Have you ever longed for a “restart” button on your life? Maybe you wish you could erase every memory and begin life over. Painful memories plague you every day. If only you could start over…
Chase, a middle-schooler, has no memories of his life before he wakes up in the hospital with a brain injury from falling off a roof. He recovers at home, then goes back to school. Chase is told that he was the star of the football team, and the coach is eager to get him back on the field. But the doctor has ordered Chase’s parents to keep him out of sports for a while, so Chase joins the after-school video club instead.
He keeps getting this weird vibe that many students are afraid of him. As time goes by, the truth comes out: Chase was the ring-leader of a trio of boys that tormented, teased, bullied, and beat up kids at school. In fact, he and his side-kicks had been arrested, and had been doing community service at a local nursing home. His mother gently broke the news to him that he had committed a crime, even though he couldn’t remember doing it, and the court expected him to finish the community service hours, now that he was physically recovered from his fall.
Chase ends up really enjoying his time at the nursing home, and becomes friends with one of the residents, a Korean War hero. He also likes working on the video club team. Some of the kids at school think he is just faking his amnesia, others are convinced that he has totally changed. The two co-bullies don’t know what to believe, and keep trying to get Chase to join them in terrorizing other students.
I was totally engrossed in this story. Although it was fictional, it was a great book about the power of choice, and how we are all given this gift. What we choose will determine the direction of our lives. If we don’t like where life seems to be going, we can change. While we may not be able to forget the mistakes and negative things we’ve done, we can restart and move our life in a positive direction.