“Dad had asked me to give him a hand, and that’s exactly what I was doing. I was fast becoming part of the fourteen-cent chopped meat special—which, I’m told, was not a big seller for the rest of the day.”
What would it be like to go through life with only one hand? That’s exactly what eleven-year-old Norm finds out when he loses his left hand in an accident at his family’s store. It’s July 4, 1946. World War II has ended, and life is getting back to normal. But for Norm, the pressing question now is whether he will ever be able to play baseball again. And what about his dreams of becoming an artist? Norm can’t even figure out how to tie his shoes anymore. How will he ever learn how to pitch or catch or swing a bat with no left hand? It’s up to Norm to find the strength to get beyond this roadblock and move on with his life.
“Quality writing and a protagonist who will inspire readers and convince them that handicaps are limitations only if you let them be.”—Voice of Youth Advocates
“Kids will be fascinated with just how Norm learns to cope, and Norm won’t mind a bit if they watch.”—The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“A light, humorous tale. Norm’s inner voice is generally calm, and his jocular exchanges with his friend Leon provide comic relief . . . An enjoyable read on the popular theme of overcoming adversity.”—School Library Journal
“A strong sense of purpose, leavened by generous doses of humor and post-World War II period detail, drives this story of a resilient middle-grader who demonstrates that having one hand is an opportunity rather than a handicap . . . This story offers both inspiration and useful information, deftly wrapped in an engaging narrative.”—Booklist
“Auch handles [Norm’s] emotions and those of his family and friends believably and never patronizes her characters or her readers by becoming maudlin. Moving and thought-provoking.”—Kirkus Reviews