Just a Drop of Water (Hardcover)

By Kerry O'Malley Cerra

Sky Pony, 9781629146133, 320pp.

Publication Date: September 2, 2014

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (9/20/2016)

List Price: 14.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

Ever since he was little, Jake Green has longed to be a soldier and a hero like his grandpa, who died serving his country. Right now, though, he just wants to outsmart—and outrun—the rival cross country team, the Palmetto Bugs. But then the tragedy of September 11 happens. It’s quickly discovered that one of the hijackers lived nearby, making Jake’s Florida town an FBI hot spot. Two days later, the tragedy becomes even more personal when Jake’s best friend, Sam Madina, is pummeled for being an Arab Muslim by their bully classmate, Bobby.

According to Jake’s personal code of conduct, anyone who beats up your best friend is due for a butt kicking, and so Jake goes after Bobby. But soon after, Sam’s father is detained by the FBI and Jake’s mom doubts the innocence of Sam’s family, forcing Jake to choose between his best friend and his parents. When Jake finds out that Sam’s been keeping secrets, too, he doesn’t know who his allies are anymore. But the final blow comes when his grandpa’s real past is revealed to Jake. Suddenly, everything he ever knew to be true feels like one big lie. In the end, he must decide: either walk away from Sam and the revenge that Bobby has planned, or become the hero he’s always aspired to be.

A gripping and intensely touching debut middle grade novel by Kerry O’Malley Cerra, Just a Drop of Water brings the events of September 11, which shook the world, into the lens of a young boy who is desperately trying to understand the ramifications of this life-altering event.

Sky Pony Press, with our Good Books, Racehorse and Arcade imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of books for young readers—picture books for small children, chapter books, books for middle grade readers, and novels for young adults. Our list includes bestsellers for children who love to play Minecraft; stories told with LEGO bricks; books that teach lessons about tolerance, patience, and the environment, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.


About the Author

Kerry O’Malley Cerra is a former high school history teacher who often enhanced textbooks with historical fiction to bring time periods to life. Just a Drop of Water, her first middle grade novel, was inspired by a deeply personal reaction to the tragic events of September 11, 2001.


Praise For Just a Drop of Water

"Cerra does a good job of re-creating the combination of fear, confusion, patriotism, prejudice and community spirit the attack engendered, and readers should identify with Jake's plight. A perceptive exploration of an event its audience already sees as history." —Kirkus Reviews

"9/11 reverberates in a middle-school boy's life, thrusting him into a bigger and more threatening world. This is history tensely told for readers too young to remember the moment when this century truly began." —Richard Peck, author of On The Wings of Heroes

“Tackling a difficult topic, Kerry O’Malley Cerra captures the mood of the country right after September 11 in a way that’s not frightening or sensationalized. This well-told, poignant novel about prejudice, school bullying, and best friends should spark discussion and capture the hearts of young readers for a very long time.” —Augusta Scattergood, author of Glory Be

“Kerry O'Malley Cerra’s Just a Drop of Water explores the aftermath of September 11th, but more importantly, she shows how Jake Green, a middle school track star, comes to understand how to be a much needed friend to Sameed Madina, of Muslim decent, and helps to restore peace in their neighborhood. This touching story is like the legend of the origami paper cranes, a symbol of peace, which states that if you fold one thousand of them, your heart’s desire will come true.” —Kathryn Fitzmaurice, author of A Diamond in the Desert

“Kerry O’Malley Cerra has written a novel that is both brave and true. In showing us the darker sides of ourselves when confronted with tragedy and fear, her characters lead us to the light.” —Laurie Calkhoven, author of Michael at the Invasion of France, 1943

"Just a Drop of Water brings this generation's young readers a glimpse of
September 11 that is both thought-provoking and real." —Caroline Starr Rose, author of May B

"Memorable characters bring to life a story of friends who, after the tragedy of September 11, must confront the darker side of their community, their families, and their hearts. Kerry O'Malley Cerra is definitely a debut author to watch!" —Christina Diaz Gonzalez, author of The Red Umbrella and A Thunderous Whisper

"Cerra does a good job of re-creating the combination of fear, confusion, patriotism, prejudice and community spirit the attack engendered, and readers should identify with Jake's plight. A perceptive exploration of an event its audience already sees as history." —Kirkus Reviews

"9/11 reverberates in a middle-school boy's life, thrusting him into a bigger and more threatening world. This is history tensely told for readers too young to remember the moment when this century truly began." —Richard Peck, author of On The Wings of Heroes

“Tackling a difficult topic, Kerry O’Malley Cerra captures the mood of the country right after September 11 in a way that’s not frightening or sensationalized. This well-told, poignant novel about prejudice, school bullying, and best friends should spark discussion and capture the hearts of young readers for a very long time.” —Augusta Scattergood, author of Glory Be

“Kerry O'Malley Cerra’s Just a Drop of Water explores the aftermath of September 11th, but more importantly, she shows how Jake Green, a middle school track star, comes to understand how to be a much needed friend to Sameed Madina, of Muslim decent, and helps to restore peace in their neighborhood. This touching story is like the legend of the origami paper cranes, a symbol of peace, which states that if you fold one thousand of them, your heart’s desire will come true.” —Kathryn Fitzmaurice, author of A Diamond in the Desert

“Kerry O’Malley Cerra has written a novel that is both brave and true. In showing us the darker sides of ourselves when confronted with tragedy and fear, her characters lead us to the light.” —Laurie Calkhoven, author of Michael at the Invasion of France, 1943

"Just a Drop of Water brings this generation's young readers a glimpse of
September 11 that is both thought-provoking and real." —Caroline Starr Rose, author of May B

"Memorable characters bring to life a story of friends who, after the tragedy of September 11, must confront the darker side of their community, their families, and their hearts. Kerry O'Malley Cerra is definitely a debut author to watch!" —Christina Diaz Gonzalez, author of The Red Umbrella and A Thunderous Whisper