OUT OF NOWHERE by Ouida Sebestyen


Age Range: 10 & up
Email this review


 All three have been dumped: the pit bull was shoved from a car; May's husband of 50 years announced that he had another family and left; 13-year-old Harley's mother Vernie abandoned him at an isolated picnic area at the request of her latest pickup. In refusing his mother's boyfriend's offer of a bus ticket back to L.A., Harley not only makes a bid for independence but rejects Vernie's dishonesty and sleazy lifestyle. He befriends the dog (calling him ``Ish,'' for Ishmael), though he has little idea of his needs. In a parallel that shapes the story, May takes responsibility for the boy--temporarily, she imagines, since she's en route to the Texas home of her childhood in hopes of solitude. However, her tenant, Bill, hasn't moved out, and a lifetime's worth of his junk cram the place. Also, Singer--an angelic teenager who turns up wherever she's needed-- is helping Bill after his recent fall. That these people create a new family (with which one hopes the powers that be won't interfere) may be predictable, but it's also deeply satisfying. Sebestyen (Words by Heart, 1979) is a splendid storyteller whose characters hurt one another and make painful mistakes but ultimately learn to work together--while also endearing themselves (and offering some fine insights) to each other and the reader. A heartwarming page- turner. (Fiction. 10+)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1994
ISBN: 0-531-06839-0
Page count: 208pp
Publisher: Orchard
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1994