A boy's friendship with a World War II veteran raises suspension but lasts a lifetime.
The year is 1947. Twelve-year-old Leonard Flint has been living in Canwood, Saskatchewan for two years. And still, he has no friends. No friends but one--William Dunn, a veteran of World War II.
Did the hairs on the back of your head raise when you read that paragraph? What about if I add that Bill lives in a hill--Sugar Hill--and that he doesn't have a "real" job--he catches wild rabbits and sells their severed back feet?
Do you fear for Leonard's life?
Why would a grown man want to be friends with a teenage boy? What is the nature of their relationship? Those are the questions that lead me through this at times disturbing, at times tender tale.
Rabbit Foot Bill is divided into four time periods--1947, 1959, 1960, and 1970. We watch Leonard grow from boy to man. He's far from being a hero. His flaws are glaringly obvious. Because I meet Leonard as a vulnerable boy, I hope for the best for him. When he meets with tragedy--fired from his job--I blame him for not living up to my expectations. Am I justified in blaming him?
Rabbit Foot Bill
Based on a true story
Helen Humphreys kept me captivated up to and including the tender final scene. And yet, I was surprised to discover that I wasn't reading this story I was blindfolded and was being led through the story. Or maybe Humphreys was a magician. All the time my focus was on her right hand when I should have been watching her left.
I discovered Rabbit Foot Bill through the book blog I've Read This