Life in a town in the north of England in the 1950s can be tough on a lad. This lad especially. At home, his mum is always embarrassing him, his dad is not around, and money is scarce. At school, the bully is always thumping him, and his best friend, Tony, is put into a different classroom; the class scapegoat is always making him feel guilty. The one time he actually sticks up for someone, he ends up getting sent to the geadmaster.
No wonder he can't wait to swap. On the school exchange, he'll swap houses for a week with some lad from London. There, he'll get to live in a posh house, like a mansion, with three toitlets. "With a bit of luck," his mum says, "I'll get a nice young man who'll keep his room tidy and make his bed. . . .Now that'd be a grand swap." But when he finally gets to swap, he's horrified to find himself fighting tears on the entire bus ride,same as Keith Hopwood, who's blubbering behind him. Least he doesn't throw up, like Keith Hopwood. . . .
George Layton brilliantly captures the balancing act of one boy's eleventh year, when he faces prejudice and poverty and pride, and unwittingly discovers who he is. . .and who he isn't.
About George Layton
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Published September 22, 1997
by Putnam Juvenile.
Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference.