But this one is a 5-star winner! I can't praise it highly enough! If you like beautifully-done audiobooks of brilliant novels, you absolutely must get this one.the book all over again, hearing my thoughts and feeling my reactions to Jim Sniechowski's masterful prose as he spelled out his teenage conflicts and angst about belonging. I never thought I'd say this about an audiobook since I prefer to read rather than to listen. But this one is a 5-star winner! I can't praise it highly enough! If you like beautifully-done audiobooks of brilliant novels, you absolutely must get this one. -Dr. Signe A. Dayhoff
An Ambition to Belong, second book of the Leaving Home Trilogy, is an astute and insightful psychological journey into the inner life of Jim, an adolescent who is trying to forge his own identity. Trapped in two different worlds, he belongs nowhere: at one end his Polish immigrant inner-city Catholic family and its Eastern European peasant beliefs and terrors; and at the other a late-1950s upper-class suburban Jesuit college-prep high school in suburban Detroit where he is totally unprepared to deal with that world of money and arrogance he finds there. At home, raw gut emotion; at school emotionless intellect. At home he is a member of The Royal Lancers, a street gang where his life is threatened by Donny, a psychotically deranged fellow gang member; at school, because of his dress, especially his Ford Motor Company issue black work shoes, he is perceived as a non-entity, a non-being who has little or no existence. Confronted with racism and a savage incident of anti-Semitism, Jim rises to find the strength that forms the first layer of his conscience and his conscious sense of self.