cover image Calling Home

Calling Home

Michael Cadnum / Author Viking Children's Books $14.95 (192p)

Limpid prose and an imaginative use of metaphor make this problem novel stretch beyond just another entry in the genre. Underachieving, drinking, and at odds with his single parent, Peter hides a terrible secret: his best friend Mead is dead, and it is Peter's fault. Confused and depressed, Peter calls Mead's family, pretending to be the dead boy. Peter is not insensitive, however, despite his failings, as he tries to behave morally in a world that offers little guidance or encouragement. Reminiscent of Larry Bograd's Bad Apple , this novel presents a compelling first-person look at a troubled urban youth that offers no easy outs for either protagonist or reader. Cadnum's writing deftly captures Peter's alienation without losing track of his very real--and very human--confusion. Ages 12-up. (May)