Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 4 - 8Y4.977017
2011 National Book Award FinalistAs a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him. So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be more than the “skinny thug” that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in Lil Spicer—a fiery young lady who “smelled like daisies would smell if they were growing in a big field under a clearing sky after a rain.” In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubon’s birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage. In this stunning novel, Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.
Paperback, 368 pages
Published on February 5, 2013 by HMH Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 0544022807
ISBN-13: 9780544022805
25 Book Reviews
  • majorerika6
    majorerika6Friday, November 23, 2012 at 4:06 pm
    if you read wensday wars its amazing! this book is the sequel
    • phillip1919dude
      phillip1919dudeThursday, October 4, 2012 at 3:30 pm
      loved it
      • coneperson
        conepersonThursday, July 12, 2012 at 1:42 pm22 stars
        It was about a boy who moved. He hated it. Anyways it was very random. That is why I don't really recommend it.
        • katofallyra21
          katofallyra21Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 3:21 pm55 stars
          It is random...but that's why I loved it! :) lolz