Mr. Willy & Arthur by Fairleigh Brooks

Mr Willy and Arthur by Fairleigh Brooks

Do you know what's great about tenth-grade English class? You get to meet imaginary people from the spectrum of human experience. You won't remember them all, but you likely do remember Boo Radley and Willy Loman, two men both hapless and courageous in their own unique ways. 

More than any other description, fiction can be seen as two words, a fill-in-the-blank, and a question mark - What if ____? And so, what if Boo Radley and Willy Loman one day crossed paths? They do in Mr. Willy & Arthur. 

The respective stories of Boo Radley and Willy Loman are about fifteen years apart, but no time machines are involved with this tale, or any fritzing around with spacetime. The author gives Boo Radley the unexpected gumption to break away from Maycomb to become an itinerant field hand, and he extends Willy Loman's life by a week or so, sending him back to Florida. In North Carolina the paths of Boo and Willy become one on, well, yes, a dark and stormy night. 

Both men have much to teach the other, and much to learn from the other. Both have known imprisonment. Boo's was imposed, Willy's more self-imposed. One has been free for years, the other will find freedom the only way he can. 

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