Full of heart and humor, this coming-of-age tale is no small thing -- the tale of a boy's search for love and identity in the face of longing, abandonment, and uncertainty. When twelve-year-old Nathaniel and his two sisters discover an ad in the paper for a free pony, they can hardly believe their luck. But what will their mother say? Mom's been having a hard time ever since Dad walked out on them four years ago. But caring for a pony might keep Nat and his older sister, Cid, from bickering, and it would mean so much to eight-year-old Queenie. It takes some serious persuasion -- and a promise to use Nat's paper route money for the pony's keep -- but Mom finally relents. And so begins a year of self-discovery, as Nat struggles to deal with his father's absence; look out for his younger sister, who is "different"; and recover from having his heart broken by a rich, pretty girl from school. Life is not always easy, but Nat knows that Smokey, his very own pony, will be waiting for him at the end of each day. Or will he?
Natale Ghent is an award-winning journalist and author of the middle-grade novel PIPER, which was chosen for several "best of" lists in her native Canada and in the United States. NO SMALL THING was shortlisted for the Canadian Library Association's Book of the Year and the Alberta Rocky Mountain Book Award. Of NO SMALL THING, she says, "I'd been carrying the story in my heart for years before it finally begged to be put on paper. I wrote it for my family and for anyone, young or old, who has struggled for something they believe in." Natale Ghent lives in Toronto.