Fraustino, Lisa Rowe. The Hole in the Wall.
Published November 8, 2010. ARC received from Blue Slip Media.
Sebastian lives a difficult life in the hills of Pennsylvania. His father drinks too much, his mother worries, and everyone smokes. The house they live in was not in good shape, but now that the Odum company is strip mining, the foundation is settling more, the water is of suspect quality, and even the coats in their closet mildew. Jed, Sebastian's brother, ran away because he couldn't deal with things anymore. Sebby tries his best to look on the bright side, but he's having trouble in school, wearing out his shoes, and to top it all off, the family chickens, who provide the money for the rare moments of fun in the family, are laying rock hard eggs.
This is where things start to get strange. When Sebby's mother makes cookies out of the eggs, they turn rock hard, too, and eating the raw cookie dough does horrible things to Sebby's stomach. When Sebby and his sister Barbie try to find out what is causing all of these problems, they get drawn into a cover-up of a pending environmental disaster engineered by the owner of the Odum company. In the end, the children save the day, and begin to restore their community, as well as their family.
This book will be popular with students who like problem novels, and the environmental message is strong. There is a fair amount of action toward the end. It was an interesting book, and I will look for more books by this author.
Here is a link to a You Tube Video that one of Dr. Fraustino's students created:
Dr. Fraustino has also graciously included me on her blog tour, and I have brilliantly LOST her interview answers! I am going to blame the children for this one, since I know I had them saved on the computer at home.
There's a great guest post from this author over at
Outrageously Wonderful Literature From the Middle Grades
as well as a nice review over at A Journey of a Bookseller and Bookworming in the 21st Century, both of whom are WAY more organized than yours truly! Watch this space for more on this new book coming out in a few days!