Bullyville by Francine Prose
Bart stays home sick from school one day. He is at that weird age where he can stay home for a couple of hours, but the whole day is a different story...so his mom stays home with him. So she wasn't at work the day the planes flew into the towers. He saved her life. His dad, however, was not so lucky. He becomes famous, The Miracle Boy...the boy who lost his dad, but saved his mom. The local prep school, infamous for its bullies, offers him a full blown scholarship to help in their time of grief. Bart goes along, trying to start a new chapter in his life, trying to make his mom smile again. But it triggers the worst year of his life.
Loved this book...there was no life or death moment, looking on the story...but Francine Prose captures the despair of a boy who is bullied and tormented. I remember being this age...and these events would have seemed like the end of the world.