America, 1955. A sixteen-year-old boy is forced to leave home. Alone in the world for the first time, he's new at everything. He's working in the beet fields, running from the law, discovering the 'carny' life and learning to survive on his own. With a pair of Levis and money in his pocket, he thinks he knows all there is to know about life...until he meets Ruby.
Gary Paulsen grew up in the Philippines and has worked as a sailor, archer, trapper, singer, actor and carnival worker, amongst others. He is the author of many critically acclaimed books for young people, and has won the prestigious Newbery Honor Award three times, for his books The Winter Room, Hatchet and Dogsong. He lives in New Mexico and on a boat in the Pacific, with his wife, the painter Ruth Wright Paulsen.