The value of having someone to look up to is pointed out in this brief novel, though not explored deeply. Justin, 10, feels frustrated and put-upon, both by his inability to keep a neat bedroom and by a pair of older sisters who pressure him continually to help around the house. He tries to save his self-respect by convincing himself that housework and cooking are women's work, but a visit to his beloved grandfather sets him straight: Justin learns to make his own bed, wash dishes properly and prepare biscuits according to Grandpa's private recipe. Later, the author injects a healthy shot of self-validation into the story, having Justin win several prizes at a local fair/rodeo, then return home to clean his room and to make dinner for his mother and sisters. Justin learns these new skills with reassuring but unrealistic rapidity--like Leo, he is a Late Bloomer. But why his immediate family could not instruct him is left unclear. Some young readers may find their preconceptions bent by Walter's intriguing if tangential discussion of black cowboys and rodeo stars.