As another day on the farm comes to a tired end, fifteen year old (or close enough) Cooper Jewett and his grandfather finish the last of the chores and head to bed. "You're my first boy, " Grandpa says to Cooper and ruffles his hair and those are the last words of Grandpa's that Cooper will ever hear. It's a tough time when you're a teen with no parents, no known relatives, and 64 cows to milk and care for. But Cooper is determined to do it. He has some tremendously supportive neighbors who stop in to stack firewood and muck out stalls while Cooper is at school trying to keep up his grades. Those reports just don't get done though and Cooper's running times for the school cross team aren't making his coach very proud either. Is this just too much for one boy to juggle? Then, the really hard stuff begins. Someone has broken in to his house and rifled through all the drawers in the study. Someone else burns down the Small barn. A man running for President of the United States shows up at Cooper's school and tries to talk Cooper into being a face in his national campaign. Who better to have on your team than a parent-less kid who is nobly determined to carry on with the "family" farm? But, is it the family farm? Trouble, danger and intrigue are creeping into Cooper's life as one black sedan after another begins cruising by. What's going on? Why would anyone want to bother with much less threaten a teenage farm boy in New Hampshire?
224 pages 978-0312371494 Ages 12 -15
Pacing: Fast-paced Tone: Suspenseful