Kirkus Star


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Another wonderfully ebullient tale from Byars about ordinary children whose courage and perseverance lead them into astonishing situations. Byars neatly weaves the threads of four experiences into one lively plot. We first meet little Junior Blossom on the barn roof; he is planning to fly with the aid of wings tied on by his taunting siblings, Veto and Maggie, and a considerable imagination. Junior falls, breaking both legs, and lands in the hospital. Vern and Maggie flee to the woods. Why are the police there? (Grand) Paw has accidentally spilled a truck full of recyclable cans and waved a gun at some boys who heedlessly scattered them further, so he's in jail and the police are trying to check up on the kids left in his care by widowed Mom, who makes them all a meager living tiding in rodeos. Vern and Maggie try to get in touch with Mom and try to, find out what's become of Junior; they make headlines by succeeding in breaking into jail so that Vern can join Paw. Junior breaks out of the hospital with the aid of his roommate, Ralphie, who lacks a leg and is a terror; equipped with a wheelchair, they get to court in time for Paw's trial. Needless to say, all ends happily. Byars is a master of perfectly chosen incident and phrase in a deceptively simple and accessible style. Not just anybody, the Blossoms should be greeted with wholehearted enthusiasm.
Pub Date: April 4th, 1986
ISBN: 0823421457
Page count: 196pp
Publisher: Delacorte
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1986


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