AUTHOR: N.J. Lindquist
DATE: 2000, revised 2014
PUBLISHER: That’s Life! Communications
Everything Shane Donahue does seems to work out wrong. He's failing his classes, about to be fired from his part-time job, and barely speaking to his parents. Then there's the real problem: his twin brother, Sandy. Everything he does seems to be right. He's a star athlete, student president, and parents’ dream child, with top marks, a great future, and many good friends. He’d never hang out with someone like Marietta, Shane's girl-friend. But since Shane's dad took away his car, she's been unhappy. Then there’s Ernie. He's a loner who claims to be Shane's only real friend. But will he hang in when the real trouble hits? What do you do when everything blows up in your face and you can’t even trust your friends and family? How do you decide what you really want? Most important, how do you learn to trust yourself?
The book is based on Proverbs 17:17. "A friend helps at all times and a brother in time of trouble."
Shane Donahue is a poster boy for teen angst. He can’t seem to get along with anyone, but he doesn’t really blame them. He can hardly stand himself. As his life spirals downward, Shane becomes more and more unhappy, to the point of considering suicide.
N.J. Lindquist’s portrayal of Shane made me care about this troubled young man. I had to keep reading as I hoped he could somehow find his way out of the mess he’d made.
The crux of this story is grace, the grace of God that transforms lives. I appreciated that Shane’s world was not immediately bright and sunny, but that he had to grow through trials and face them with the courage that comes from faith in a mighty God.
This book earns four and a half stars.