Dear Bruce Springsteen

Dear Bruce Springsteen

by Kevin Major
     
 

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Terry knows Bruce Springsteen is on tour, so he doesn't expect an answer to his letters.  What counts is writing it all down, and wondering what Bruce would do if he had a weird life like Terry's.

Dad took off and Mom has a new boyfriend.  Terry can't change that, so he thinks instead about saving up for a guitar and organizing a benefit concert.

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Overview

Terry knows Bruce Springsteen is on tour, so he doesn't expect an answer to his letters.  What counts is writing it all down, and wondering what Bruce would do if he had a weird life like Terry's.

Dad took off and Mom has a new boyfriend.  Terry can't change that, so he thinks instead about saving up for a guitar and organizing a benefit concert.  Then he'll meet a really cool girl.  Maybe.  

As he pours out his feelings to his idol, Terry gradually sees how to manage his own life and become his own hero.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Letters to Bruce Springsteen form the narrative of Major's (Thirty-Six Exposures, etc.) fourth novel. Having no one else to confide in, Terry, 14, writes to ``The Boss,'' knowing he'll probably never receive a response. At the book's opening, Terry is sullen and withdrawn, too upset to mention his real reason for writinghis father leaving the familyuntil the fifth letter. Terry scrapes up the money for an electric guitar and amplifier, and gradually comes out of his shell. During summer vacation, Terry joins his father, hoping that they can establish a closeness. After his return, Terry works on an idea to put on a benefit concert. By the night of the concert, Terry is ``riding high'' and infused with newfound self-confidence. He even initiates a relationship with Joanne, whom he had heretofore only admired from afar. Majors understands well the inner workings of teenagers and expresses, in an authentic voice, the turmoil and sorting-out processes that go along with growing up. In this eloquent, penetrating book, even the letters' closing compliments point to Terry's growthfrom an early letter's sarcastic ``Dream on, right?'' to a later one's cocky ``And I'm smiling too, now.'' Ages 12-up. (February)
School Library Journal
Gr 6-9 Terry Blanchard, 14, has a home situation and adolescent insecurities and problems that mirror those of other heroes of YA coming-of-age novels: his father has left home; his mother wants a divorce and is seeing another man; he loves both of his parents but is at odds with his mother; and he can't talk with girls comfortably. With no one to confide in, Terry decides to air his problems in letters to his musical hero, Bruce Springsteen, even though he knows that they won't be answered. The novel consists entirely of short letters that Terry composes over a six-month period, relating changes in his life. He writes about running away to see his father (who is living with another woman) and accepting his father's free-wheeling lifestyle. He vents his feelings about his mother's decision to remarry. And he tells his idol about the benefit rock concert he organized for a needy family and his victory in overcoming his fear of talking to girls. The short, easy-to-read format of Terry's letters, the appearance of Bruce Springsteen's name in the title, and the appealing dust jacket will attract many young readers. The letters, however, seem contrived and appear like diary fragments with the introspective reflectiveness of that genre, and they don't adequately communicate Terry's emotional ups and downs or the painful process of his growing up. By sketching the skeleton rather than telling the tale, Major has condensed an interesting story into a series of episodes, muted some of the novel's humor, and flattened out Terry's character. Jack Forman, Mesa College Library, San Diego

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385295840
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
02/01/1988
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
5.78(w) x 8.81(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

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