Jake likes thinking, talking, football and encyclopedias. And fish. But he's not so sure about everything else - especially girls, or little sisters, or stepdads. And most of all, he's not sure if he really likes himself.
Then Jake meets a girl called Stella and old Mrs Kennedy next door, and he begins to find that he likes a lot more things than he thought. After all, as Mrs Kennedy says: Life isn't a bowl of cherries, but a bowl of cherries is still a bowl of cherries.
But it takes a tragedy to force Jake to look at himself and see that, really, he isn't so bad after all.