TROUBLEMAKER by Alberta Armer
Kirkus Star

TROUBLEMAKER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Joe Fuller is almost twelve when he's removed from the city streets to a country (foster) home in Indiana: his father is in jail; his mother is institutionalized after a breakdown. The Murrays have several other children from the county: Janey and Maureen (her mother doesn't have room for her) and younger Melvin (a Jewish orphan). They all like the Murrays but Joe quietly resists; he calls Mrs. Murray Ma'am and refuses to invert the letters; he steals from her purse (to redeem his real mother's mink stole, from a hock shop); and he does enjoy their fallout shelter, their new dog, all guiltily. Finally he is caught stealing, and the Murrays, firmly, unreprovingly, put him to work to pay it back; at the end he adjusts to the idea that ""for the summer"" will go on just a little longer.... A regenerative story in which the purpose is effectively instrumental and not intrusive; all of this is very real--the youngsters, the dialogue, the values.

Pub Date: Oct. 12th, 1966
Publisher: World