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Were Jeff Kinney's Wimpy Kid to be suddenly bereaved, his next diary might approximate this painful but often funny novel, written by the author of the adult work Wolf Boy and illustrated by a debut graphic artist. Keeping a notebook, 12-year-old Finn Garrett explains in an early entry that a few months before, "a giant eraser fell from the sky and flattened me.... It's been erasing me from the world ever since." His father has died unexpectedly (in circumstances described only near the end), and Finn's black hair and pink complexion are gradually turning white (Coovert's cartoon shows a gray Finn looking into a mirror and seeing a vampire reflected back). As Finn remembers perfect moments with his father, avoids school as long as possible and compares his mother's and paternal grandfather's attitudes about death, he is made to see his pediatrician as well as a kindly school psychologist, who have their own theories about the "whiteness thing." Precise in his metaphors and his characterizations, Kuhlman delivers a study in coping with loss that middle-schoolers will want to absorb and empathize with. Ages 10-14. (Nov.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.