Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Orbiting Jupiter by Gary Schmidt

Jackson's parents decide to take foster child Joseph into their home and onto their farm.  Joseph has had a lot of problems and by eighth grade, he has fathered a baby girl named Jupiter.  Jackson's parents and Joseph's interaction with the family's cows have a calming effect and slowly Joseph begins to relax and sees a more hopeful future for himself despite the arrival of his abusive father.  However, he wants to be a part of Jupiter's life and sets off on a dangerous trip to find her.

The ending of this book threw me for a loop.  I love Schmidt's writing and all of his other books have left me in tears of sadness and happiness but this one?  Not so much.  I had a difficult time with Joseph's - a 13-year-old - devotion to his daughter.  I also couldn't entirely swallow the love story but I think that's me bringing an adult's perspective to young love.  Despite those problems, I liked the story throughout until the tragic twist at the end which seemed an unnecessary part to add on to Joseph's story.