Orbiting Jupiter (Paperback)

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Orbiting Jupiter (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews


With the cruelties of a Maine winter and never ending, but purposeful farm chores, this soaring novel tells the somber story of friendship, overcoming odds and love. Knowing 13 year old Joseph has done some bad things in the past, has a sketchy father, and has fathered a child, does not stop Jack and his kind-hearted parents to take him in as a foster child. With calm, determinedness Jack's parents, as well as his teachers, refuse to turn their backs on multi-talented, but troubled Joseph. This novel's emotional weight rests in the friendship of narrator Jack and Joseph, as Jack stoically tells the tale from his perspective. Schmidt's writing is concise, with a carefully chosen palette of prose. Heartfelt but filled with the sad human truths we sometimes don't want to know, a story like this doesn't come around very often. A magnificent read and one the reader will not easily forge

— Maureen Palacios

The 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 Here Joseph, damaged and withdrawn, meets twelve-year-old Jack, who narrates the account of the troubled, passionate teen who wants to find his baby at any cost. In this riveting novel, two boys discover the true meaning of family and the sacrifices it requires.

Gary D. Schmidt is the best-selling author of many books for young readers, including 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.

Product Details ISBN: 9780544938397
ISBN-10: 0544938399
Publisher: Clarion Books
Publication Date: May 2nd, 2017
Pages: 192
Language: English

#9 Autumn 2015 Kids’ Indie Next list *   "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   "Schmidt writes with an elegant simplicity in this paean to the power of love...Readers will not soon forget either Joseph Brook or this spare novel written with love and grace."  —Kirkus, starred review   * "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    —