Last week, when I was walking to work, I saw people putting leaves on trees. There was someone on a ladder, someone in a raised platform, and someone on the ground, and they were all using wire to put fake leaves on a tree that had none.
When Cory, the narrator in Boy’s Life by Robert McCammon (Kindle here), is riding on a train with a man who looks suspiciously like Frankenstein’s monster, Cory thinks, “Were these three insane, or was I?”
That’s how I felt.
Cory lives in the small town of Zephyr, Alabama, in the 1960s, and he tells the story of the year he turns 13. His town is full of wonderful absurdities, his adventures are plentiful, and his love for his family and friends is strong and true.
I love a lot of things about this book. But the thing I love most is Cory’s voice. A lot of books use children narrators–children can ignore danger and logic in a way that adults can’t–but adult attitudes, vocabularies, and thoughts tend to sneak through. Cory’s voice is consistently strong and interesting, and he tells stories the way kids see them: big and real and exaggerated and in your face. “Writer? Author? Storyteller, that’s what I decided to be,” Cory says. And a storyteller he is. Continue reading