Too Shattered for Mending
by Hoffmeister, Peter Brown






With his grandfather missing and his older brother in jail, Little McCardell finds himself drowning in secrets that will shatter lives.





PETER BROWN HOFFMEISTER is the author of the critically acclaimed YA novel This Is the Part Where You Laugh, as well as the adult novel Graphic the Valley and a memoir, The End of Boys. A former troubled teen, Hoffmeister was expelled from three high schools, lived for a short while in a Greyhound bus station, was remanded to a recovery and parole program, and completed a wilderness experience for troubled youth. He went on to become a high school teacher and founded the Integrated Outdoor Program, serving teens of all backgrounds, taking them into wilderness areas to backpack, climb, spelunk, orienteer, and whitewater-raft. He lives with his wife and daughters in Eugene, Oregon.
 
Follow him at @peterbrownhoff.





As in This Is the Part Where You Laugh (2016), Hoffmeister's latest depicts a teenager trying to endure his relatives and life in poverty. Sixteen-year-old Little is trying to survive after his grandfather Big disappears. He looks after himself and his cousin while also controlling romantic feelings for his brother's girlfriend, Rowan. Believing Little knows something about the disappearance, police continually try to glean information from him. It's not long before Little is smothered in the secrets of others, all of whom want his loyalty. This is a raw and gritty book depicting someone attempting to thrive in harsh conditions. It is deliberately paced only until one becomes accustomed to the structure, wherein sporadic flashbacks provide information about what happened to Big, and readers begin to put the pieces together to understand what occurred. Hoffmeister's Mexican heritage is reflected through the main character. A compelling new work by Hoffmeister. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.





When 16-year-old Little McCardell's grandfather disappears, it is up to him to clean up the mess that's left behind. Hunger, violence, drugs, and hopelessness haunt the citizens of his impoverished Idaho town. But Little is determined to break free from his family's legacy. Desperate to find stronger roots, he even begins learning Spanish in hopes of feeling closer to his estranged Mexican father. He is determined to graduate and find a way to care for his young cousin, but his dyslexia is a constant battle. When an obsessed sheriff's deputy begins asking questions about his grandfather's whereabouts, Little must dig for information or risk becoming entangled in a dangerous world. Drugs, abuse, child pornography, casually crude language, drinking, and rape orient readers to the ample challenges that Little faces. But the unfolding mystery, lyrical language, and empathy for the characters make Hoffmeister's a story worth investing in. Little's determination, passion, and genui ne love for the broken people in his life keep this narrative from falling into despair. Short chapters, a sparse setting, and evocative characters combine to create a story that is more than the sum of its parts. Proof that even in the darkness, there can be light. (Fiction. 14-adult) Copyright Kirkus 2017 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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