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Wrecker: A Novel Hardcover – February 15, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
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“Opening Wrecker is akin to unwrapping a gift wrapped with great care. You don't know what is inside, but you know it's something special. Summer Wood, in her second novel, delivers a rare treat in this story of a boy and his mothers. It unfolds along a deliciously unpredictable path, one that can and should be savored.” ―Denver Post
“[An] affecting novel... Wood succeeds with surefooted prose; a lush, earthy California backdrop; and a sensitive story of nurturing and family.” ―Publishers Weekly
“A sweet adoptive-home story with extra heart and lovingly flawed characters, this second novel by Wood will find its home with fans of Jo-Ann Mapson and Pam Houston.” ―Library Journal
“Wood moves her characters gracefully through trying times, both cultural and personal.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“A page-turner…a literary exploration of how love breaks us and heals us...told in highly crafted prose that wastes not a word and is infused with sensitive insight. Wrecker is an unforgettable novel. ” ―New Mexico Magazine
“Summer Wood's remarkable novel carves its way, sentence by gorgeous sentence, into the great complexity of love and family and community. Her dialogue is so natural and full we feel as though we are illicitly eavesdropping on these complex, flawed, and full-hearted characters. Wrecker is a tender, stunning novel.” ―Meredith Hall, author of Without a Map
“Wrecker is a wonderful portrait of a California long lost, but still alive here. Wrecker will wreck your heart and then put it back together again, with the big heart of a chosen family.” ―Susan Straight, author of Highwire Moon and Take One Candle Light a Room
“This novel is a love song to well intentioned, wholly dedicated, and deeply flawed motherhood. Summer Wood creates more than just a great story, deftly, elegantly, and intricately told. She broadens both our notion of family, and our appreciation for whatever we call our own. Wrecker is a big-hearted, big-loving compassionate book.” ―Pam Houston, author of Cowboys Are My Weakness
“Well, I've been Wreckered. Drawn in, delighted and devastated by one small boy and the people who love him. Summer Wood has a keen eye for place, and for the ordinary moments in life that become extraordinary in memory. Here, she aims that astute eye on a ragtag group living on the outskirts of society, each member pulled into the same orbit by the centrifugal force that is Wrecker. This book is a fierce and unapologetic celebration of life, a lesson in nurturing, and a reminder of the work it takes to get the real loving done.” ―Barb Johnson, author of More of This World or Maybe Another
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Top Customer Reviews
It didn't matter.
Wrecker is a beautiful book about a young child (named Wrecker...yeah, it takes place in the late 60's) who's mother loses custody of him after getting caught up in drugs (and other things, but I'll try not to spoil the plot.) She's sentenced to 30 years of prison, not eligible for parole for 15 years, leaving her 3 year old son to the foster care system. After bouncing around a little bit, Wrecker ultimately comes to rest with his mother's sister's husband, Len. Len has his own problems, however, since his wife (Wrecker's aunt) is brain damaged after a terrible illness, and is already more than he can handle. Not knowing what else to do, Len takes Wrecker to the three women who live next door. Wrecker ends up being raised, almost literally, by a village. The book details the wonderfully written story about his childhood, his early adulthood, and the experiences of the woman who ends up claiming him as hers.
The book is very entertaining from page one, and it never crosses the line into becoming too sappy or emotional. It also wasn't over-dramatic in its story-telling. I loved it, and I couldn't put it down. So glad that LibraryThing sent it
I loved the realistic look at life as a hippie in the 60's and on. If only all children in such unfortunate circumstances, could find their way into a family with so much love and devotion. I use the term family loosely, but that it what this group of misfits become to poor little Wrecker.
One day in 1962, Lisa Fay, a homeless and strung out woman who got herself into some very bad stuff, gives birth to a son in a public park in San Francisco. She'd planned on a home birth but she had no home. For the first year of his life, Lisa Fay didn't even name her son, but then she decided on `Wrecker' because he seemed to get into everything and make a wreck. Wrecker's father walked out and Lisa Fay got herself involved in some drug and gun deals that went wrong. This cost her fifteen years in prison if she made parole.
After Wrecker turns three and has been in a series of foster homes, his uncle Len is located and he agrees to adopt Wrecker. Len's wife who was completely debilitated by a root canal that went to her brain is Lisa Fay's sister. Len brings Wrecker to Bow Farm and the people there take to him immediately.
There is Ruth, the homebody and cook who was saved from taking her own life several years ago. Johnny Appleseed plants trees and opposes the razing of the wilderness. He is pretty much a loner but fits in well at Bow Farm. Melody is one of the original founders of the farm and she falls for Wrecker in a big way, becoming his mother. She works in the local mercantile when she isn't caring for Wrecker. Willow is the other owner of the farm and she has run away from something that is eating her insides out. She is a weaver and works on exquisite and exotic carpets.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good book. Loved the people, the group they formed and lives they lived together. Good writing and story. I could picture the farm and environment they lived in.Published 13 months ago by Joan C. Parsons
It was a very well written story about the human condition, compassion and finding strength. Very much enjoyed it!Published 13 months ago by 0607
Thank you, Summer Wood for exploring how all of us have the capacity to love and change. And for showing how loving a child, truly loving him/her can make all the difference in how... Read morePublished 13 months ago by mlb
I really liked this book because it was different take on the "it takes a village" theme. As an old hippie myself it made me remember some things. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Kim Willis
Once a kid gets into the foster care system they don't often leave it even though their homes change frequently. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Jackie r
I liked this book as a relaxing walk through the trials and joys of raising a boy even by unlikely substitute parents. A child can touch your soul and this book shows that.Published 15 months ago by Lisa J. Shultz
A heart-wrenching, but heart-warming, story of a group of lost and different individuals who come together to become a warm family unit. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Ellen B. Smith
Awesome story of love and connection! Summer writes like a dream with vivid immagery, interesting people and relationships. I love this book!Published on December 2, 2013 by Harper Wood