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Some kids told lies to be special. Calvin told lies to be normal. The son of a missionary family, he looks forward all year to summer vacation in Portofino -- especially since he'll once again have the chance to see his beloved Jennifer. But even in this seductive seaside town in Italy, the Beckers can't really relax. Calvin's father could slip into a Bad Mood and start hurling potted plants at any time. His mother has an embarrassing habit of trying to convert "pagans" on the beach. And his sister keeps a ski sweater and miniature Bible in her luggage just in case the Russians invade and send them to Siberia. Dad says everything is part of God's plan. But this summer, Calvin has some plans of his own. From the author of Saving Grandma, this delightful coming-of-age novel will bring a smile of recognition to anyone who's ever been embarrassed by their parents.
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" 'Eloquently captures the atmosphere of place and period... Schaeffer describes both the pleasures and the occasional torments of childhood with charm and humour...The warmth of characterisation is matched by the novel's rich evocation of Italian life, and the accuracy with which it captures the nuances of 1960s manners' - THE TIMES 'Evocative, funny and wonderfully observed, reading this book is a holiday in itself' - GUARDIAN 'Not since Huck Finn has American literature been graced with a character as irresistible as Calvin Dort Becker' - ANDRES DUBUS III 'Poignant and hilarious...by turns, sentimental, celebratory, evocative and very funny' - LOS ANGELES TIMES 'Beautifully written with great insight and unselfconscious humour' - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY"From the Back Cover:
‘Some kids I met told lies to be special. I told lies to be normal...’
It is the early 60s and for young Calvin Becker, the son of embarrassingly over-zealous American missionaries, the family holiday on the Italian Riviera resort of Portofino is the highlight of the year. But even under the seductive influence of a Mediterranean summer, the remaining members of Calvin’s family seem incapable of ever really relaxing. His father’s always slipping into one of his Bad Moods, his mother will insist on trying to convert the ‘pagans’ on the beach, while his big sister Janet keeps a ski sweater and a miniature bible in her suitcase because you never knew when the Russians might invade and pack you off to Siberia.
Calvin’s dad says everything is part of God’s Plan. Well, this particular summer, Calvin has a few plans of his own...plans that involve such exuberantly pagan locals as Gino the whisky-drinking painter, the Bagnino and his boats, the very sensible and very English Bazlintons and – above all – their very lovely daughter Jennifer.
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Book Description Berkley, 1996. Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # M-0425149811