Wednesday, December 31, 2014
STEERING TOWARD NORMAL
Diggy Lawson is an eighth grade boy, growing up on a farm in Minnesota. Diggy's life story is a little unconventional-- his mother and father were never married, and after he was born, his mother left him on his father's doorstep, then allegedly stole his tractor to leave town. Diggy and his father have created a happy, albeitprank-filled life, and he is about to start raising his fourth 4-H steer to show in the Minnesota State Fair. His friend, July, has won the past few years, but she's graduating from high school, and is working with Diggy so he can take her place as the champion. With her help and a lot of hard work, he's pretty sure he can earn the purple ribbon.
Diggy's life takes an unexpected turn when his classmate, Wayne Graf, shows up on their doorstep one night. Wayne's mother has just died, and his alcoholic father has discovered that he is not Wayne's biological father. It seems that Diggy's dad, Pop, is actually Wayne's dad. Wayne moves in with Pop and Diggy, and things turn upside down overnight. Wayne misses his mom desperately, and decides he will help Diggy find his mom. Diggy, however, has spent thirteen years with no mom, and really doesn't even want to look for her. Wayne's insistence on looking feels like banging a scab. Things come to a head at the state fair the next summer
STEERING TOWARD NORMAL is a terrific coming of age story And for those who are concerned about whether they could sell the farm aspect to city kids, there's a lot of great back matter explaining 4-H, steer competitions, etc.