Hardcover, 160 pages
Expected publication: April 5th 2016 by HMH Books for Young Readers
Source: ARC from Raincoast Books
Weekends with Max and His Dad is one of those heartwarming books you give to a child when his/her/their parents are divorcing. The book is a very gentle way to approach the situation without putting too much stress on the divorce aspect. Max is just told that instead of one home, he now has two and though he doesn’t actually accept it all without qualms, Urban shows the gradual understanding and acceptance that takes place between Max and his father.
Without going into details about the divorce and separation, Urban shows how Max and his father spend time together and make his empty apartment a home in which they both can grow and move on. I really loved the subtle little details such as how the rest of the apartment except for Max’s new room is still full of moving boxes and not yet unpacked. Only Max’s room has a bed made up and curtains in the window–good stuff like that.
I also loved how Max helps his dad not exactly put away his sadness but live with it. Max urges his dad into meeting his neighbours and move out of his self-imposed exile. Urban’s Weekends with Max and His Dad is delightfully layered and offers something for the child reader as well as the adult reader whose heartstrings will be unintentionally pulled.