Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 14 to 17
- Grade: 9 to 12
As an adult, it can be easy to lose track of high school friends who attend different universities or enter the workforce. After all, it’s a time when many walk away from one life and towards another. Running into an old friend can bring back long forgotten memories. That’s what author Robert Rayner reflects on in Walking Away where he weaves together different elements of his high school years to tell the story of Keith, an old high school friend he bumps into at a conference. Robert thinks back to one particular rough patch that Keith went through. After his principal “suggests’ he leave high school, Keith quits to enter the workforce where he struggles to fit in. Walking Away is a story about facing tough choices, discovering who you want to be and — just as importantly — who you don’t want to be.
About the author
A former elementary school principal, school district consultant, teacher and journalist, in England, Newfoundland, and New Brunswick, Robert Rayner now spends his time writing and teaching music. He is the author of three adult novels, nine young adult novels, and three teen novels. His stories have been shortlisted for the Ann Connor Brimer Children’s Literature Prize and (four times) for the Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award, and five of them have been included in the Canadian Children’s Book Centre annual ‘Best Books’ list. He lives on the Magaguadavic River in St. George, New Brunswick.