Synopses & Reviews
andlt;bandgt;A soldier returns home from Iraq forever changed in this poignant and pivotal novel from award-winning authorsand#8211;one a veteran.andlt;/bandgt;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;Ben lives a charmed lifeand#8212;effortlessly landing the lead in the high school musical, dating the prettiest girl in school. When he decides to enlist in the army, no one thinks heand#8217;ll be in real danger. But his decision has devastating consequences: His convoy gets caught in an explosion, and Ben ends up in a coma for two months. When he wakes up, he doesnand#8217;t know where he isand#8212;or remember anything about his old life. His family and friends mourn what they see as a loss, but Ben perseveres. And as he triumphs, readers will relate to this timely novel that pairs the action and adventure of the best war stories with the emotional elements of struggle and transformation.
"Mazer (Heroes Don't Run) and Lerangis (wtf) use strong characters and storytelling to explore the slow and painful recovery of an injured teenage soldier. High school senior Ben has great grades and a potentially bright future in the arts, so his friends, family, and girlfriend are all surprised when he enlists in the military. And they are horrified when he is quickly deployed to Iraq, where he receives a head injury and suffers brain damage in the line of duty. The story is divided into Before, During, and After sections; Mazer and Larangis shift their focus among the prominent people in Ben's life, including his autistic brother, Chris; his best friend, Niko; and his fiancÃ©, Ariela. The authors carefully demonstrate the effect the tragedy has on everyone involved, particularly Ariela's attempts to maintain a social life in college, while vividly bringing Ben's struggles to life. (One chapter simply shows a scribble on a sheet of paper, Ben's attempt to write.) Readers will likely sense where the story is headed, but the journey is powerful and worthwhile. Ages 12 up." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Ben has always had it pretty easy--with no acting experience, he landed the lead in his high school musical, and he's dating the prettiest girl in school. Haunted by memories of 9/11, he makes the decision to enlist in the army--with devastating consequences. Somehow nobody ever thought Ben would be one of the soldiers affected, but after his convoy gets caught in an explosion, Ben is in a coma for two months. When he wakes up, he doesn't know where he is, and he doesn't remember anything about his old life. His family and friends mourn what they see as a loss, but Ben perseveres. Although he will never be the person he once was, this is the story of his struggle and transformation.
About the Author
andlt;Bandgt;Harry Mazerandlt;/Bandgt; is the author of many books for young readers, including andlt;i andgt;Please, Somebody Tell Me Who I Amandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;i andgt;My Brother Abeandlt;/iandgt;; the Boy at War trilogy; andlt;i andgt;The Wild Kidandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;i andgt;The Dog in the Freezerandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;i andgt;The Island Keeperandlt;/iandgt;; and andlt;i andgt;Snow Boundandlt;/iandgt;. His books have won numerous honors, including a andlt;iandgt;Horn Bookandlt;/iandgt; honor and an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults citation. Along with his wife, Norma Fox Mazer, Harry received an ALAN award in 2003 for outstanding contribution to adolescent literature. He lives in Montpelier, Vermont.Peter Lerangisandlt;Bandgt; andlt;/Bandgt;is the author of many books for young readers, including andlt;iandgt;wtfandlt;/iandgt;, andlt;iandgt;Smilerand#8217;s Bonesandlt;/iandgt;, the Watchers series, andlt;iandgt;The Sword Thiefandlt;/iandgt;, and the andlt;iandgt;New York Timesandlt;/iandgt; bestselling 39 Clues series. Peter lives with his wife and two sons in New York City. Visit him at PeterLerangis.com.