King believes he was born chicken. He's afraid of spiders, corpses,
loose cows, and just about everything related to the fifth grade.
If it's a choice between raduating or staying in the fourth grade
forever, he's going to stay put ─ only his best friend Frita
Wilson won't hear of it.
"Gabe," says Frita,
"we gotta do something about you." When Frita makes up her mind
she's like a locomotive - there's no stopping her. "First you're
going to make a list.
Write down everything you're afraid of."
Gabe's list is a lot longer
than he'd like Frita to know. Plus, he can't quite figure out
how tackling his fears will make him brave. Surely jumping off
the rope swing over the catfish pond can only lead to certain
death...But maybe Frita knows what she's doing. It turns out she's
got her own list, and while she's watching Gabe tackle each of
his fears, she's avoiding the fear that scares her the most.
With wisdom and clarity,
K. L. Going explores the nature of fear in what should be an idyllic
summer for two friends from different backgrounds. For them, living
in a small town in Georgia with an active Ku Klux Klan, the summer
of 1976 is a momentous one.