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400 pages, ebook
First published March 7, 2017
”The Bugler needs no alarm.”Nelson is the Bugler in that sentence, a thirteen-year-old Boy Scout who does not fail to rise before the sun. It is his duty at Camp Chippewa to blow the brass horn that will start the day. Doing so will win him no friends, this young boy with a sash full of badges, and a heart with a code of ethics. As much as he desires to join others, he is set apart by those things. Jonathan is the only other boy, two years his senior, a popular jock, who would take the time to address him, on occasion. But something is struck here between these two boys that will soon become men that will tenuously tie them together over the span of their lives.
”This human being she has parented largely alone-this organism-once so small he weighed less than a large watermelon. And how she carried him everywhere in those early years: to the grocery store, on hikes, around airports, to the farmers market, the library. He went everywhere, wrapped to her chest, his eyes staring up at her, or out at the world. How they were companions. Closer than spouses, closer than lovers, or friends. This little boy, falling asleep at her breast, petting her face, his fragile little fingers near her lips, her ears, clutching her hair. Her whole life, this boy.”No doubt Butler created these characters come to life on these pages at least partly from his own memories and experiences.