Title: IT'S COMING DOWN!
Genre: MG Historical Fiction
All the other 13-year-old boys around have been working the coal mine since they were 10, and where has Mitch Thomas been? In school with the girls. Times are hard and knowing the three Rs doesn’t buy food for the table or seeds for planting, so Mitch defies his father’s wishes and signs up with his pa’s boss at the mine. Faced with dangerous and backbreaking work and the constant popping and creaking of the mountain, not to mention rats, Mitch’s courage wavers. Worse, Pa’s gruff cold shoulder dashes Mitch’s hope of growing closer to him and becoming one of the boys.
On payday, the only bright spot of the summer so far, Mitch’s ma and sisters are accused of stealing from the company by picking coal from the slag pile. Mitch stands up for them and lands himself and his pa in the boss’s office where Mitch watches his father cave in like a beaten dog. Later in a heated argument, Mitch calls his pa a coward. Now, with Pa and Mitch not speaking, Mitch feels more alone than ever.
When a deadly cave-in traps Pa, Mitch is faced with the stark reality of the life of a coal miner, the life from which his father had tried to protect him--every day you go in, you may not come back out again. Mitch must gather his courage, go in and save his pa.