The Changing Season

The Changing Season

by Steven Manchester

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The Changing Season by Steven Manchester

This was supposed to be a simple summer for Billy: one more lazy expanse of time before college began. He'd fill the hours playing with Jimmy – his canine best buddy – going camping and doing all the things he promised Jimmy they'd do before Billy left. But that was before the accident that shook the entire town. It was before the summer job that turned into something so much more than a way to get a paycheck. And it was before Vicki. This summer was destined to be many things to Billy, things he didn’t truly understand until now. But it was definitely not going to be simple. An enormously touching, richly textured, deeply moving novel of new adulthood, THE CHANGING SEASON is an experience to savor.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781936558698
Publisher: Fiction Studio Books
Publication date: 02/23/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 583,380
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Steven Manchester is the author of the #1 bestsellers Twelve Months, The Rockin’ Chair, Pressed Pennies, and Gooseberry Island as well as the novel Goodnight, Brian. His work has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, CBS’s The Early Show, CNN’s American Morning, and BET’s Nightly News. Recently, three of Manchester’s short stories were selected “101 Best” for the Chicken Soup for the Soul series.

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The Changing Season 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Lisa McCombs for Readers' Favorite High school graduation is a rite of passage both painful and full of celebration. Billy and his buddies met the challenge head-on, ready to face the unexpected future. Parties were planned, summer jobs lined up, and the finishing touches on the conclusion of childhood stared them in the face. Mark knew what he wanted to do with his life. Charlie was keen to pursue a vocation in law enforcement. Billy was still undecided about what course his college career would take. As he delves into a summer stint at a local animal shelter, an unexpected idea forms; blurring the lines between right and wrong. When tragedy intrudes on an otherwise phenomenal summer, Billy is torn between doing the right thing and keeping his friend’s secret a secret. The Changing Season by Steven Manchester is a powerful tale of young adult consequences. At an age when we believe we know it all, Billy exhibits the first signs of adulthood while struggling to hang on to the last traces of his childhood. The painful transition into mature attitude is evident in Manchester’s story of spiritual growth. With young adult “boy” themed books a rarity, Manchester brings the reader a story reminiscent of the classics. As Billy mumbles, “They can keep this whole adulthood thing,” I was reminded of such literary greats as Catcher in the Rye and A Separate Peace. The Changing Season is certain to join the ranks of such classics. Lovely story! I really enjoyed it.
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings A recent high school graduate spends his summer finding out what is next for himself with his sweet dog by his side through it all. A little romance, a little drama and a lot of questioning the future is the core of this story. First let me say that I don't read a lot of YA, so having a main character right out of high school isn't my norm. I did enjoy that Billy was dealing with all sorts of things, the romance, the friends and the future, but I wanted him to buck up a little earlier in the book! I felt as though he spent a little too much time debating, contemplating and whining, instead I wanted him to make a decision and then read the consequences of that decision.
CMash More than 1 year ago
With his amazing writing technique, Steven Manchester is the master at emotional story telling of real life issues. He’s done it again! The Changing Season is sure to be another award winning novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
They’re always changing – seasons, that is. Spring into summer, summer into fall. Life is always changing seasons, also. Childhood into teen yeats and then into the adult years. As shown in this book, the changes between high school graduation and beginning college can be particularly trying as the teen morphs into the adult. Some young people have pretty much figured out the direction they are heading. Some just think they have. Then there are those who just flat out don’t have a clue. All three are represented in this book, but the main focus is on Billy who is clueless. The only thing he’s sure of is his love for his dog Jimmy. Hopes and expectations. Surprises and disappointment. Love and heartbreak. Confusion and disillusionment. They’re all here in this touching novel. Steven Manchester didn’t disappoint me. He never has, so you know I’m already looking forward to his next book. Thank you, Steven. ***A special thank you to the author for providing a review copy.*** Reviewed by sunny island breezes
Joey442 More than 1 year ago
Billy expected the summer before going to college to be the best of his life. But he was wrong. He planned on spending it with his best friend (his dog) Jimmy. He was also going to hang out with his buddies, Mark and Charlie. Billy still didn't know what to major in when he went to college and really wasn't ready to grow up. But life happens and he grew up pretty fast that summer. There was a horrible accident that one of his buddies was involved in, he found a new job and fell in love. As adults we realize that life rarely goes according to our plans but teenagers don't understand that. This story showed just how hard it was for Billy to grow up and face life as an adult. It takes us from Billy being a boy who played video games night and day, having no direction, to a young man going off to college not knowing what he wanted to do with his life. I definitely felt sorry for Billy because went through so many difficult situations that summer. As with all of this author's work it was very well written so that I could picture the events clearly. I not only smiled while reading this book but I cried too. I love the way he talked to his dog, Jimmy, about everything. Since Jimmy was his best friend, who else would he talk to? I want to thank the author for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.
HeartofaBookWorm More than 1 year ago
The Changing Season tells a tale of Billy and his dog(Jimmy), and two of his friends, Mark & Charlie. The boys are hoping to make some great memories over the summer before they have to go to College. Mark & Charlie have a plan, but Billy doesn't know what he wants to do or major in, but that decision will just have to wait because they have parties to attend and fun to be had! I just love how Stephen Manchester takes you right into the lives of his characters! I haven't really read a "Coming of Age" book before but I loved all the relationships Billy has and the lessons he learns during that summer. I laughed and I cried and just LOVED this book!! This would be such a great book for anyone really... high schoolers, those in their final summer about ready to head off to college, or just anyone who enjoys a story about a boy and his wonderful dog!! I totally recommend "The Changing Season"!!! You will be sooooo glad you read it! Thank you Steven Manchester for sharing your gift of writing such wonderful stories with all of us! Thank you for allowing me to read your book in exchange for my honest review!
Books2Mention1 More than 1 year ago
“A touching read that pulls you into an amazing story. Depicting real life characters and real life situations that we all can relate to.” “The Changing Season is an emotional and heart-wrenching story of a group of friends coming of age and experiencing some life challenges that affects them deeply.” “William “Billy” Baker along with his beloved dog, Jimmy, is in the mist of enjoying his last summer vacation before going off to college. He’s unsure of his future but realizes that he must begin this next phase of his life.” “Life changes when Billy’s best friend Charlie commits a crime. Billy makes the decision to stand by his friend. Making the promise to keep this tragedy a secret.” “Eventually Billy meets a young woman named Vicki, she becomes his first love. He goes to great lengths to demonstrate his feelings. His sweet gestures and undivided attention to Vicki is endearing.” “Ultimately, the past has consequences that Charlie, Billy and others will have to endure. “ “Once again, Steven Manchester has created a touching read that pulls you into an amazing story. Depicting real life characters and real life situations that we all can relate to.”
T-Bones More than 1 year ago
An exceptional read!! Talk about a story with a wide variety of emotions and perspectives, putting characters in situations that the readers can relate to and or put themselves in. Another title that Manchester doesn't let me down on.
WolfFaerie17 More than 1 year ago
Book exchanged for an honest review~ William "Billy" Baker and his faithful four-legged companion Jimmy are about into a different kind of journey. Billy is unsure what his college experience is going to be like. Billy has had Jimmy since he was a puppy. Billy and his friends seem to have it all yet lacking motivation. Billy thought his life was going to be carefree but that's not the case. Billy's best friend committed a crime yet refusing to go to the police. Billy's stuck between his best friend and his girlfriend. Can Billy start over ? Will Billy show his feeling? What is Billy' s career choice? Your answers await you in The Changing Season. Steven Manchester has a gift of storytelling that just can't be beat in my opinion. The characters are raw, real, honest, compelling, and down to earth. The story is a coming of age tale yet it's so much more than that. I honestly don't have the words to express how I feel about this book. This author is on my must buy and read list.
fuzzmom More than 1 year ago
Steven Manchester has done it again! Told with compassion, the heart wrenching story of young men and women on the cusp of adulthood, who discover that there are actions and choices that will effect the rest of their lives. Billy has responsibilities and an old dog, Jimmy, who has been a constant companion for years. He knows that his friends take chances that he won't, but he tries hard to stand by them. He meets a girl, Vicki, who hits him like a ton of bricks. This is someone he really could spend the rest of his life with. But he makes a choice to stand by a friend, even when it feels not quite right and he will have to live with the consequences. You feel like you know these kids..heck you feel like you WERE these kids once. You relive the moment when you realized that some things can never be undone. Some choices change your life..Forever. Powerful, haunting, joyful and painful. This is one book you don't want to miss and will never forget.
CharlotteLynnsReviews More than 1 year ago
The heart tugging, tear jerking, and emotional story of Billy’s last summer before heading off to college is exactly what I expect from Steven Manchester. The Changing Season is told by Billy but there are so many other wonderful characters. One of my favorite is Jimmy. He is definitely Billy’s best friend. He keeps him company when Billy is struggling with life decisions, dealing with heart break, or just wants quiet company. Billy feels that he takes care of Jimmy but I believe that Jimmy actually takes care of Billy. I should probably mention that Jimmy is Billy’s pet dog. There is more to this story that about a boy and his dog. It is a story on how not knowing what you want to do in life after high school is okay. Your life is not easily planned out and it will come to you when you least expect it. With Billy’s job at the animal shelter his eyes are opened to all that is available to him and what he truly loves. I like that he struggled with his life. Real life is not easy and Steven Manchester portrays this through Billy perfectly. It is also a story of Billy and his friends. How important loyalty is and standing by your friends in their times of needs. There is also young love found for Billy. His first girlfriend and he puts his whole heart into the relationship. I found it sweet how he thought of all the “cute” things a boy/man should do for his girlfriend and how he went about doing them. I am never disappointed by Steven Manchester. He develops his realistic characters expertly, writes his scenes with as much description as possible, and moves the novel along at a great pace. There are surprises, heart tugging, and wonderful life lessons to be learned from his books.
literarymuseVC More than 1 year ago
Billy was a typical Senior in high school, about to graduate, planning to go to college but totally oblivious as to what he was to study or do with the rest of his life. His one obsessive love is his elderly dog, Jimmy, with whom he shares camping and other adventures. Billy and his friends, Charlie and Mark get together frequently in Billy’s smelly, unkempt bedroom to play video games. They are quite content. Charlie and Mark have college plans for the future and are thinking of careers. Billy seems totally out of the loop – at first! The night of graduation, the key note speaker insists that the students will have to face the responsibility and consequences of their actions and decisions; Billy heard it all as more “blah, blah, blah,” never realizing his world was about to change. Billy accepts a job as an assistant in a dog shelter which he enjoys due to the help and conversations he has with a mentor there. She’s realistic without being preachy which clears the way for Billy to truly “listen.” On the other hand, Billy’s friend, Charlie, isn’t listening to anyone and he really needs to take advice. In a fit of rage and jealousy, he acts out a rash action which shatters the world of a family. Rather than tell the truth, Charlie buries himself in self-pity and fear. While that happens, Billy finally meets a girl, Vicki, with whom he wholeheartedly falls in love. She changes his world over the summer, but Billy is broken when an act of omission on his part makes Vicki drop him like a hot potato. One could say more, but this is too amazing a story to ruin by dropping plot snippets. Suffice to say, this is, like all of Steven Manchester’s novels, a terrific read. While there is a somewhat contrived quality to the story, one still roots for the major and minor characters and is always deeply moved by the challenges and outcomes therein. Readers will love and recommend this story of love, loyalty, betrayal and truth!
JerseyGirlBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Every once in a while an author comes along who writes novels that are so powerfully compelling, poignant, and thought provoking, that they pull at the heartstrings and stir the soul. For me, that author is Steven Manchester and his latest novel, The Changing Season. The Changing Season is a wonderful coming-of-age tale that follows seventeen year old Billy Baker's summer of change as he transitions from the end of his childhood to being on the cusp of young adulthood. Set in New England, the reader is transported back to a time of innocence, a summertime between Billy's high school graduation and entering college. Billy's journey of self-discovery will bring many firsts: first love; first job; first adult responsibilities; struggles with uncertainty, questions, choices, and decisions about his future career; the test of bonds and loyalty between family and friends; and the unconditional bond with his beloved dog Jimmy. In this summer season of change, Billy will discover the harsh reality and complexities of the real world through an unexpected tragedy and through his choices and decisions, and the outcomes will provide him many valuable life lessons, and ultimately help him transition into adulthood. The Changing Season is a poignant coming-of-age new adult story that will simply pull at your emotional heartstrings. Author Steven Manchester weaves a richly descriptive tale about Billy's journey of self-discovery interwoven with the special bond that he has with his twelve year old dog Jimmy. The reader will be easily captivated and drawn into this beautifully written and touchingly realistic tale. You can't help but get swept away and experience the full gamut of emotions as you walk down memory lane and relate to that awkward period in life when a person is at the crossroads between childhood and adulthood. Throughout this season of change, Billy's best friend / beloved dog Jimmy is at his side, and for anyone who is a dog lover, this is an emotional and unconditional loving bond between a boy and his dog that will simply melt your heart. The Changing Season is an amazing story that is written from the heart. It is a must read that will stir your soul, and resonate with you for a very long time. Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author / publisher in exchange for my honest review.
Heart2Heart More than 1 year ago
For any dog lovers looking for an exceptional novel about the love and loyalty of a dog and his owner, you will definitely want to pick up The Changing Season, from Steven Manchester. This is his latest novel that details the coming of age of a young man named Billy who is finishing up his final days in high school. He is your typical run of the mill high school young man. His friends are all planning on heading off to college with big plans of what they have always dreamed about doing in life, and Billy can't make up his mind what he should do or even what he should take in school. All he knows is his best friend and confidant is a lab mix who goes by the name of Jimmy, named after his Uncle Jimmy. As Billy struggles to figure out what to do, he spends the first weeks of that transition period with his friends Charlie and Mark whose all night video game sessions will soon become a thing of the past. They all have to grow up sometime. Charlie who has been dating Bianca for as long as any of them can remember will undoubtedly marry her at some point, at least that is what Mark and Billy believe. However during one of those final graduation parties when things get out of hand and the drinks begin to flow, Charlie has suspicions that Bianca is cheating on him. No matter how he confronts her, she claims they are simply friends, but Charlie won't let it go. He believes what he wants and storms off from the party drunker than ever. In one split decision, life will change forever for all of them. An unthinkable tragedy will rock them all to their core and all those college plans will go up in smoke as secrets are held back because they have all agreed to keep the loyalty they always have had. When Billy meets a young girl named Vicki, it truly seems like a match made in heaven. Billy begins to spend more time with Vicki when he is not working as his dog Jimmy faces growing older and the effects that come with that. He can no longer do quite a few of the things he used to but the one thing that remains is his undying loyalty to Billy, no matter how little time he seems to have for him lately. Life is about to change for them all and there will be no going back. I received The Changing Season by Steven Manchester compliments of The Story Plant for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation aside from a free copy of this novel in exchange for my fair and honest evaluation. I've read all of Steven Manchester's novel and each one simply gets better and better. Like all the rest, this will has found a permanent home in my library. His characters are believable because they contain flaws that we all have. In this situation for each person involved, you keep asking yourself, what would you do? It's a hard line to make the right decision if there is a right decision to be made. As a huge animal lover, this one really hit home for me, showcasing the unconditional love our pets always have for us and we can learn a lot from them no matter what we are going through. For me, this one hits it out of the part and earns a 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion.
GRgenius More than 1 year ago
This is a story as much about a boy and his dog as it is about life in general. Billy is a young lady on the cusp of his first big steps towards adulthood...COLLEGE! It's the summer before and his dreams of lazying the days away with his best buds, canine and human alike, are about to crash and burn. Quite literally, they do but not through his own efforts, more like a result of a non-effort on his part. You see, everything was going along fine until his best bud had an internal falling out with his best girl and his jealousy twisted to hatred. He made a rash decision influenced by the notorious rebel rouser "fire water" and in the end, lives were ended in many interpretations of the word. The fallout was huge for some, but life changing for all and it all becomes even more real as we see those burdened with secrets begin to crack. It's heart breaking for certain, but you can also feel the anger held by those in the inner circle and the contempt they have for those they feel lied to them. Did they? Some would say yes...others would beg to differ. They could say a kindness was being paid. They could say they were letting the lost find their way and bring light to the truth on their own. They could say a lot of things but any one of them would still not changed the final outcome. As with his previous works, there are big issues dealt with such as underage drinking, self control, lying, and never striking out in anger. We see the ill effects of bad decisions as well as revel in the joys youth and a summer day can bring. It was wonderful to see Billy grow in the few months we know him and when he finally found his future right in front of him, I couldn't help but cheer. The tough times he encountered and decisions he made were noble despite how they may have been seen by others, and in the end I think he did the best that he or anyone else could have. I was especially touched by the story unfolding between Billy and Jimmy. Go figure, right? The dog lover loved the boy and his dog story line. It's just it was so real, so tangible, and such a big part of BOTH of their lives. From his humble introduction to his attending his summer job with him despite his lack of desire to be there, the walks around the neighborhood to sharing a bed in companionship at the end of a day, it's all there detailing the life of a wonderful soul. Watching the years pass by was inspiring and heartbreaking with a definite need for tissues by book's, I'm not spoiling anything but preparing you for a touching moment. Overall, a wonderful edition to the growing body of work that this author has amassed. I for one am always psyched when I see something new on the horizon from him, and am only too happy to share in the pre-pub celebration going on now throughout the blogosphere. **review copy received in exchange for my honest review, full post can be seen on my site**
DiiMI More than 1 year ago
Being caught between adulthood and being a kid is one of the hardest things about being a teen. Graduation is more than a hallmark of growing up, it is a time of confusion, feeling a little lost and yet the excitement of the future is still there. What better time to have one last great summer with your best friend? That is exactly how Billy thought and he planned his summer before college with his best buddy, his dog, Jimmy. That isn’t how things turned out. Life happened, life-changing events happened and Billy will discover that coming of age can be as natural as it can be painfully difficult. Billy didn’t know what he wanted to be “when he grew up,” but a horrific tragedy begins to peel away Billy’s cocoon of childhood and the way he looks at those around him. His one constant was Jimmy, his aging dog, who was loyal, loving and gave everything unconditionally, he shared everything with his best friend. A need for money for college led Billy to a job at an animal shelter, the very one he met Jimmy at, kind of like coming full circle and seeing things from another perspective. Could this be his calling in life? Then there was his first love, another hallmark in a summer filled with them. Through it all, the importance Jimmy played in his life is heart-warming, the interaction and love between them is one of the most moving aspects of Steven Manchester’s tale, The Changing Season. Mr. Manchester writes straight from his heart to those he writes for. For many, it is re-living the reality of growing up, for others it will be a reassurance that their own confusion is not unique to them. Follow this emotional summer and feel the passion of a writer who knows how to connect on every level. If you are an animal lover, you will completely understand Jimmy and Billy as their lives are at different ends of their timelines, if you have never owned a pet, you may find yourself stalking a shelter. If you are human, The Changing Season will burrow deep into your soul as you recall the changing seasons of your own life. I received an ARC edition from The Story Plant and Steven Manchester in exchange for my honest review.
Tristate More than 1 year ago
Remember trying to figure out what career you wanted to pursue? Now remember your first love. Add in a moral dilemma of being true to your word or breaking it to ease someone’s emotional pain. From high school graduation until leaving for college, Billy in Steven Manchester’s The Changing Season faces all these situations. This summer will be the last time Billy will have daily contact with his 2 best friends, his family and most of all, his beloved dog, Jimmy before heading for an unknown future at college. Wow, what a summer! Mr. Manchester did a good job relating the emotional ups and downs encountered when transitioning from childhood to early adulthood. Whether you have or will experience these situations you can definitely relate to Billy’s challenges.
MissBethBC More than 1 year ago
In my humble opinion, Steven Manchester is one of this generations greatest writers and so when something comes out by him, it becomes the top book to be read in my TBR pile. I can't help it, his writing always speaks to my heart and leaves me with so much to think about. The Changing Season resonated with me as I could relate on so many levels to this tremendous tale of growing up. Like Billy Baker, I loved animals and I was carried on a splashing sea of uncertainty....what did I want to do with my life after high school? I never did determine what I should do, unlike our young hero, Billy. Another thing we shared was a strong moral ethic and a strong sense of loyalty to our friends. Billy was your normal teenager experiencing first love, a vile test of friendship, and a job he came to love and appreciate. The author could have taken this story in so many different directions, but I loved the simplicity of the relationship between dog and boy. The story could've been about your next door neighbor or at the very least, someone you know. This book is an easy read for those who love coming of age tales, dogs, and first love. I loved it. I am excited that it was my first read in 2016. It's a good sign for future reads this year.
Debby236 More than 1 year ago
Graduating high school, Billy is looking forward to his last summer home. He plans to spend the time with Jimmy, his canine best friend, and his other less furry friends, Mark and Charlie. But as it turn out nothing is as Billy expected. Everything changes with one horrific accident. Then Billy finds a new job, one that will give him focus. Finally he meets Vicki and falls in love for the first time. The one constant he has is the love of his dog. Billy’s last summer is turning into The Changing Season. He finds his goals and is forced to grow up and face the world as an adult. Some things your parents cannot do for you. At graduation, the key note speaker was correct. One decision could have life long consequences. They learn that their decision can affect more than themselves. Other people pay the consequences as well Billy’s last summer sees him growing up and becoming a young man. When he leaves for college, Billy leaves behind more than just his childhood. Steven Manchester’s The Changing Season is more than just a story of a Billy coming of age. It is about loyalty, love, disappointment and above all responsibility. On the cusp of his future, Billy and his friends learn so much during The Changing Season. This is one book you do not want to miss.
jbarr5 More than 1 year ago
The Changing Season by Steven Manchester Have read many of the author's other works and have enjoyed the places they take me to along with learning new things. This one does the same. Have volunteered at animal shelters by knitting blankets that adopted dog goes home with but had never been inside the buildings, Interesting to learn of what happens there. Book starts out with Billy Baker and his friends Mark and Charlie. Charlie just about grew up being his brother as they spent so much time together. It's graduation from high school and they've decided to head to college. Billy has no idea what to major in but the summer gives him the answer. He works at a restaurant but after school he finds a real summer job. He also meets a new girl and she likes him also. Charlie broke up with his girl and thinks Dalton is the problem and finds him one night driving home. Choices are made that night that will impact many others lives including Billy. Throughout the story Jimmy, love how he got his name, Billy's dog gives him comfort and support. He's even better than a brother as his love is unconditional. Love where the book takes them together as life goes on. Very touching story and glad it went this way as Charlie had other options that I was fearful to read about if he had choose another path. Enjoyed the local places I need to check out. I received this book from Net Galley in exchange for my honest review.