Strays by Ron Koertge

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Could life as a foster kid lead to unexpected benefits? A teenager’s link to animals gives way to human connection in a smart, incisive new novel. Sixteen-year-old Ted O’Connor’s parents just died in a fiery car crash, and now he’s stuck with a set of semi-psycho foster parents, two foster brothers — Astin, the cocky gearhead, and C.W., the sometimes gangsta — and an inner-city high school full of delinquents. He’s having pretty much the worst year of his miserable life. Or so he thinks. Is it possible that becoming an orphan is not the worst thing that could have happened to him? Drawing on his trademark wit and sharp insight, master novelist Ron Koertge takes the lead with this smart, surprising story about a boy learning to run with a new pack.

About Ron Koertge

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Ron Koertge is the author of several acclaimed novels, including THE BRIMSTONE JOURNALS. Of STONER & SPAZ, he says, "My wife works with the disabled. One night she came home and told me about a young man she'd been working with. He had C.P. and a terrific sense of humor. Coincidentally, that day I had talked to a former student of mine who'd recently been in rehab for substance abuse. What would happen, I wondered, if those two knew each other? Two months later-the first draft of STONER & SPAZ." Ron Koertge lives in South Pasadena, California.From the Hardcover edition.
Published October 9, 2012 by Candlewick. 176 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Strays

Kirkus Reviews

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Sixteen-year-old Ted’s new to foster care, but not new to being unwanted.

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Publishers Weekly

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After his parents die in a car crash, 10th-grader Ted is placed in foster care.

May 28 2007 | Read Full Review of Strays

Teen Reads

As Ted acclimates to a new school and tries to process life without his parents, he comes to understand a self-reliance he never knew in his old life.

Oct 07 2014 | Read Full Review of Strays

Common Sense Media

Readers will find it easy to empathize with isolated Ted, placed in foster care after the death of his parents -- and find it easy to root for him as he eventually begins connecting with other people.

Jun 01 2007 | Read Full Review of Strays

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