Cleary treats the contemporary issues of divorce and single parenthood with sympathy and realism. She makes clear that even though Leigh longs for his parents to get back together, they never will. For a while, Leigh hates his father. His father has left him, seemingly has forgotten him, and even has a new boy in his life. But after he calms down, Leigh admits, "I don't hate my father either. I can't hate him. Maybe things would be easier if I could." He learns to love his father for his good qualities and to accept both the imperfect man and the divorce.
Cleary portrays Leigh's...
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