By Gary D. Schmidt
Jack tells the story of how Joseph Brooks comes into his family as a foster brother. Jack knows a few things about Joseph’s past—he tried to murder a teacher, he went to Stone Mountain Reformatory and he was going to be a father at 13 years of age. Apparently what Jack knew so did all the kids at school- so when Joseph started school he was bullied and treated like trash. Jack often finds that he needs to dig deep within himself to “always have Joseph’s back.”
Joseph tried to keep to himself, but living on a farm it was hard not to love the animals and them to love you back—as this was just beginning of the love story that was beginning to unfold. Although Joseph was bullied at school, some of his teachers saw his potential and went out of their way to help him and keep him safe. He found unconditional love at home with his foster parents and Jack and that is when he began to open up. He shared his love tale about his time with Madeline and his newborn daughter. He had not yet seen his daughter, Jupiter, but he was already head over heels in love with her!
Joseph had a huge heart to love but hardships and tragedy lie around every corner for him. Readers will love this compelling coming of age story that will fill them with joy and angst.