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Somewhere in the Darkness (Newbery Honor Book) Hardcover – May, 1992
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From School Library Journal
Grade 7-10-- A poignant story of motherless, 14-year-old Jimmy Little, whose convict father takes him on a search for truth, identity, and family. Whisked away from the stability of a homelife with his devoted grandmother, Mama Jean, Jimmy confronts the harsh realities of his father's life on the run. Jailed for his involvement in an armed robbery and falsely accused of killing a man, Crab escapes from prison to convince his son of his innocence. What Jimmy discovers is a man desperate to establish a relationship with his son but unable to break free of a lifestyle of stealing and moving on that leaves little room for security. On their highway odyssey, Crab becomes increasingly sick with a kidney ailment. Following a climactic encounter with the man who accused him, Crab is again arrested and hospitalized. For Jimmy, the flicker of hope that he and his father might work things out becomes a realization that love is built on trust, concern, and honesty. Through terse dialogue and characterization, Myers conveys a powerful message about the need for parent and child to believe in and respect one another. By story's end, the boy understands that to fully appreciate someone else's life you must first give meaning to your own. Whether from urban or rural backgrounds, single or double parent families, readers will find this universal journey of self-discovery gratifying. --Gerry Larson, Chewning Junior High School, Durham, NC
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
An eminent author who's excelled with both tragedy (Scorpions, 1988, Newbery Honor) and funny, lighthearted novels writes in a serious vein but offers a realistic gleam of hope. Jimmy, 14, has been raised by his beloved, dependable ``Mama Jean,'' a friend of parents he doesn't remember; his mother is dead, and his dad, ``Crab,'' is in prison for killing a man in an armed robbery. Suddenly Crab shows up, claiming that he's on parole and has a job in Chicago. Jimmy agrees to go with him, but Crab's lies begin to unravel even before they leave New York: he has kidney failure, and has escaped from a prison hospital (``When they start operating on an inmate, I don't know what they'd be thinking''); the job is an illusion. The two go on to Arkansas, where Crab hopes old friend Rydell will vouch for his innocence: Crab was convicted of murder as the result of another associate's plea-bargaining. Rydell, who once betrayed Crab with his silence, betrays him again by calling the police; Crab surrenders, then dies soon after in the hospital. Myers builds a poignant picture here of a failed man whose clumsy reaching out to his son comes too late to make a real bond. Yet Crab does leave a legacy: going home to Mama Jean, Jimmy--a bright, honest, loving boy who has recently been floundering in his inner-city school and exhibiting signs of real depression--resolves that the next generation will be different: ``He would know just how he was like his son...and where their souls touched and where they didn't.'' Sober, thought-provoking, rich in insight and detail: another splendid achievement. (Fiction. 12+) -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
Top customer reviews
Jimmy and his mom are doing great. Suddenly Jimmy's life is turned upside down when a mysterious man shows up and says that he is his father. He knows a lot of thing like his father's name, "Crab." Then he says that he and Jimmy have to go to Chicago because he has to get a job, which is why he is out of jail. Leaving his mom behind he goes with Crab to Chicago but along the way he learns that he isn't going to just Chicago and he isn't going there to get his dad a job. Then out of no where Crab wants Jimmy to know the truth that he didn't shoot anybody and Jimmy believes him. Now they re on a race to search for the truth seeing old friends and learning new things. They need to get to Arkansas but on the way crabs back goes out. Then Rydell (the guy who really shot the guards) won't tell the truth. Jimmy and Crab keep running into problems and are running out of time but don't quit they keep at it.
My favorite character is Crab he has such a reputation, he broke out of jail just find his son and tell him he did not kill anybody. He really needed him to know him because Jimmy never really new his father all he had was a picture. His background about him is great he is wanted by the police and he and his son are trying to tell them that he's innocent.
The author really put some description in the book with the setting. One example was when they went to Chicago I felt like I could see the buildings. Then the author described how the land changed from highway to farm land. I could vividly see the setting many times in this book.
This book could not get any better. It had action and adventure two things I love in a great book. It could use a different ending so he could make a sequel to it. I've got to read another book of his. I can strongly recommend this book for action and adventure seekers. This an all out great book to read you can't put down.
Crab has an interesting attitude that adds curiosity to the story. Jimmy never does know if going with him was a good idea or an accident waiting to happen. Trying to connect with a father that you haven't seen since infancy is a hard task for Jimmy. This would be a difficult feat for anyone to overcome. Can Jimmy manage with his alien father or will Crab's effort be worthless? The story will have its signs of hope and depression, making it a twisting tale.
Jimmy seems to cooperate with Crab even though he is still shaky about even being with him. Also can he feel safe with someone who escapes from jail? He hopes Crab has no plot under his sleeves that could possibly leave him in prison once again. Trust is the key in this epic thriller by Myers.
Most recent customer reviews
This book is about a thirteen year old boy that was living in Harlem Newyork .Jimmy had a father but he was in jail for doing drugs.Read more