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  • Strays
  • Written by Ron Koertge
  • Format: Trade Paperback | ISBN: 9780763643775
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  • Strays
  • Written by Ron Koertge
  • Format: Hardcover | ISBN: 9780763627058
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Could life as a foster kid lead to unexpected benefits? A teenager’s link to animals gives way to human connection in a smart, incisive new novel.

Sixteen-year-old Ted O’Connor’s parents just died in a fiery car crash, and now he’s stuck with a set of semi-psycho foster parents, two foster brothers — Astin, the cocky gearhead, and C.W., the sometimes gangsta — and an inner-city high school full of delinquents. He’s having pretty much the worst year of his miserable life. Or so he thinks. Is it possible that becoming an orphan is not the worst thing that could have happened to him? Drawing on his trademark wit and sharp insight, master novelist Ron Koertge takes the lead with this smart, surprising story about a boy learning to run with a new pack.


C.W. looks toward the screen door. "I was in this place once where the lady would tie off and shoot up while her old man made us paint the house. And all the other guys did was beat on me."

I look toward the big white front door. "What other guys?"

"This lady is not cooking for two when she can cook for three or four and make more money. That’s how it works, man. Where you been? There’s always other guys."

"Are they ever okay?" I ask.

"This is foster care, man. Nobody’s okay."


STRAYS by Ron Koertge. Copyright © 2007 by Ron Koertge. Published by Candlewick Press, Inc., Cambridge, MA.

From the Hardcover edition.

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