Even though Tommy Hernandez wins the state spelling-bee contest, he feels isolated and sad. His classmates either ignore or bully him. His only two friends are girls, more reason to be teased. Being Mexican and living with his grandmother because his father is in jail adds to the taunting.
Things get worse when Tommy takes the lead at the school’s Christmas pageant and one of his classmates plays a humiliating prank on him. Also, his grandmother needs an operation, meaning he may go to foster care for he cannot be left alone.
Fear, sadness and anger drive Tommy to do the unthinkable, and he endures a frightening night in the woods. Will Tommy ever find the acceptance and confidence he so desperately seeks?
About to wrap up his presentation, a noise above Tommy caught his attention.
His eyes widened, and his mouth fell open. A bucket tumbled toward him. He tried to scramble out of the way, but he wasn’t quick enough.
The splash came right before the bucket bounced off his shoulder. White liquid dripped from his hair and onto his robe. Tommy lifted his wet sleeve to his nose. “Eweeee…milk. And it smells sour.”
A few of the children screamed, and chaos exploded on stage. Some huddled together whispering.
Macy peered up. Beth and an older boy were in the rafters laughing.
Macy grabbed Tommy’s arm and pointed toward the ceiling. “Look!”
Tommy wiped the milk out of his eyes and glanced up. “W…what’s up there?”
“You didn’t see her?” Macy gasped.
The auditorium became silent.
Tommy gazed at the children on the stage then shook the milk off his wet robe. “I knew it. I told you Beth would do something.”
Links to purchase eBook of Tommy’s Amigo
North Carolina transplant, Nancy Carty Lepri was born and raised in Massachusetts, but also lived in Florida and Louisiana. Nancy earned an AA degree in Visual Art from Cape Cod Community College and a BA in Liberal Studies, with a concentration in writing from Western New England College. In addition, she holds an editor certification from Cape Fear Community College. Illustrator of several children’s books and freelance reporter for several local newspapers and magazines, her chapter book Tiny Angel was released in November 2009, and she has recently completed a sequel. Nancy and her husband Art have a grown daughter and a very spoiled feline. In her spare time, Nancy loves to read and knit.
Visit Nancy’s website at http://nancycl.webs.com. She is also on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/nancy.lepri and Twitter at https://twitter.com/NancyCLepri