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Please Don't Come Back from the Moon    by Dean Bakopoulus order for
Please Don't Come Back from the Moon
by Dean Bakopoulus
Order:  USA  Can
Harvest, 2006 (2005)
Hardcover, Paperback

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

In this wonderful coming of age novel, Dean Bakopoulus explores the notion that we are a product of our upbringing, that our futures are shaped by our childhood, and asks, will the cycle repeat itself?

In a blue-collar town outside Detroit, there is a mass exodus of fathers. For reasons no one has ever been able to explain, most of the fathers in the town of Maple Rock, Michigan, one by one, abandon their families, leaving behind angry wives and confused children.

One of the fathers in the community, just before he left his family, leaves behind a note saying, 'I'm going to the moon. I took the cash.' From that point on, the moon figures prominently in the story, with the children believing that their fathers actually live on the moon because they all disappeared without a trace.

Mikey is one of those children whose life is affected by his father's desertion, though he is not portrayed as a victim of a negative childhood. The story starts when Mikey is a teenager and continues until he is thirty and has a family of his own. Mikey muddles his way through life, but his father's absence is a huge presence in his life, along with the lives of the other sons who were deserted.

This is a warm and moving portrayal of the effects of growing up fatherless and finding the strength to overcome adversity. It is a recommended read.

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