Wheaton, South Dakota, doesn’t seem like the place to reverse the downward spiral of Josh Cooper’s life. A drunk driver killed his brother two years ago. His parents’ fighting escalated until his father moved out. Now his parents are moving to Wheaton to help his grandfather run his farm as if somehow this will save their marriage. The distance from the suburbs of Portland, Oregon, to the little Midwestern farmhouse was a lot further than showed on the U-haul odometer. Gravel roads, a small-town high school, and farm life were radical enough. Still, a series of paranormal dreams transport Joshua to the distant past and a parallel life with an ancient family identical to his own. Except that his brother is alive. As the threat of imperial invasion grows, Joshua tries to reconcile how a girl in his new high school also appears in his ancient household. In the present, she helps him gain a place in his new life through basketball. In the past, they share the impending disaster of being conquered by a heartless enemy. Through it all, Joshua searches for the hope to carry him into a future worth living.
“Thoughtful, heartwarming, relatable to life, and just a downright good story, Cosmic Background Radiation weaves a tale of learning to cope with immense grief into an even greater tapestry of the stories that make us human. The pulse of creation suggested by the title lends a heartbeat to this book that keeps the reader turning page after page to see how pains, fears, and struggles, great and small, yield to love, hope, and redemption as a young man wrestles with life’s big questions in his own life, and in an unforgettable journey to the past.”
Adam Presler – Teacher and Assistant Wrestling Coach – Jefferson High School