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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 96

James Patrick "JP" O'Brien copes with his parents' weaknesses after his Grandma Mary dies and the O'Briens move from the city to a rural farmhouse. JP feels that his life is out of control. He resents people who his mother befriends and welcomes into the family's new home. JP thinks that she is trying to replace him and his mentally handicapped father. He questions his purpose and his relationships with others. His experiences transform him into a more loving and tolerant person who realizes that he cannot control life but can accept his reactions to change.

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