Brent Bishop is the sixteen year old protagonist of "Whirligig", a novel by Paul Fleishman. This is the story of the self-discovery of a young boy, Brent, who after accidentally killing a girl in a car accident, embarks on a journey across the four corners of US, to California, Florida, Maine and Washington to install four Whirligigs. The deceased girl was very fond of whirligigs. Along the way Brent realizes how self-centered and immature he was and grows into a mature young man.
Brent Bishop is always the new kid due to his father's frequent moves and tries too hard to fit in and be a popular kid. This leads to humiliation and a suicidal fit, which then lead to the death of a much more likable Lea Zamora. Brent readies himself for isolation (in case the judge sentences him to prison), yet is given an opportunity to atone for his mistake. He embarks on a journey to the four states mentioned by Lea's mother and along the way, new experiences teach him valuable lessons about life. Brent Bishop emerges as a new and confident young man ready to take on life, no longer with a desire to fit in.