S. L. Rottman!
A book review caught my interest a few weeks ago, and I found that EVPL did own the book, and it was on the shelf! I checked it out, took it home, and really enjoyed Out of the Blue, the latest from S. L. Rottman. The story opens with Stu and his mom arriving at the Air Force Base in Minot, ND. Stu was born there nearly 16 years ago, when his mom and dad were both stationed there. Now his mom is returning as base commander. They are also returning without Stu's brother, starting his freshman year at college, and without Stu's dad, who is officially "taking care of his ill mother in Nevada" and unofficially on a trial separation from Stu's mom. The author, who has lived on many Air Force bases over the years, gives what feels like a realistic depiction of life on base - both the good and the bad.
Stu struggles with the changes in his family, and also with finding the line between keeping his nose out of other folks' business and stepping in when someone needs helps. I enjoyed the story, and really cared about several of the characters. In fact, I liked it so much, I wanted to read more by this author. I looked, and the library owns all of the author's titles. It turned out I had read one several years ago, have now read three more since Out of the Blue, and have two left to go. Here they are, most recent first, with summaries provided by the publisher.
Out of the Blue (Oct 2009) -
After moving to Minot, North Dakota, with his mother, the new female base commander, Air Force dependent Stu Ballentyne gradually becomes aware that something terrible is going on in his neighbor's house
Slalom (2004) -
Seventeen-year-old Sandro, having always lived in poverty with his mother in a wealthy ski resort town, finds his life transformed when the father he has never met suddenly returns and wants to be part of the family.
Shadow of a Doubt (2003) -
As his sophomore year in high school begins, fifteen-year-old Shadow joins the forensics team, makes new friends, and struggles to cope with the return of his older brother, who ran away seven years earlier and now faces a murder trial
Stetson (2002) -
Seventeen-year-old Stetson meets the sister he never knew he had, and together they try to make sense of their pasts
Hero (2000) -
After years of abuse from his mother and neglect from his father, ninth-grader Sean Parker is headed for trouble until he is sent to do community service at a farm owned by an old man who teaches Sean that he can take control of his own life
Head Above Water (1999) -
Skye, a high school junior, tries to find the time for both family obligations and personal interests, which include caring for her brother who has Down syndrome, dating her first boyfriend, and swimming competitively.
Rough Waters (1997) -
After their parents' death in an automobile accident, two teenage brothers are sent to Colorado to live with an estranged uncle, owner of a white water rafting outfit
I've liked all the titles I've read so far, but my favorite would have to be Shadow of a Doubt or Hero. Have you found an author that you really enjoy? Enough to read all his/her titles, and recommend them to others? I'm nearly out of S. L. Rottman books, and always enjoy finding a new author.