daniel Magariel. Scribner, $22 (176p) ISBN 978-1-5011-5616-8
The unnamed boys of the title of Daniel Magariel’s spare and piercing debut novel are the 12-year-old narrator, his older brother, and their father. The trio are headed from Kansas to New Mexico to begin a new life after a brutal divorce and custody battle referred to by the father as “the war.” The narrator, complicit in lying about his mother’s negligence so his father could gain custody, at first treats his new life like the adventure he was promised that it would be. But when his father’s violent tendencies and severe drug addiction become increasingly apparent, the narrator finally begins to make sense of the divorce and the true source of the family’s demise. The urgent present action of the novel—in which the brothers adapt to their new life while tiptoeing around their erratic and largely absent father—is combined with flashbacks portraying life before the family’s collapse, ultimately creating a stunning and tragic portrait of both the joys and limitations of love. Agent: Bill Clegg, the Clegg Agency. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/23/2017
Release date: 03/14/2017
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 176 pages - 978-1-5011-5617-5
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-5082-3112-7
Open Ebook - 160 pages - 978-1-5011-5618-2
Hardcover - 978-1-4328-4141-6
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