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by William B. Hardison, Jr. $28.95
written by William B. Hardison, Jr. illustrated by Candice Smith Grandpa says it best. He always does: “Knowin’ where you came from makes you part of somethin’ larger’n yerself—and from yer beginnin’, you were meant t’ be larger’n yerself.” For young Billy, summer means saying goodbye to city life and traveling seven hundred miles to visit his grandparents on their Tennessee farm. It means long, humid days of snapping beans, milking cows, hunting for fossils in rocky fields, and trips into town for ice-cream sodas and comic books at the five-and-dime. It means muggy nights spent on the front porch with family, the boys gathered around the big Philco radio, listening to The Lone Ranger over the low hum of crickets. But most of all, summer means time spent in the long shadow of Grandpa, a massive Welchman, keenly observant, frugal of words and actions, but rich in experience and country wisdom. On this remote patch of farmland, Grandpa’s word is law. Now, William Hardison looks back on those summer days with nostalgic fondness and his own hard-earned wisdom. In doing so, he rediscovers deeper lessons hidden within the adventures he so often took for granted as an energetic child. And along the way, he invites you to ponder: When you look back on your childhood, what long-forgotten treasures might you unearth?