Bobby Byington needed to nearly die in order for his dad to finally stop drinking.
Now that the Choctaw teen’s father is sober, Bobby is able to experience the endearing side of his father. Unfortunately, Bobby’s best friend and high school basketball teammate, a white boy named Lloyd Blanton, is caught in the middle of a domestic violence crisis when his alcoholic father is accused of assaulting his mother. Lloyd’s father claims the incident was an accident, leaving Lloyd and the rest of the community to carry the weight of Mr. Blanton’s denial and the consequences of his father’s actions. Recalling his own past experience with an alcoholic father, Bobby attempts to console Lloyd, channeling their angst through the camaraderie they find on the basketball court. This story of friendship shows how a supportive Native American community comes together to support a wounded family, as Bobby is joined by his Cherokee friend Johnny and their Choctaw basketball coach. In Bobby and Lloyd, Tingle highlights the resilience that young people have as they navigate family challenges. What is most special is the bond that develops between Bobby and his father, a father-son relationship that defies the odds, depicting a healed father on the other side of sobriety.
An empathetic story that any teen dealing with family alcoholism can connect to. (Fiction. 12-16)