The story is about a young boy, Georgie Burgess who lives in the city of Tampa, the State of Florida with his alcoholic mother, and her ever-abusive boyfriend Steve (Hunt 1). The story has been set in Georgie’s neighborhood, a dilapidated and insecure part of the city. He everything, he does not know his father and never sure about himself. This is because she spends all her time drinking or passed out. Steve visits occasionally and when he does, he beats Georgie to unconsciousness. The mother depends on Steve’s money for bills and she cannot protect her child from Steve’s wrath. Due to this neglect, Georgie has none to teach him to read and write although he is a very intelligent child who loves and cares about roses. Georige believed that Miss Cressman, her teacher, dislikes him because of his inability to read. She does not try to figure out his problems but rather judges him as a stupid person.
One day, Georgie is very hungry, and her mother gives her money to purchase canned beans from a grocery store. He gets a lottery ticket for a certain contest staged at the Grocery store. He is excited that he may win a prize, just as he always dreamt that life might get better one day. He gets a candy bar from the cashier to cushion his fears if he does not win any prize. Georgie is enthralled and feels like he has conquered the world and his fears when he wins a dry rosebud. Upon returning home, Steve is waiting to beat him to his deathbed and destroy his prize. After losing his consciousness due to Steve’s beating, the police get a call, rescue and hand him over to Social Services while his abusive mother and boyfriend are put into custody (Hunt 87).
Georgie loves to spend time with Timothy, a schoolmate who understands him, Mr. Collier, and his grandson Robin who is affectionate but retarded. Robin and Georgie love feeding ducks and one day, Robin goes to feed the ducks alone. An accident happens when the ducks make him fall into the water, and sadly, he passes on. Georgie is affected by the loss of his friend and he moves the location of the rosebush from the garden to Robin’s fresh grave.
Finally, Georgie opens his heart to Molly and tells her all about his life. He forgives Molly and his pasts and learns to live, love and share in an affirmative manner. He finds the love and care of mother in Molly until he asks her if she is his real mother. He heals the wounds of physical and mental torture while Molly heals the pain of losing her only son and loving husband (Hunt 190).
Hunt, Irene. The Lottery Rose. New York City, Berkley Publishers. 1986.Print.