It is 1965, and 12-year-old Emaline, living on a wheat farm, must deal with a family that is falling apart. When her dog, Prince, chases a hare into the path of the tractor, she chases after him, and her father accidentally runs over her leg with the machine, leaving her with a long convalescence and a permanent disability. Even worse, from Emaline’s point of view, is that in his grief and guilt, her father shoots Prince and leaves Emaline and her mother on their own.
Despite the neighbors’ disapproval, Emaline’s mother hires Angus, a patient from the local mental hospital, to work their fields. Angus is a red-haired giant whom the local children tease and call "the gorilla." Though the small town’s prejudice creates a cloud of suspicion around Angus that nearly results in tragedy, he just may hold the key to Emaline's coming to grips with her injury and the loss of her father.
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""Pamela Porter was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and she lived in New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Washington and Montana before emigrating to Canada with her husband, the fourth generation of a farm family in southeastern Saskatchewan, the backdrop for much of Pamela's work. She is the author of three collections of poetry, and her poems have appeared in numerous journals across Canada and the US as well as being featured on Garrison Keillor's The Writer's Almanac. She is also the author of a number of children's books, including Sky and Yellow Moon, Apple Moon (illustrated by Matt James). Pamela's first novel in verse, The Crazy Man, received the TD Children's Literature Award, the Canadian Library Association Book of the Year Award for Children, the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People and the Governor General's Award, as well as several children's choice awards. It was also named a Jane Addams Foundation Honor Book and won the Texas Institute of Letters, Friends of the Austin Public Library Award for Best Young Adult Book. Pamela lives near Sidney, B.C., with her husband, children and a menagerie of rescued horses, dogs and cats.""From School Library Journal:
Grade 5 Up–This beautifully written novel in verse tells the story of a 12-year-old girl struggling to recover after a freak farm accident leaves her partially crippled and fatherless. Her dad, after shooting the dog that he blames for the tractor mishap, walks out on her and her mother, leaving them to tend the farm by themselves. After a long and painful hospital stay, Emaline returns home to a distraught mother who doesn't have any help sowing the fields. When several conventional plans fall through, the woman decides to bring in a patient from the local mental hospital to drive the tractor and sow the fields. Angus, a gentle giant, slowly gains the trust of Emaline and her mother through his hard work and his kindness to people and animals alike. Despite the town's grumblings about how dangerous Angus must be, he is allowed to continue working on the farm, but not without enduring much cruelty from neighbors and townspeople. It is only when he performs the ultimate act of heroism that others in the town finally recognize Angus's worth as a human being. Emaline is a rich character full of conflicting emotions about her father, her mother, and her strange new family. Subtle in its themes and organization, this book is pure pleasure, offering lessons about love, loyalty, and loss.–Julie Webb, Shelby County High School, Shelbyville, KY
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Book Description Groundwood Books, 2005. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0888996942
Book Description Groundwood Books, 2005. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110888996942