“Humor, often stemming from Roger’s lively antics, is balanced with serious, thoughtful moments in this hopeful story that explores the reality of hardship and mistakes amid themes of forgiveness and resilience.” Publishers Weekly
“Quietly and emotionally intelligent.” KIRKUS
A summer ant farm grows into a learning experience for the entire family in this lyrical coming-of-age story.
Harvard is used to his father coming home from the hospital and telling him about all the babies he helped. But since he made a mistake at work, Dad has been quieter than usual. And now he is taking Harvard and his little brother, Roger, to Kettle Hole, Maine, for the summer. Harvard hopes this trip isn’t another mistake.
In the small town where he grew up, Dad seems more himself. Especially once the family decides to start an ant farm—just like Dad had when he was young. But when the mail-order ants are D.O.A. (dead on arrival), Harvard doesn’t want Dad to experience any more sadness. Luckily, his new friend Neveah has the brilliant idea to use the ants crawling around the kitchen instead. But these insects don’t come with directions. So the kids have a lot to learn—about the ants, each other, and how to forgive ourselves when things go wrong.
Betty Culley is an American author who lives in central Maine, where rivers run through small towns such as the one featured in this novel.
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