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Groundwood Books

The Crazy Man

Written by Pamela Porter

For kids 9 - 12 years old | Published June 30, 2006 | ISBN 9780888996954

Cover of The Crazy Man

Regular price $9.95 CAD

176 pages | 7.5 in × 5.1 in
Print Format

Also Available as an Ebook

About this book

The Crazy Man

Pamela Porter

It is 1965, and twelve-year-old Emaline lives on a wheat farm in southern Saskatchewan. Her family has fallen apart. When her beloved dog, Prince, chased a hare into the path of the tractor, she chased after him, and her dad accidentally ran over her leg with the discer, leaving her with a long convalescence and a permanent disability. But perhaps the worst thing from Emaline's point of view is that in his grief and guilt, her father shot Prince and then left Emaline and her mother on their own.

Despite the neighbors' disapproval, Emaline's mother hires Angus, a patient from the local mental hospital, to work their fields. Angus is a red-haired giant whom the local kids tease and call the gorilla. Though the small town's prejudice creates a cloud of suspicion around Angus that nearly results in tragedy, in the end he becomes a force for healing as Emaline comes to terms with her injury and the loss of her father.

In the tradition of novels such as Kevin Major's Ann and Seamus and Karen Hesse's Out of the Dust, novelist and poet Pamela Porter uses free verse to tell this moving, gritty story that is accessible to a wide range of ages and reading abilities.

About the Author

Pamela Porter

Pamela Porter was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and she lived in New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Washington and Montana before emigrating to Canada with her husband, the fourth generation of a farm family in southeastern Saskatchewan, the backdrop for much of Pamela's work. She is the author of three collections of poetry, and her poems have appeared in numerous journals across Canada and the US as well as being featured on Garrison Keillor's The Writer's Almanac. She is also the author of a number of children’s books, including Sky and Yellow Moon, Apple Moon (illustrated by Matt James). Pamela's first novel in verse, The Crazy Man, received the TD Children's Literature Award, the Canadian Library Association Book of the Year Award for Children, the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People and the Governor General's Award, as well as several children's choice awards. It was also named a Jane Addams Foundation Honor Book and won the Texas Institute of Letters, Friends of the Austin Public Library Award for Best Young Adult Book. Pamela lives near Sidney, B.C., with her husband, children and a menagerie of rescued horses, dogs and cats.

Awards and Praise

Winner — Governor General's Literary Awards: Text

  • Short-listed City of Victoria Butler Book Prize, 2006
  • Winner Texas Institute of Letters Friends of the Austin Public Library Award for Best Y, 2005
  • Winner Rocky Mountain Book Award, 2007
  • Long-listed CBA Libris Award - Children's Author of the Year, 2006
  • Commended OLA Best Bets - Top 10 Fiction, 2006
  • Winner OLA Golden Oak Award, 2007
  • Winner TD Canadian Children's Literature Award, 2006
  • Winner Texas Institute of Letters Friends of the Austin Public Library Award for Best Y, 2005
  • Commended Jane Addams Children's Book Award - Books for Older Children, 2006
  • Long-listed Chocolate Lily Award, 2006