This young-adult book is vivid with imagination. Albert E. McTweed is a 6th grader with a problem. Albert’s parents have separated, and his dad has moved out. When Albert realizes his dad is gone, he struggles with the feeling that it’s his fault. Alone in his room, Albert can’t stop thinking about everything he could have done differently to prevent his dad from leaving. Just then, Albert hears a knock on his bedroom window, and who should appear but PJ, the cowboy from Albert’s frequent and vivid daydreams.
When the parallel worlds of Albert and PJ start to overlap, the story really gets going. “Partners Again” is written with a kid’s perspective in mind. The author has crafted a well-written, multi-layered and entertaining tale based on the workings of a young person’s imagination. The issue of parental separation is relevant and important in many kids’ lives, and this book deals with it in a unique way. There is even a glossary of some of the more advanced words at the end of the book, which is a great way to help young readers learn new vocabulary.
Although a large part of the story is actually taking place inside Albert’s imagination, the difference between fantasy and reality may not be clear. A major aspect of the plot does feature an organized crime network that uses violence. The final showdown between the good guys and the bad guys, although one of Albert’s daydreams, was originally quite violent and bloody for a kid’s book, but the author has toned it down to make it more family friendly. Some characters are also murdered in the story. We do award our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal to the manuscript, which is due to be published soon, and we do so for ages twelve and above. It is a read fit for the imagination!