Sunday, December 18, 2016

Hideout by Watt Key

Sam is twelve and has his own boat.  He lives in Mississippi with his Mom and Dad and is life is good.  He's a good kid overall but he's still got a lot to learn.  It confuses him when he gets beaten up at school for no more than being friends with another boy.  He wonders if he should still be friends with him and pretty much decides not.  So he heads out on his boat, looking for excitement.  After all, there's a dead man somewhere out there in the swamp and maybe he can find him and be more important in his father's eyes.  What he finds isn't dead...

Farrar, Straus, & Giroux (BYR) and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published January 10th.

This book should especially interest middle grade boys.  It's mostly about the world of boys and men and all the trouble you can get in by trying to help someone.  I enjoyed the tale.  I could relate to it.  I was different, too.

Sam is cruising in the area he's not supposed to be in (like all children, he stretches his limits) when he comes across a young boy living on an island in the swamp.  He has no food, no bedclothes, no other clothing that what he's wearing.  Sam goes home and sneaks out some food to share with the boy.  Each trip finds him taking more goods as well as food.  The boy insists his father and his brother will be joining him but Sam doesn't think that story sounds right.  It's not.

His stepbrother is not a nice man.  When he shows up with a couple of other guys, Sam gets nervous.  It gets worse.  The brother decides he knows too much.  With the young boy determined to find his dad or drown himself instead of going back to a bad foster home, and the bad brother,  money and marijuana involved, Sam is in a bad situation.

There's plenty of action, lots to worry about, and reconciliations between Sam and his friend he left behind and Sam and his new friend.  It all works out, despite the trouble Sam ran into.  He was very lucky. 

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