Don’t be fooled by this young adult novel. It may seem like it’s a story about baseball and motorcycles, but it is at its core a lovely, heartwarming and perceptive work of fiction about friendships, family, love and support. Set during the late 1960s and 70s, Of Sticks and Stones (Volume 1) mainly focuses on the adventures and ambitions of nine-year-old Libby, who moves to a small Midwestern town with her mother and brother when her navy pilot father goes missing in Vietnam. As Libby adjusts to the slower pace of her new environment and the bullying of new classmates, she develops an extraordinary bond with her grandfather Gene—the kind of grandfather every kid deserves! While Gene nurtures his granddaughter’s interest in two unusual hobbies, he manages in the process, through his words and his deeds, to teach her a variety of lifetime lessons about patience, perseverance, loyalty, and courage.