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Orbiting Jupiter Paperback – May 2, 2017
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In this riveting novel, two boys discover the true meaning of family and the sacrifices it requires.
Two-time Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt delivers the shattering story of Joseph, a father at thirteen, who has never seen his daughter, Jupiter.
After spending time in a juvenile facility, he’s placed with a foster family on a farm in rural Maine. Here Joseph, damaged and withdrawn, meets twelve-year-old Jack, who narrates the account of the troubled, passionate teen who wants to find his baby at any cost.
When Jack meets his new foster brother, he knows three things about him:
- Joseph almost killed a teacher.
- He was incarcerated at a place called Stone Mountain.
- He has a daughter. Her name is Jupiter. And he has never seen her.
What Jack doesn't know, at first, is how desperate Joseph is to find his baby girl. Or how urgently he, Jack, will want to help.
But the past can't be shaken off. Even as new bonds form, old wounds reopen. The search for Jupiter demands more from Jack than he can imagine.
This tender, heartbreaking novel is Gary D. Schmidt at his best. He is the author of the Printz Honor and Newbery Honor Book Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy; Okay for Now, a National Book Award finalist; and The Wednesday Wars, a Newbery Honor Book, among his many acclaimed novels for young readers.
From the Publisher
|The Wednesday Wars||Okay for Now||Just Like That||Pay Attention, Carter Jones||Orbiting Jupiter|
|Read More Books by Gary Schmidt||Gary D. Schmidt tells the witty and compelling story of a teenage boy who feels that fate has it in for him, during the school year 1968-68.||Gary D. Schmidt expertly blends comedy and tragedy in the story of Doug Swieteck, an unhappy "teenage thug" who finds consolation and a sense of possibility in friendship and art.||With insight and a light touch, best-selling author Gary D. Schmidt tells two poignant, linked stories: that of a grieving girl and a boy trying to escape his violent past.||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.||The shattering story of Joseph, a father at thirteen, who has never seen his daughter, Jupiter.|
"The ending is bittersweet but as satisfying as a two-box-of-tissues tearjerker can possibly be (in the realm of juvenile fiction, Schmidt is the master of the emotional gut-punch)." — Horn Book Magazine
"Told in Jack's spare, direct first-person voice, this story's style demonstrates the beautify of simplicity as it delineates the lives of its characters, each as superbly realized as the tumultuous New England setting." — Booklist (starred review)
"The matter-of-fact narrative voice ensures that the tragic plot never overhwlms this wrenching tale of growth and loss." — School Library Journal (starred review)
"A powerful story about second chances, all the more devastating because not everyone gets one." — Publishers Weekly (starred review)
#9 Autumn 2015 — Kids’ Indie Next list
About the Author
Gary D. Schmidt is the best-selling author of many books for young readers, including Just Like That; National Book Award finalist Okay for Now; Pay Attention, Carter Jones; Orbiting Jupiter; the Newbery Honor and Printz Honor Book Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy; and the Newbery Honor Book The Wednesday Wars. He is a professor of English at Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
- Publisher : Clarion Books; Reprint edition (May 2, 2017)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 192 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0544938399
- ISBN-13 : 978-0544938397
- Reading age : 12+ years, from customers
- Lexile measure : 740L
- Grade level : 7 - 9
- Item Weight : 0.014 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.49 x 8.25 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #7,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on June 15, 2018
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Top reviews from the United States
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As the above passage demonstrates, Schmidt’s tale takes place in the country. Place – e.g., the nearby river, pond, farm, and road to school – plays an integral role in Jack and Joseph’s story. More than just the setting, the places of the novel drive the action and characterization of the novel. Living on the farm seems to promise new growth for Joseph as he works to understand his past and hope for his future. Readers are asked to grapple with the idea of the country as restorative as they follow Joseph on a journey of redemption. Jack’s matter-of-fact approach to telling Joseph’s story reminded me of family story-telling sessions around the campfire and made my country heart feel at home in his world. This story of growth and loss is a powerful examination of all that makes us human and how place plays a role in shaping our humanity.
Top reviews from other countries
The narrator is the friend of Joseph, a father of a daughter at only fourteen, and who has his own serious problems stemming from terrible parents, an unthinking society and careless authorities. The foster family at the centre of this novel are wonderful which makes the cruelty from many other adults in the book more tolerable. The conclusion is both depressing and uplifting, which leads me to my only criticism - usually in these stories of familial despair, there is no neat conclusion, no tying up of loose ends, so this feels forced in what is otherwise a very genuine, realistic and moving narrative.