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Who We Are and Who We Become

Paul Burgoyne Author Interview

Two Seasons relives the two years that shaped the narrators life and explores questions of identity and belonging in a quickly changing world. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

One thing we all share is the need to belong, a need which is especially acute in childhood. I have uncomfortable memories of trying to fit in, believing I could make that happen through sports accomplishments. The story grew out of the sense of disappointment when my best efforts failed to produce the desired results.

Boone is an intriguing character. What were some driving ideals behind his character’s development?

Boone is not simply a sports-obsessed child, he is an observer. He notices when things aren’t going right but he has no outlet. He is a reader, and as an only child, books are his companions. They open his eyes to a bigger world than the small town where he lives. He is also curious and resourceful. When adults won’t provide answers to his questions, he keeps prodding for and assembling the scraps he receives into a coherent version of “the truth”. This question emerged: would Boone become insightful enough to take the steps that would help him cope with his life-situation?

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The most important theme was identity. How do we develop our sense of who we are and where we fit in the world? Does our sense of identity shape our choices or do our choices shape our sense of identity? By observing the life of a young boy struggling with a confusing family dynamic, I hoped to consider how family, friends, mentors (in person or in print), along with our own mental processes, help shape who we are and who we become.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I’m working on another novel this time focused on a young adult. I want to examine the idea of character change. My protagonist will be a fault-filled person beginning to recognize his failures and working hit-and-miss on becoming a better person. He will need a great deal of help along the way! It’s still early but I hope to have the first draft finished by summer 2022.

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Is it like father, like son?
His father is growing more erratic every day and 11-year-old Boone Martin wants to know – is it true? Like father like son? As his twisted family breaks apart, Boone clings to baseball, his one foothold in life. But it’s winter when his father moves out.
In summer, his best friend Rocky expects him to pitch Omak Little League to a third straight State championship – no pressure there – and former big-leaguer Lou Debrunes shows Boone a way out, the perfect curveball. His mother becomes more friendly with Coach as each game passes – is it Boone’s job to keep her trust issues from messing up a good thing?
Set in the fruit-growing town of Omak, Washington, Two Seasons is narrated by an adult Boone Martin reliving the two years that most shaped his life. More than a baseball story, Two Seasonsexplores the questions of identity and belonging in a shifting world rocked by the assassinations and anti-war movement of 1968.

Two Seasons


Two Seasons by Paul Burgoyne is the detailed and sport-filled story of eleven-year-old Boone Martin and his interior conflict between choosing his family or choosing baseball. His childhood takes place in the 70’s, but apart from his baseball dreams and loss, we also get to see the social context of the time and some family dynamics that are quite common nowadays. The kid’s dream is to play baseball in the big leagues, but he has to deal with his parents’ difficulties, moving to another city and his father’s non-violent riots against the Vietnam war.

Author Paul Burgoyne writes in a beautiful and quite descriptive way, giving us insights into the kid’s life and his emotions. His style gives the reader the opportunity to feel empathy and get a better understanding of the kid’s feelings. As a reader keen on details, I appreciated the quantity of details put into describing what the protagonist feels during different moments of his life. This really make you appreciate what a kid can go through and survive. Furthermore, the relationship between Boone and his coach and Boone and his grandfather Pop is a great moral lesson for those who go through loss, people close to him shared his loss and helped him more than he thought.

With its deep and touching themes and the lighthearted nostalgia that only childhood can evoke, this is a novel that will catch any reader’s heart. The book explores themes from baseball to loss to early-teen years. This is a stirring coming-of-age story that will speak to young adult readers as well as adults. I would also recommend this book to anyone interested in American History concerning the late 60’s and 70’s, along with baseball fans as well, and to anyone who has been through a loss or feels like they have an identity crisis. Two Seasons is an impassioned sports fiction story that surprised me in many ways because I wasn’t ready for how emotionally resonant this novel would be.

Pages: 284 | ASIN: B0995J4TYM

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