Dear Carl Deuker,
From the moment I opened your book, Runner, and read the first seven lines, I instantly knew Chance and I would not be getting along. Just like Chance, I had an alcoholic father, but my thoughts were just the opposite. Chance couldn't understand how someone could hate their parent for being an alcoholic. I, on the other hand, didn't understand how you could not hate them.
Even though I strongly disagreed with Chance, I continued reading. Chance's dad seemed oddly familiar to someone I once knew. Suddenly it hit me. We were both living in the same world. Sure, I don't live on a boat or was ever involved in smuggling. Sure, my mother never left me and I never have to worry about going to bed hungry. But after you get past those details, we were left with one thing in common: our fathers.
After that moment, I felt a connection with Chance. Not just any old I-felt-a-connection-with-this-one-character feeling. But more like Chance was actually a real person. Someone I could relate to and he would understand what it was like to have such a parent that tried, but could never succed.
As I said, I always thought that it was impossible to not hate someone who is an alcoholic, but Chance taught me something different. As I continued to read the book, I realized that no matter how much my dad may have dissappointed me, it was impossible for me to hate him. If Chance was sitting right in front of me, I'd be tongue-tied and flustered as in what to say. But instead I would like to thank-you, Mr. Deuker, for writing Runner. Runner made an impression on me that keeps my mind wandering though class.
Melissa also made an impression on me. She never once gave up on Chance, and that's just the way my friends are. My friends and I will be friends forever, just like I know Chance and Melissa will. Without Melissa, Chance may have never found the courage to tell anyone. Things may have turned out worse, but because he had Melissa, things turned out the best possible. Every person should have a friend like that.
Runner opened up my eyes to many things I'd forgotten about. It reminded me that someone out there will always love you, just like Chance always loved his father. You are never alone; Melissa was always there for Chance. Hating someone will come back and bite you; Chance hated Brent Miller, until he found out Brent had died for his country.
It's been a year since my father passed. He didn't die a hero like Chance's father, a hero. But in my eyes, he was one, because after all, he was my father. I would like to tell you how I feel, but saying thank-you would be an understatment. Anybody in Chance and I's situation should read Runner. It is truly an amazing book.