Today, I’m happy to be participating in a blog tour for the YA book The Priest and The Peaches. I was lucky enough to get to review the book, which will be today’s post. Stay tuned tomorrow when Mr. Peterson will be taking over my blog with a guest post to give us an idea of what makes him tick. You can see all the other tour stops he’ll be making here.
The Priest and the Peaches follows the story of the Peach children. They’re orphaned when their father suddenly passes away from complications of a drinking problem. The two oldest siblings must sort out the debts left behind while figuring out how to keep the family together and provided for. Their situation is complicated by nosy neighbor Beatrice Amon. She lives in the same building with them and has a history of making calls to CPS on others in the neighborhood. From the moment Velemer Peach dies she sets her sights on the children, convinced they’re going to start running wild without parental supervision.
What really stuck out to me was the use of religion in the story. The Catholic Peach family receives guidance and assistance from Father Sullivan, the priest at their church throughout the novel. Father Sullivan preaches a kinder, gentler religion based on God’s love and forgiveness. The theme is further reinforced by references to the late Velemer’s favorite phrase, “LYN” (Love Your Neighbor). The kindness of others and Father Sullivan’s common-sense guidance is also seen throughout.
While I found some of the dialogue to be repetitive, Mr. Peterson fills the story with believable characters, reactions and emotions that you feel yourself. You can relate to the fear experienced by Teddy and Joanie as they try to figure out how they’re going to support their siblings admist a growing rebellion by kids who are balking at the idea of obeying them. You also relate to the youngest Peach’s fear and need to be reassured when his world has fallen apart around him. Overall the book is an entertaining read that will teach younger audiences the power of forgiveness and paying it forward.
Larry Peterson was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. A former Metal Lather/Reinforcing Iron-worker, he left that business after coming down with MS. He, his wife and three kids moved to Florida 30 years ago. Larry began doing freelance newspaper commentary after graduating from Tampa College in 1984.
His first children’s picture book, Slippery Willie’s Stupid, Ugly Shoes was published in 2011. In 2012, his full length novel, The Priest and the Peaches was released and he is presently working on the sequel.
He also has a blog where he posts weekly commentary. He lives in Pinellas Park, Florida and his kids and six grandchildren all live within three miles of each other.
LARRY PETERSON AND TRIBUTE BOOKS ONLINE:
PRIEST AND THE PEACHES DESCRIPTION AND BUY LINKS:
Historical fiction novel set in the Bronx in the mid-1960s
ISBN: 978-0-9837418-4-8 ISBN: 978-1-4658-6327-0
Release: January 1, 2012