Set in a world called Quill, where art and creativity are banned, the main character Alex becomes an Unwanted for drawing in the dirt with a stick. He is then sent to be eliminated, leaving his twin brother Aaron, a Wanted, behind. Instead of being eliminated, Alex is saved by Mr. Today, a magician who has been saving all the Unwanteds. He is then taken to the land of Artime where he learns how to turn his artistic abilities into magic. Can Alex save his brother, or will Aaron expose Artime and cause a full blown magical war between the two places?
In Michael Parker’s new novel, Joel Dunn Jr. tells the story of how he did everything he could to save his family after his mother left and his father’s tenuous hold on sanity unraveled. On a journey from the town of Trent, North Carolina, to the coast, Joel and his little brother Tank thread their way back to their mother, fueled by potato chips, Coke, and the soundtrack of the powerful soul music that their daddy taught them to love. Always keeping the faith that their mother is waiting for them, they move from one kindly stranger to another on their odyssey, Joel ever certain they are being guided to her door: “I was being passed from person to person,” he says, “on my way back into her wide open window.”
Caught between the endless idealism of childhood and the sobering tests of adulthood, Joel and Tank bravely negotiate their way through a landscape of love and beauty, abandonment and betrayal, to learn that the one sure thing is often right by your side.