LaFaye, A. Worth. Simon & Schuster, 2004. ISBN 978-0689857300 pp. $17.99
I like books that use just a little bit of text to impart a strong message. Worth by A. LaFaye does just that. Young Nathaniel is seriously injured in an accident on his family’s farm in Nebraska and as a result, is unable to help his Pa with the farmwork. His leg badly crippled and his heart hurting even worse after the death of his sister and the loss of the time he used to spend with Pa around the farm, Nathaniel seems to shut down emotionally and boy, does he get angry. This anger and his bad feelings only get worse when his Pa adopts a young boy, John, from the orphan train to help with farmwork. Nathaniel’s mood plummets with the anger and jealousy of having another young boy around to be with Pa. But John has his own troubles after being orphaned when his entire family dies in a fire in the city. Slowly, John and Nathaniel find that they have a couple of things in common. They become worth something to each other and their relationship makes Pa see the worth in both of them.