MY BROTHER STEALING SECOND by Jim Naughton

MY BROTHER STEALING SECOND

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A grief-stricken teen-ager learns that the facts of his brother's fatal auto accident have been covered up. Bobby Connely, a player in the midst of an exciting baseball game (his parents and girlfriend watching together from the bleachers), muses about how deceptive appearances can be. Seven months after Billy's death, the air is still thick with sorrow, but Bobby has found solace in two odd friendships: with Cowboy Charley McCrimmon, a beer-drinking, pot-smoking college dropout; and with Annie Dunham, whose parents were killed with Billy. His parents' efforts to take up their jobs and church activities strike Bobby as artificial--even before he discovers his father's alcoholism. Then Bobby learns that the driver of the fatal car was not Billy but the son of the town's wealthiest family, and that his parents and Annie's guardians are being paid to keep quiet. Telling the truth will cost his father's job and Bobby's guarantee of college; but Bobby's father is finally courageous enough to talk to a reporter. The dramatic baseball game here fits rather uneasily into the morose story, and the plot-line has some familiar elements; but Naughton paints a strong cast of characters with sure, deft strokes. The different kinds of understanding Bobby achieves with his parents, the Cowboy, and especially with Annie give him a believable handle on his own feelings.

Pub Date: April 30th, 1989
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: Harper & Row