Read what the students have to say...»

Grant Peaden, Pine Forest HS
I enjoyed listening to what inspired him to write and how the daily life of an author is. It amazed me how many words he has to write a day. The seminar really made me think if one day I could be a writer.

Morgan Vick, Pine Forest HS
I found the book interesting, partly because I could relate to a little of what he was going through. He played baseball in high school and I play softball and understand how demanding it can be and that it can take over your life.

Katie Jorsch, Pine Forest HS
I enjoyed his visit and I learned a lot about what it takes to be a writer and how to become one. We should do something like that again.

An impactful true to life story...
Katie Piercy, Enloe HS Student Review
The fact that Kevin Cropp's novel is 99.9 percent true, effects a reader much more, than just seeing it as a novel. The changed perspective from knowing that he included real life events in the novel allowed me as a high school student to understand the struggles he worked through to overcome, with his parents. Although I have a much closer relationship with my parents, I can easily understand the hardships he worked to overcome and how everyone experiences tension among a parent-child relationship while growing up. Cropp's novel portrays an ordinary teenage boy, that works to overcome this lifetime argument or more of a distance in his relationship with his mother. He writes an unforgettable story that keeps the reader asking many questions. Although, it is fairly predictable that the boy, Corey, will eventually make amends with his mother, Cropp writes to create many twists and turns for the reader, especially in Corey's baseball scenes and his struggle to learn discipline and respect, from his coach. The emotional struggle Corey faces between the many characters, his mother, father, and girlfriend, were what struck home the hardest for me in realizing Cropp's actual life struggle. I believe Cropp's novel was so successful because he drew from his own life experiences and didn't create a piece that was hard to understand because they spoke of what he knew, and what was close to him. His novel was very influential in convincing people how to be thankful for what they have an how to handle personal family relationships, such as the relationship Corey and his mother had by learning from the mistakes they had made before Corey finds out about her terminal disease. Cropp's novel left me wondering how Corey was planning to spend the rest of his life, and whether or not he chose to follow his dreams like his mother suggested, or followed the path his father had planned for him through baseball. I look forward to reading the sequel to his novel.

Samantha Duke, Enloe HS Student Review
Inspired by a true story, The Timekeeper by Kevin Cropp is a wonderful tale of a boy and his mother, who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. It is a tale of redemption and struggle as the pair attempts to overcome almost ten years of miscommunication and hatred.

Corey Wails, at seventeen, has a close relationship with Emily Vallent, his girlfriend of four years, and pitches for his school's baseball club, the Bulldogs. He seemingly has it all together and the future as a professional ball player that he always dreamed of is right within his grasp. However, it all turns sour when his mother, Linda Wails, is diagnosed with cancer for the second time, only this time it's terminal. Their relationship had been strained at best since her first surgery, but this new obstacle puts everything into perspective as they attempt to fix the broken bond while they still have the time.

The characters are realistic, and these flaws make them all the more endearing and meaningful to the overall understanding of the novel; the reader truly becomes involved in the life and mind of Corey Wails as they follow his journey of redemption and self-awareness. This story can connect with anyone on a deeper level, providing hope that maybe things aren't quite as broken as they seem to be. The Timekeeper is a brilliant reworking of the age old philosophy: every cloud has a silver lining, and it will inspire readers for generations to come.

Brief Review of The Time Keeper.
Sally Fry, Enloe HS Student Review
Written by newly discovered author Kevin E. Cropp, The Timekeeper is a must-read especially for mothers and their sons. Not only is this novel captivating on its own, but also readers of Cropp's story will find it eerily familiar. No child has a perfect relationship with their mother, and it is therefore very real to be absorbing yourself into the imperfect relationship between Corey and Linda Wails. Corey is a seventeen-year-old senior in high school living in the sand hills of North Carolina. He is a normal kid who spends his time consumed with baseball, his girlfriend, his dog, his car, and then there's the arguing with his mother. Linda Wails is diagnosed with terminal breast cancer and has been told that she has two months to live. Will Corey and his mother be able to reconcile their differences before it is too late and regret begins to sink in? With frequent baseball game anecdotes, powerful dialogue between Corey and his mother, and inspiring words of encouragement made by Corey's baseball coach, The Timekeeper is a reminder to all that neither life nor our relationships last forever, and so it is important to make both last as long as we can. We never know when it might be too late.

Captures NC...
Hannah Konitshek, Enloe HS Student Review
Perhaps it is because I was born and raised here, but there is something special about North Carolina that cannot always be captured in words. Even in some of the editorials published locally I find myself asking how long that person has lived here, or if they really understand how important baseball and sweet tea are. The Time Keeper, by Kevin E. Cropp, really captures that feeling that is not easily explained. He speaks often of the sandy soil that only a North Carolinian can identify and the way baseball can bring out an entire community. That is what really makes this book so compelling. Even to the outsider, the essence of North Carolina within a gripping story is what makes it unique.

But to forget the actual story would be a shame. Once again, the story is riveting because it is real. The story is about the relationship between a mother and son, a troubled relationship to say the least. While the storyline might seem simple at first, the complexity really lies in how brutally honest it is. Cropp makes an effort not to gloss over any of the rough edges around his characters, which makes it even more believable. The characters in the book are people that I know and see every single day; they are people that I can identify with. But the most outstanding aspect of the book is the raw emotion that Cropp is able to convey. Often, while reading, it is easy to see where the author was afraid to speak their mind. Authors seem to censor themselves, to smooth over relationships that are really beaten and battered. But the beauty within this book is the way it realistically describes that place that we have all been in. The uncomfortable silences and the arguments that you wish would just go away. But then, despite all the odds, Cropp is able to describe the way in which we come out of it. His characters are tragic, comical, and most of all, they are real.