What do you do when your best friend's girlfriend makes a pass at you?
Erick Rudd isn't sure how it happened –– he did nothing but look. It was Nicki who made the first move. And if that doesn't complicate things enough, Erick is about to get some news that will blow his safe world apart: Pete, his older brother and idol, has fullblown AIDS. I'm a night kite, Pete once told Erick. I go up in the dark, alone, on my own, and I'm not afraid to be different. Nicki is a night kite, too. Together, she and Pete will teach Erick that sometimes it's best to keep your feet on the ground.
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M. E. Kerr is a winner of the American Library Association's Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Achievement and the ALAN award from the National Council of Teachers of English. Ms. Kerr lives in East Hampton on New York's Long Island.From School Library Journal:
Grade 7 Up Kerr's skill at characterization does not fail her in this love/family story. Erick is comfortable with his senior crowd, delighted with his girl Dill and his best friend Jack. But Jack falls for Nikki, an insecure fashion-plate who wants only what she can't have. Erick tries to steer Jack clear of such a troublemaker, so Nikki sets her sights on him next. Complicating his guilt for betraying Jack and Dill by seeing Nikki is Erick's misery over learning that his beloved older brother Pete has AIDS. Thus the horrified family finds out about Pete's imminent death at the same time they find out about his life style. The conflict between the Rudds' former feelings about homosexuality and their love for their son is clear, even in the face of the hostility that Pete's illness causes within their community. The book abounds with endings: the old dog that Pete had slyly named Oscar Wilde must be euthanized; Nikki dumps Erick, just as she discarded all the other boys she captivated. This is not up to the subtlety of Gentlehands (1978), but it does have the romantic complexity of Him She Loves? (1984, both Harper), and Kerr's fans will be passing this around among themselves. Anne Osborn, Riverside Public Library, Calif.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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