Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Way to Stay in Destiny by Augusta Scattergood

Augusta Scattergood authored a favorite book of mine, Glory Be. Now she changes course by connecting Theolonius Monk and baseball while keeping her amazing knowing of kid smart in her new book, The Way to Stay in Destiny.

What a treat of a read! I love how Scattergood seems to weave her books. Her writing is so well thought out as well as an inspiring example of storytelling; she creates a tapestry of experience, living, and crafting through the eyes and hearts of young people. It is obvious she studies them when she writes...or else she just knows kids really with ultra-clarity. Take Theo for example. The main character in Scattergood's new book, Theo is stuck with his seemingly deadbeat uncle. Uncle quit life in Alaska to come take care of young teen Theo, and he is none too happy about it. Theo's parents died in a car wreck years before, and now his grandparents (Uncle Raymond's parents) are unable to care for him. Theo left everything (friends, dog, relations) because Uncle forced him. Theo meets a girl who just happens to love baseball as much as he does within the first few days of being in Destiny, Florida, and with the possibility of a real friend, his thinking turns from regret (like Uncle's) to maybe- I- could-have-a-friend and maybe-I- can-do- this. He also begins to take life into his own hands, realizing what he wants to do and where he wants to live. He finds ways to stand up to bitter and overpowering Uncle Raymond, he keeps playing the piano much to the disgust of said uncle, and he finds out more about himself in the process. Baseball, loss, music, history, life without support, life with support.....Theo keeps popping up in my mind as does his sooon-to-be-sidekick Annabel and wonderful room-renter Miss Sister. And the story ends with important questions, exactly like I like.

I could keep going but I think I have said enough. Scattergood simply writes clean and steady storylines that keep me massively engaged. The Way to Stay in Destiny is a new favorite of mine. Can't wait to read more from this author. 

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