Reviewed by Carrie Spellman for TeensReadToo.com
Freshman Justin Martin is pretty sure all of his problems in life are about to be over. He's just been made the youngest varsity baseball player in almost two decades, he found a bike to take him home after practice, and all he needs to do to make everything complete is to sell Little Billy, one of the family's pet goats. He even finds someone to buy Little Billy for exactly the right price! Justin's life is golden.
Until Justin and his siblings find out that Little Billy's new owner is mistreating him. If they leave him they'll all feel horrible and guilty forever. If they try to buy him back, Justin loses his bike and his spot on the baseball team. If they steal him... There just doesn't seem to be a good solution.
Just when it looks pretty bad, Justin's long-absent father appears, and things get much worse. Now everyone in the family is thrown into an emotional mess. If Justin doesn't figure it all out quick, and get his head back in the game, he may just lose his spot on the baseball team anyway. Not to mention the respect of his family, and himself.
Justin's life may not be something you recognize, or it may be a lot like yours. Either way, the decisions he has to make are a lot like the ones everyone deals with. How will you deal with injustice? Do you give someone who hurt you a chance to explain? Do you let them back in and risk them hurting you again? How far will you go to get what you want?
This book is about deciding right and wrong for yourself. It's about choosing what kind of person you're going to be and defining your place in the world. These aren't easy things to decide, but I think Justin sets a good, honest example.