Roaring Brook Press, Hardcover, 9781596430709, 176pp.
Publication Date: April 4, 2006
Will is pretty much your average 16-year-old. He does well enough in school, plays in a rock band, chases girls with little success, and has a typical collection of oddball friends...with one significant exception. For as long as he can remember, he has been systematically beaten up--physically, mentally, and emotionally--by his older brother. Taut, gripping and at times mordantly funny, Vandal amply fulfills the promise of Michael Simmons's justly praised first novel, Pool Boy.
“The age-old question of “Am I my brother’s keeper?” receives a particularly thoughtful analysis.”—The Horn Book Magazine
“It packs an emotional punch.”—Publishers Weekly
“A deftly structured, refreshingly unsentimental, and witty analysis of the resilient, complicated bonds that connect siblings. . . . The character study of a bully who ‘was more than just a brute’ is nuanced, the pacing is skillfully modulated, and the conclusion, free of nostrums about catharsis and rehabilitation, feels touching and true.”—Booklist, Starred Review