Friday, August 7, 2009

Catching Crazy by Jacob Cummer

Publisher: Fullproof Publishing, 2009
Pages: 13
ISBN: 978-0-9822326-4-4
Source: LibraryThing giveaway

Thurman is a sixth grader trying to figure out what normal is. His parents are divorced and his dog is missing. He deals with things by clowning around. All he wants is for things to be normal again. But, what is normal? This is something he will learn from his neighbor. Harlan is the one-legged man, who sits in his front yard everyday, smoking his pipe. Rumor is, you don’t want to get to close to him because you might catch his crazy.

When Thurman’s dog goes missing he asks his neighbor if he has seen his dog. Harlan tells him he hasn’t and offers him a job. With money being tight since the divorce, Thurman has no choice but to take Harlan up on his job offer if he want to have a brand new baseball glove. Harlan’s idea of a job is to have Thurman sit and visit with him, talking about all kinds of things, occasionally reading to him or refilling his glass of tea. At the end of each work day, Harlan has a question for Thurman to ponder. It is through these questions that Thurman gets the answers to the questions in his heart. These answers start filling in the gaps in his life. He also realizes that if people had tried to get to know the old man they would have realized he wasn’t crazy. There was always a good reason for the things he did. This book was very good. It was an emotional read that made me cry. I told my mother about the book, read her some excerpts and cried again. I give this a 5 out of 5 rating. It will fit in well on my shelves at school and I am sure it will reach many of my students who have these same questions or situations in their life.

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