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Stay away from Shaky Man. Every kid in the small town of Tonkaway, Texas, knows that.
He eats little kids, murdered his wife, and mistreats his dogs, to boot. That’s what they say, anyway. Top doesn’t entirely know what to think about the rumors. He’s too busy settling into his new home, playing baseball and making friends—like Mickey, a black boy who soon becomes his best friend of all.
Everything changes when a shocking murder turns the town, along with Top and Mickey’s lives, upside down. Neighbors show their true colors. Shaky Man’s secrets are revealed. Through it all, Top learns again and again just how confusing and unfair the world can be. A tale of childhood set in the 1960s, Shaky Man timelessly reaffirms the basic goodness of humanity and the importance of friendship and compassion in the face of prejudice.
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WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT SHAKY MAN:
“Mark S. Parker cleverly intertwines the crossroads of curious, coming-of-age preteens with the sensitive issues of race relations and prejudice. Whether the era is the 1960s, when the story takes place, or today, the issues discussed throughout the book are ones to which many kids can relate. The characters Top and Mickey enjoy unconditional friendship as you share the experiences of prejudice with them, whether the prejudice is about color, intelligence, or any other physical attribute that creates predisposed beliefs about a person before getting to know them. As an educator and parent of young readers, I would say this book is a must-read in teaching our kids about tolerance and acceptance.“…
Maria Bellia Abbate
New York City Public School Teacher
Author of From Landfill to Hallowed Ground
“Shaky Man is about the moral implications of teaching acceptance, both for children and adults. This is a heartwarming story of a young boy learning to respect and love what is different in others, even in the face of negative peer pressure. This book will touch you where it truly matters: in your heart.”
Book Reviewer for the Midland Reporter-Telegram
Author of Observer: Ther Colonel George Trofimoff Story, retired attorney
“This book gives you an understanding of how life was in the 60’s. The old saying, ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ really comes into play in Shaky Man.”
10th grader from The Colony, TX