Noah is not having a good year.
His mom is in prison, he's living with his mom's boyfriend -- who he's sure is just waiting until his mother's six month sentence is up to kick him out -- and he's officially hated by everyone at his middle school, including his former best friend. It's Noah's fault that the entire football program got shut down after last year.
One day, Noah notices a young bear at the edge of the woods with her head stuck in a bucket. A bucket that was almost certainly left outside as part of a school fundraiser to bring back the football team. As days go by, the bear is still stuck -- she's wasting away and clearly getting weaker, even as she runs from anyone who tries to help. And she's always alone.
Though Noah ignores the taunts at school and ignores his mother's daily phone calls from jail, he can't ignore the bear. Everyone else has written the bear off as a lost cause -- just like they have with Noah. He makes it his mission to help her.
But rescuing the bear means tackling his past -- and present -- head-on. Could saving the bear ultimately save Noah, too?
Beth Vrabel's signature voice and heartwarming style shine in this middle grade novel exploring themes of reputation, family, and forgiveness.
AuthorBy Beth Vrabel
ImprintSky Pony Press
Published6 February 2018
Dimensions5.50 x 8.25in.
About the author
Beth Vrabel is the award-winning author of A Blind Guide to Stinkville, A Blind Guide to Normal, Caleb and Kit, and the Pack of Dorks series. She can't clap to the beat or be trusted around Nutella, but indulges in both often, much to the dismay of her family. She lives in the Dallas, Texas area. Visit her online at www.bethvrabel.com.
"Vrabel has an eye for sympathetic, offbeat characters -- and a knack for feel-good resolutions." - Kirkus Review
"Once in a great while I read a book and want to immediately email the author to thank them for writing it. A Blind Guide to Normal is one of those books. It's filled with kindness, friendship, and hope. Lots of hope. Just beautiful." - Kerry O’Malley Cerra, author of Just a Drop of Water
Praise for A Blind Guide to Stinkville:
"Most commendable is Vrabel's focus on compromise and culture shock. Disorientation encompasses not only place and attitude, but also the rarely explored ambivalence of being disabled on a spectrum. … Readers who worry about fitting in—wherever that may be—will relate to Alice's journey toward compromise and independence." - Kirkus Review
Praise for Pack of Dorks:
"Vrabel displays a canny understanding of middle-school vulnerability." - Booklist
"The challenging subject matter is handled in a gentle, age-appropriate way with humor and genuine affection." - School Library Journal