Family is special and spending time with one another can create lifelong bonds! So gather everyone together by a cozy fire with this joyful yet heartbreaking novel! “All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook,” by Leslie Connor (Katherine Tegen Books) is a book about innocence, justice, truth and frustration. Perry T. Cook grew up in a prison (that is surprisingly warm and welcoming) with his mother Jessica in “teeny tiny” Surprise, Nebraska. There was not much space for large amounts of civilization in the town so it continued its reputation as a relatively small town. Most of the inmates adored Perry and helped raise him. Unfortunately, Perry suffers many hardships after his 11th birthday. He is taken away from Blue River Correctional Facility and into the home of his best friend Zoey, but also the home of Thomas VanLeer. VanLeer is the man who is trying to delay Jessica’s release from Blue River. Thomas believes Jessica and the warden of Blue River should be punished for allowing Perry to live there, in “unhealthy” conditions even though the inmates are nonviolent.
I recommend this book to kids and adults because of how it can instill inspiration into anyone who reads it. Many of the characters can be an example of what hope is and how to believe.
This novel demonstrates to the reader that mistakes only help people learn and standing for what is right is one of the best things anyone could do.
My favorite part of the novel is Thomas VanLeer’s reaction after he has a talk with Jessica near the end of the book. I considered it comical. The suspense this book causes is heart-breaking but you never know whether a hardship is worth it, or your hopes and dreams are ripped to shreds.
RATING: 5 smiles