Owen Jester’s father has recently lost his job at the hardware store forcing Owen and his parents to move in with wish ill grandfather on the other side of town. Not only are his two best friends no longer right across the street, but Viola the know-it-all now lives next door. The only highlight of his summer so far is that he successfully caught the biggest, greenest, slimiest, most beautiful bullfrog in the world and named him Tooley Graham. Viola says he should let Tooley go. His grandfather’s nurse, Earlene, says that he’s a nuisance. Owen is convinced this will be the most boring summer ever. Then, while listening to the night train pass by below the house, he hears something strange: “A Thud. The Crack of wood. A tumble, tumble, tumble sound.” Suddenly, Owen’s summer has gotten much more interesting. Now, if he can only keep Viola and Earlene from discovering his secret and ruining the whole thing.
I really enjoyed this book. It brought back memories of hot, boring summer days in the country. Owen spends most of his summer stuck between wanting to dislike Viola and realizing that perhaps she’s not as bad as he thought. For Owen, it’s a summer of growing up and realizing that sometimes what you want isn’t what’s best for others. The book is fun and well written. I would definitely recommend this one.