"I'm old enough to stay home alone, you know."
Mom said, "Not a chance. Who's going to lug the loot ba—" and the locks on the door sprung open. I opened the door and unloaded the cart. It took five minutes, probably less.
"Mom?" I said, looking around when I'd finished. I didn't see her. "Mom?" I yelled. "Mom?"
It's a few days before Christmas when 10-year-old Jake's mom slips and breaks her leg. For as long as Jake can remember, it's just been him and his mom, so with no one else to look after him the hospital contacts the gruff granddad Jake only knows through awkward twice-a-year phone calls. When grandad shows up, he's nothing like Jake expected. But as Jake gets to know his grandfather and a makeshift family of friends and neighbors come together around him and his mom, he realizes that this might not be such a bad Christmas after all.
With beautiful spare writing that will appeal to fans of Because of Winn-Dixie and The Higher Power of Lucky, Newbery Honor—winning author Audrey Couloumbis tells a story as warm and welcome as a cup of hot chocolate on a cold day and shows that the best gift of all is the gift of family.
About the Author
AUDREY COULOUMBIS's first book for children, Getting Near to Baby, won the Newbery Honor in 2000. Audrey is also the author of several other highly acclaimed books for young readers, including The Misadventures of Maude March (which was named a Book Sense 76 Pick, a New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing Selection, and a National Parenting Publications Gold Award Winner) Love Me Tender (a Book Sense Summer 2008 Pick) and War Games which she coauthored with her husband Akila Couloumbis (a 2010 Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People and a Horn Book Fanfare Best Book). Audrey lives in upstate New York and Florida with her dog Phoebe, and Phoebe's two pet parakeets Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.