by Marion Dane Bauer
narrated by Johnny Heller
Prince Frederick, MD : Recorded Books LLC, p1998.
Joel and Tony have been best friends since they were small. Joel has always been the obedient, cautious one; Tony is a charismatic daredevil. Tony's latest scheme is to bike out to the state park and climb the bluffs. Joel doesn't want to, but what boy wants his best friend calling him a coward?
It almost sounds like the set up to a heavy lesson story, doesn't it? Instead, through a third person narration closely tied to Joel's point of view, we see a realistic boy who wants to do the right thing, but also save face with his friend. While it isn't necessarily the type of story I'd choose to reread, I can see why it was a Newbery Honor book.