Bestselling author Gary D. Schmidt tells a coming-of-age story with the light touch of The Wednesday Wars, the heart of Okay for Now, and the unique presence of a wise and witty butler. Carter Jones is astonished early one morning when he finds a real English butler, bowler hat and all, on the doorstep-one who stays to help the Jones family, which is a little bit broken. In addition to figuring out middle school, Carter has to adjust to the unwelcome presence of this new know-it-all adult in his life and navigate the butler's notions of decorum. And ultimately, when his burden of grief and anger from the past can no longer be ignored, Carter learns that a burden becomes lighter when it is shared. Sparkling with humor, this insightful and compassionate story will resonate with readers who have confronted secrets of their own.
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by Gary D. Schmidt
"Christopher Gebauer's narration aids in making the opening scene of this audiobook believable. A butler shows up on the doorstep of 12-year-old Carter Jones on the chaotic first morning of a new school year. Gebauer gives a proper British accent and proud attitude to the portly gentleman and to Carter's mockery of the butler's manner. This is only the first implausible situation as Mr. Bowles-Fitzpatrick proceeds to transform Carter's home like an unmagical Mary Poppins. He reorients Carter's three younger sisters, brings the joy of cricket to Carter's middle school, and supports Carter's emerging feelings about his absent father and late brother. Gebauer's renditions of the initial repartee between boy and butler and their evolving tenderness are subtle and crucial. A wonderful family listen. S.W. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine"
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