Arlo’s grandfather travels in time. Not literally — he just mixes up the past with the present. Arlo holds on as best he can, fixing himself cornflakes for dinner and paying back the owner of the corner store for the sausages Poppo eats without remembering to pay. But how long before someone finds out that Arlo is taking care of the grandfather he lives with instead of the other way around? When Poppo lands in the hospital and a social worker comes to take charge, Arlo’s fear of foster care sends him alone across three hundred miles. Armed with a name and a town, Arlo finds his only other family member — the grandmother he doesn’t remember ever meeting. But just finding her isn’t enough to make them a family. Unfailingly honest and touched with a dash of magical realism, Sarah Sullivan’s evocative debut novel delves into a family mystery and unearths universal truths about home, trust, friendship, and strength — all the things a boy needs.
“In a novel laced with mystery and a hint of the supernatural, picture book author Sullivan (Passing the Music Down) creates a strong small-town atmosphere through Edgewater’s citizens, young and old. A quietly affecting coming-of-age story about finding family and confronting change.” —Publisher’s Weekly
“Sullivan’s debut novel beautifully balances the big issues in Arlo’s life with his smaller, more immediate concerns: his dog, an adventurous friend, and the magic of a wooden eagle carved by his father. The characters’ race is often left ambiguous, allowing readers to envision for themselves. Filled with heart, this will appeal to fans of Kate DiCamillo’s Because of Winn-Dixie (2000) or Eva Ibbotson’s One Dog and His Boy (2012).” — Diane Colson, Booklist
“It’s rare to find a quiet, reflective middle-grade novel with a boy as the main character, and rarer still to find one this satisfying. Eleven-year-old Arlo lives with his doting grandfather, but lately Poppo’s memory and behavior have gone haywire. Destined for foster care, gutsy Arlo sets out to find his estranged, mysterious grandmother. His true challenges begin once he meets her. With touches of magical realism, and a crime caper thrown in for good measure, this gentle book explores how every family has some question nobody wants to answer.” —Tricia Springstubb, Cleveland.com
Congratulations, Sarah and best of luck with ALL THAT’S MISSING! I can’t wait to read it. 🙂
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! 🙂