Cover image for Back
Publication Information:
Victoria, British Columbia ; Custer, Washington : Orca Book Publishers, 2009.

Physical Description:
1 online resource (109 pages)
Target Audience:
HL 700 L
Orca soundings
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader Grades 9-12 4.3 2 Quiz 129683 English fiction.
Lexile Measure:
Local Note:
Electronic reproduction. Ann Arbor, MI : ProQuest, 2015. Available via World Wide Web. Access may be limited to ProQuest affiliated libraries.


Material Type
Shelf Number

On Order



Jojo's back, released from jail, and people are tense and afraid all over again. They wonder if they'll be walking down the street one day and they'll run into Jojo and Jojo will give them attitude or shove them around, just for fun. Those people just wish Jojo would go away and never come back. Then there are the people who wish something bad would happen to Jojo. Something really bad. Ardell Withrow is one of those people.

Reviews 2

Horn Book Review

The notorious Jojo is released from prison and returns home. He's trying to get on with his life, but no one can believe he's changed. Ardell, whose brother is in a coma because of Jojo, hopes to drive him out of the neighborhood and ultimately takes justice into his own hands. This well-paced, provocative story effectively questions right and wrong. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

When is forgiveness not acceptable? That's the question McClintock seems to be posing in this brief but moving novel. It's the story of Jojo, an ex-thug returned home after serving two years in prison. No one on the block is happy to see him again, least of all Ardell, the brother of the boy Jojo beat with a crowbar. But Jojo seems to have reformed he is quiet, deferential, and stays home to care for his ailing mother. Rallied by Ardell, the neighborhood begins to seal itself off from Jojo, not even allowing him to buy items at the corner store or call a taxi to take his mother to the doctor. Violence seems inevitable, and is, yet this doomed predestination lends a tragic power to an otherwise slim narrative. McClintock's boldest stroke is to tell the story from the point of view of an unnamed (and ungendered) child whose proximity allows him or her access to the inscrutable half-lives observable from people's porches and sidewalks. Perfect for reluctant readers up for some soul-searching.--Kraus, Daniel Copyright 2009 Booklist



There are a lot of people who can't believe that Jojo has the nerve to come back to our neighborhood. There are more people who don't want him around. Things haven't exactly been peaceful since he went away. Things are never peaceful in my neighborhood. But at least people haven't worried about Jojo for the past two years. Excerpted from Back by Norah McClintock All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.