In High Places by Tom Morrissey

This is the story of a father and son who need each other, love each other, but are not always there for each other. Escaping their past together brings them a new future.

Patrick Nolan and his father, Kevin, have enjoyed climbing together because it’s challenging. But life itself is challenging.

While he’s still young, Patrick’s mother leaves him with questions he can’t answer. When he has an opportunity to ask his questions to the right people, he’s satisfied with the answers. But he must try to convince his father, who is a stubborn doubter. Kevin wants answers too, but would rather climb to deal with his inner turmoil.

I loved the boy’s view of a budding romance when he meets Rachel. His perspective is refreshingly honest and still pure. The way Rachel tries to help Patrick made me see them as real kids. I believed the friendship.

Tom Morrisey’s novels make me think about why a character would do what they’re doing. He never makes me notice his writing, just his characters. Even though I probably will never climb the way Patrick and Kevin did, I enjoyed the technical jargon of the climbing world. It wasn’t so over-my-head that I felt left out of the story. Patrick’s rescue moment even kept me glued to the characters, not the rock.