Synopses & Reviews
Seven years ago, readers everywhere fell in love with Jim Glass, the precocious ten-year-old at the heart of Tony Earley's bestseller Jim the Boy
. Now a teenager, Jim returns in another tender and wise story of young love on the eve of World War Two.
Jim Glass has fallen in love, as only a teenage boy can fall in love, with his classmate Chrissie Steppe. Unfortunately, Chrissie is Bucky Bucklaw's girlfriend, and Bucky has joined the Navy on the eve of war. Jim vows to win Chrissie's heart in his absence, but the war makes high school less than a safe haven, and gives a young man's emotions a grown man's gravity.
With the uncanny insight into the well-intentioned heart that made Jim the Boy a favorite novel for thousands of readers, Tony Earley has fashioned another nuanced and unforgettable portrait of America in another time making it again even realer than our own day. This is a timeless and moving story of discovery, loss and growing up, proving why Tony Earley's writing "radiates with a largeness of heart" (Esquire).
"The small dramas of teenage love get caught in the crosswinds of a war in this sequel to the 2001 bestseller Jim the Boy. It's late summer 1941, and Jim Glass, now a high school senior, has an earnest, unshakable passion for classmate Chrissie Steppe. But as straightforward as his feelings are, the circumstances of his nascent romance are complex: Chrissie's family is indebted to their landlord, whose sailor son Bucky claimed Chrissie as his girl before shipping out to serve on the USS California at Pearl Harbor. Throughout Jim's fraught final year at school, he relies on the advice of his uncles, but after Pearl Harbor is bombed, they can't protect him from the war's toll. Questions of patriotism, sexuality and poverty weave their way into a narrative that's deceptive in its simplicity: the growing pains that Jim and his friends experience pack a startling emotional punch." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The deceptive simplicity of the matter-of-fact narrative inexorably draws the reader into this tender and true coming-of-age tale." Booklist
"Earley...brings to life a very appealing rural community, conjuring up a portrait of a bygone America where people conducted themselves with dignity and devoted themselves to simple virtues and values." Library Journal
"A sweet-tempered, mostly successful sequel for those who like their fiction sepia-toned." Kirkus Reviews
"[A] wonderful reminder of how we used to live." Kansas City Star
"We've waited a long time for a sequel to [Jim the Boy
], and during those eight years, Jim the boy has grown into Jim the young man, the sort of person you'd expect from the first novel. He's decent and contemplative, concerned about others' feelings and his own shortcomings, suspended awkwardly between adolescence and adulthood." Ron Charles, The Washington Post Book World
(read the entire Washington Post Book World review
Seven years ago, readers were introduced to the precocious ten-year-old at the heart of Earley's bestseller Jim the Boy. Now a teenager, Jim returns in another tender and wise story of young love on the eve of World War II.
About the Author
Tony Earley is the author of Jim the Boy, Here We Are in Paradise and Somehow Form a Family. He lives with his family in Nashville, Tennessee, where he is the Samuel Milton Fleming Associate Professor of English at Vanderbilt University.