“…the voice of Stump, vibrating with emotion and intensity, is the main draw.”

—Kirkus Magazine


“Lively, first-person narrative brings to life Hershey's newest protagonist, Alastair Hudson, a one-legged 13-year-old with dashing good looks, a wicked sense of humor and an enormous chip on his shoulder… Depicting tragic circumstances and comic situations with equal expertise, the author offers a poignant novel populated with complex, memorable characters.” -- Publisher’s Weekly

—New York Times, Book Reviews

“There is much to admire... For one, there aren't easy villains. With Stump's parents, Hershey takes what appear to be types - the absentee father, the evil stepmother - and gradually reveals them to be characters of nuance and satisfying complexity. The author also has a convincing, lively "boy" voice and even better, a sense of humor."
Click to read the entire New York Times Review

—Ellen Jackson

“In this compelling story, a twelve-year-old boy, missing a leg since he fell from a ski-lift when he was eight, struggles to resolve the conflicts within himself and to deal with the anger triggered by his father’s desertion of the family. Alastair’s take on his life is sometimes poignant, sometimes laugh-out-loud funny, but always convincing. Observant readers will appreciate the subtle shifts in Alastair’s perspective as he comes to terms with the imperfect adults around him and learns about discipline, focus, and forgiveness. Hershey’s writing is both witty and profound. An engaging read.”

— American Cheerleader


“… a book that will leave you cheering on the main character until the last page.”

—Publisher’s Weekly

“Lively, first-person narrative brings to life Hershey's newest protagonist, Alastair Hudson, a one-legged 13-year-old with dashing good looks, a wicked sense of humor and an enormous chip on his shoulder… Depicting tragic circumstances and comic situations with equal expertise, the author offers a poignant novel populated with complex, memorable characters.”

–- Kirkus Magazine


“…the voice of Stump, vibrating with emotion and intensity, is the main draw.”

—School Library Journal


“The plot whirls to the climactic competition, an emotional maelstrom…”



Selected as a

New York Public Library

Best Books for Teens 2008

Finalist for the

Truman Readers Award

for the State of Missouri

Do you plan to keep the name Stump or will you go back to Alastair?

Here’s the thing about mothers. They get real attached to that name they picked for you back in your drooling days. Mom’s just never going to go for it. Neither will Aunt Clem, and probably none of my teachers or my principal. Skyla is the only adult that can get with it. She understands, you know? But, if I get on the swim team this year, it is definitely going to be ‘Stump’ with the guys.

You were really tough on your Dad. What were you trying to prove?

Man, you sound like that shrink they used to make me go to! But, I’ll try to answer anyway. I really wasn’t trying to prove anything. It’s just how I felt. If I’d been any way else with him, it would have been fake. Look, I already got a fake leg. I don’t need a gimpy attitude to go with it. The rest of me has got to be real.

Any plans to dye your hair again? How about the brows?

Just between the two of us, I thought I looked pretty good with black hair. And NOT like Sergio, at all, thank you very much. Bummer that Coach made me buzz it off. The eyebrows lasted for a while, which was great, kind of a vampire sort of look. I dunno. I wouldn’t mind doing it again. Maybe I can make some kind of deal with Mom. We’ll see—she may just go for it. What I’d really like to do is get a nice big tattoo. Maybe a shark with a leg in its mouth. How cool would that be?

All the girls are crazy about you. Any chance we'll see you on TV anytime soon? Maybe Splendor Town?

Jess has sworn me to secrecy or risk a painful death, but it wouldn’t hurt to keep an eye or two peeled, if you happen to be channel surfing anytime during Christmas break. I will tell you that I have no plans to stop the abdominal crunches anytime soon. (Hehe.)

What's the most important lesson you learned from Coach?

Oh, man, where do I start? I got a crash course in LIFE this past summer.
Not that I hadn’t learned a lot about important stuff already from Mom, but I always have to weigh anything she teaches me because, well, she’s basically a girl, and I need to grow up and become a man. Until this summer, everything I knew about being a man came from Aunt Clem, my lesbian stunt double mom. Not that she acts like a guy or anything, but she knows how to survive in the world. I need to know that.

Seems like I’ve had to take a lot of life lessons from people that weren’t doing it very well—my mom, my dad, and even Coach. I know you asked what was the most important lesson, but I’m going to give you two. First of all, I learned that you can’t go through life being really hard on other people. If you do that, you end up alone. I’m so glad that Coach didn’t spend his last summer all by himself. I drove him nuts, but we had some good times. The second thing he taught me was that I can do absolutely anything I want to do. You, too. You just gotta suit up and get after it.

It seems your relationship with Skyla got a lot better as the summer went on. Was that because of a change in you or Skyla?

This is such a trick question. I’m on to you now. Because you know that I want to say that Skyla is the one that changed, but it wouldn’t be true. She was, is, and always will be one amazing person. And it’s not just because she’s rich. It’s because she gets out of bed every day with no legs and finds something to be happy about. And someone to make happy.

Yeah, it was me, I’m the one that changed. How cliché is that?


How's that new prosthetic working for you?

The new leg rocks. If I have long pants on, you can’t even tell I’m short a leg. I went from an old beater to a Jaguar. Unbelievable.

Colorado or California?


You know, wherever my mom is for now. But after college, I’m not sure. I love the mountains in Colorado, and even the snow, but, boy, the ocean calls me. Frequently. It’s got me on speed dial, man.

The One Where the Kid Nearly Jumps to His Death and Lands in California

Razorbill

ISBN-10: 1595141502

Mary Hershey
Children’s Author
read excerptExcerpt_The_One_About_The_Kid.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0

© 2012-2016Mary Hershey. All rights reserved. Site design Donna Farrell

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