A great story! I don't think that Avi is capable of writing a bad book :)
There'sno reasoning with Owen.The island cottage where he and his family have spent the last ten summers must be preserved.And he's going to do it. Never mind that bulldozer stands outside, ready to move in and level the place for a modern hotel. Never mind that summer's over and Owen's family is hurrying to catch the last ferry -- or that school is starting -- or that nobody sees it his way. Alone, fourteen-year-old Owen is going to stay and save the beautiful place others call ugly.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Of course Dylan Thomas was raging against death but in this book, Owen is raging against having to grow up. Overtly, losing the house he's spent summer vacations in, but also losing his summers with family as his older siblings grow up and go their own ways. When he finds out that this is to be his last summer in the ugly old beach house his family has rented, he refuses to accept it. Staying on when the rest of his family leaves and doing all that he can to preserve it.
While there are many many Bildungsroman novels already out there, this one has unique perspective in that it that really lets the reader in on what is lost and concentrates very little on what is gained.
There are those that will love this and those that will hate this but I suggest that you read it and decide for yourself. It's well written and though Owen is at times very immature, one cannot help but feel his pain, his sense of powerlessness and his total sense of unpreparedness for what is to come. It's a good thing to be reminded of these feelings from time to time.