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Calves In The Mud Room Paperback – February 14, 2014
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
"In his debut novella, Brown introduces Wade Summers,
a teenager who wants nothing more than to go to his
school dance with Glory Schoonover, a beautiful, rich
girl...Brown's deft prose is both richly descriptive
and sparse, bringing to life Wade's environment, where
dead horses in the back of a pickup truck stand cheek by
jowl with rare orchids and new life.
An elegant, exciting debut."
-- Kirkus Reviews
...only 98 pages, but that doesn't mean Jerome O Brown has skimped on the story or that there's not enough there to get you hooked. Quite the opposite...His quick writing and to-the-point storytelling propel the plot and reader forward. The writing had descriptions and personality that made me smirk and smile. It's not your typical teenage love story...Fun and worth the read.
Brown presents an intimate portrait of the modern-day
rural life of teenagers that deftly combines text-
messaging jargon and the complexities of cattle farming...
an engaging exploration of a young person's search
for his sense of self in a seemingly (but not altogether)
About the Author
When he's not directing tv commercials or corporate videos, trading stocks, or hiking with his dog, Brown shoots stills and writes. Calves In The Mud Room is his first novella. He lives in Teton Valley, Idaho with his way cool wife and their collie, Maximilian.
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Top customer reviews
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Wade is on the verge of manhood and he's determined not to let anything stand in his way, not his worthless step-dad, not his younger siblings, and certainly not the cows who are on the verge of giving birth. But, we all know what they say about the best laid plans...guilt ridden over leaving the struggling cows and the voice of his deceased grandfather ringing in his ears, Wade, as usual, does the right thing and helps the cows birth their calves. Now, he's late for the school dance and definitely ruined his chances with the super hot girl, his big evening seems hopeless, and he knows he's going to have to deal with his stepfather when he gets home . However, Wade's life's about to change and he discovers, as the Rolling Stones so cleverly put it, "you can't always get what you want...sometimes you might just find you get what you need."
Calves in the Mud Room is a well told story brimming with vivid details and identifiable characters. Like the rare orchid Wade buys for his date (which she rejects as worthless) his life is ready to bloom into one of beauty and opportunity. I like that Wade takes a stand and as the story came to an end I knew he was going to be okay after all. I very much enjoyed Calves in the Mud Room.
I highly recommend picking up a copy.
This book was particularly poignant to me as I have stood at the crevice of blood and life that bringing a bawling, desperate calf into the world from a laboring heifer.
The main character’s conflict with his stepfather is a perfect foil for his coming of age, and is written with the respect due the rising man within the teenage boy.
Definitely recommend this book.
The premise is that uber-teen-queen Glory has, just out of the blue, invited farm-boy Wade to take her to the Valentine's Day Sponge Dance. Stunned, but determined to be up to the task, Wade meticulously prepares every element, girding his virginal loins for this odyssey into a world in which he has little experience. As the saying goes, "life is what happens when you're making other plans." Wade's heifers chose that frigid, blizzard-fueled dance-night to rewrite his itinerary, with his alcoholic parents adding to the sabotage with a bunch of dead-end detours.
The quest for Glory, foiled by a series of calving obstacles, presumes to be the spindle around which Calves in the Mud Room spins. However, the center-point of this retrospective gradually and undoubtedly emerges to be Wade's connection with the life-forces that created him. The reader is hitched to the plow alongside the author, side-by-side straining to turn the soil, and revealing a richness that defines this boy whose chaotic upbringing has been mitigated by a precious few.
There is a ring of authenticity in Brown's inaugural novella that draws the reader into every venue in the story, and every entity encountered. The rich prose is sensuous, and evocative of every sight, sound, smell and feeling ever experienced, frequently resulting in a visceral reader response. Brown does not back away from the primal quality of his characters, causing the reader to become enmeshed in the relationships. This 98-page novella draws readers inextricably into the dance-night episode, causing them to infer that they have only just scratched the surface of the seasons of Wade Summers. A great read, perfect for even the busiest among us. We all need to have our souls refreshed on occasion, and this book will do just that.
I’d like to see a prequel written telling us more about Wade’s relationship with his grandfather. It was evident in the story that his grandfather shaped him into the man that he was and that the grandfather was a very special person.
I liked this book a lot.
Most recent customer reviews
To be honest, I wasn't sure what to make of this book.Read more
While this may not be your typical "coming of age" story as it only takes place...Read more
Simple, short and yet greatly expressive. Calves In The Mud Room is a novella about an evening in the life of Wade Summers.Read more