Red Sky at Morning by Richard Bradford
When his father joins the Navy to fight in World War II, high-schooler Joshua Arnold moves from Mobile, Alabama to the family’s summer home in Northern New Mexico to ride out the remainder of the war. Josh quickly finds a group of eccentric friends in the new town, a group that includes a minister’s foul-mouthed daughter and the wisecracking (and somewhat precocious) son of the local doctor. But Josh’s mother, an aging Southern Belle, is reluctant to let go of her aristocratic heritage, and has brought along a permanent houseguest (a frequently tipsy Southerner named Jimbob) to remind herself and her son of the better things in life. While often compared to The Catcher in the Rye, this book is softer, and Josh’s coming of age more complete. A unique portrait of the sometimes bawdy, sometimes tragic, often hysterical, events in an eccentric New Mexican town, and of the boy that falls in love with his new Western home.