Friday, April 26, 2013

WHEN A FAMILY FALLS APART

Into each life some rain must fall, some days be dark and dreary.

 “The Rainy Day” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Some people may think his or her life is more like a flood than a rain, especially a child or teen whose world is unexpectedly torn apart by divorce. Depending on his/her age, a child may not understand why one parent is no longer on the scene. The child, even a teen, may believe he is to blame for the mother or father leaving home. Children sometimes keep their feelings to themselves. It’s not cool, he may think, or else he can’t believe what has happened and thinks Mom or Dad will have a change of heart and return. The child or teen might appear tough on the outside, but inside he’s possibly in panic mode. What goes on in a kid’s head, no matter the age, is hard to decipher. Even the kid himself doesn’t always know why he acts the way he does.

When parents split up, some young people survive without noticeable harm. Noticeable is the keyword. Many children are good at hiding their feelings. Others never recover completely, and their heartbreak affects their future lives. In my recent tween novel A Pirate, a Blockade Runner, and a Cat, thirteen-year-old Erik Burks deals with such a situation. When Erik discovers a lace bra in his father’s car, his mom freaks out and drags Erik from being the king of the hill in Texas to the bottom of the pits in South Carolina, where they move in with his mom’s sister, Molly. To make matters worse, Erik hears nothing from his dad, who doesn’t seem to care that Erik and his mom are gone. Erik, though, wants his life back and is determined to convince his mom to move back home. The big question is how, since she refuses to even discuss the subject.

Now, if a young person has friends to help him through the rough days, it will ease the uncertainty of the future, perhaps a little. Erik has friends at his new home, all right, but sometimes they’re more of a liability than an asset. The twins, Star and Storm, are a bit weird. Star reads minds and Storm … well, you’ll have to meet him to understand. It’s the ghosts that cause Erik the most trouble, however. Yes, he meets a pirate, a blockade runner, and a cat, all ghosts. While Erik still has to deal with the truth of his folks’ divorce, his new friends, both human and ghost, turn out to be the key to getting his mom and dad back together, or so he thinks.

But life doesn’t always turn out the way we hope it will and Erik is in for a few surprises along the way as he discovers what is truly important in life.

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8 comments:

Jenna Storm said...

Sounds good! My fingers are crossed for Erik, I hope he's happy in the end even if his parents don't get together again.

Leona~Author said...

Too many parents don't have a clue how devastating divorce is for their children. Books like yours are important to help kids see they can
survive and, in time, be content with the outcome.

I hope Erik's story has a happy ending for all concerned.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Erik thanks you, Jenna. :)

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

You're so right, Leona. Many parents think only of themselves.

Wendy said...

My parents split up when I was 20. It hit me hard and had an awful effect on my adult life, trying to juggle their visits at b'days and Christmas as my family grew and their grandkids came along. Right till the day my Mum died, I had hope they might be reunited. So, Beverley, your book covers a major issue and could be helpful to young people.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

I'm sorry you had to experience such a sad situation, Wendy. Two of my sons have been through divorces, so I know it's difficult no matter the age of a person is.

Thanks for your kind comments.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Sadly, the subject matter sounds very poignant for today. Love the cover.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Yes, too many families are torn apart today, Joylene. Nika did a lovely cover.