I received this book at no cost from the publisherInvisible Fault Lines by Kristen-Paige Madonia
Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers on May 3rd 2016
- Age Range: 12 – 17 years
- Grade Level: 7 and up
- Lexile Measure: 970 (What’s this?)
- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (May 3, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1481430718
- ISBN-13: 978-1481430715
“My father disappeared on a Tuesday that should’ve been like any Tuesday, but eventually became the Tuesday my father disappeared.”
Tired of living in limbo, Callie finally decides to investigate her father’s disappearance for herself. Maybe there was an accident at the construction site that he oversaw? Maybe he doesn’t remember who he is and is lost wandering somewhere? But after seeing a familiar face in a photo from the Great San Francisco Earthquake of 1906, she wonders if the answer is something else entirely.
Hailed by Judy Blume as a “remarkable young novelist,” Kristen-Paige Madonia, author of Fingerprints of You, explores how to rebuild a life after everything seems lost.
I finished reading this book on the anniversary of the San Francisco earthquake on April 18. It was sort of eerie, reading the story as the news discussed the historical significance and devastation. It was even stranger that the main character, Callen, had just survived the devastating news that her father had disappeared. Cal is in her senior year of high school and thinks she has her life mapped out. She is the drummer in a rock band with her two best friends. Her mother is distraught but holding it together for Cal’s sake.
As the days count off, Cal and her band are offered their first gig and while they are practicing each day. They do take time out to canvas the neighborhood, placing “Missing” posters and calling anyone and everyone they can think that might know what happened to her dad. You can just feel Cal’s heart being broken every day her father is gone. Cal just basically shuts out her mother and goes through the motions each day to survive. In her efforts to assign blame for her father’s disappearance, she see what she thinks is a picture of her father taken during the 1906 earthquake. As she obsesses about the photo, she spins into researching every detail about the quake and those details are explained in flashbacks.
Overall, this is a nicely executed story that brings those feelings to the surface about how to cope with the sudden loss of a loved one. It was pretty heartwarming that Callen had the love of her mother and her friends. There is also a bit of a romance for her as well when an old school mate comes back to town, You need to read that part for yourself! Parents: mild sexual situations and some language, otherwise safe for most young teens.
Kristen-Paige Madonia is the author of Invisible Fault Lines (Simon & Schuster BFYR, 2016) and Fingerprints of You (S&S BFYR, 2012); recent short fiction can be found in Five Chapters, New Orleans Review, American Fiction: Best Previously Unpublished Stories by Emerging Writers, and the Greensboro Review. She was awarded a 2011 Sewanee Writers’ Conference Tennessee Williams Scholarship and has received fellowships from the Hambidge Center, the Vermont Studio Center, the Juniper Summer Writing Institute, Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Hedgebrook, and the Millay Colony. She currently lives in Charlottesville, VA and teaches creative writing at the University of Virginia, James Madison University, and the low-residency MFA program at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. For more information, please visit http://www.kristenpaigemadonia.com Twitter Facebook Instagram
PLEASE WELCOME KRISTEN-PAIGE TO BOOKHOUNDS
What is on your nightstand?
Oh, I LOVE this question! Currently on my nightstand is All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, Burn Baby Burn, by Meg Medina, Crash Course: Essays from Where Writing and Life Collide by Robin Black, and my son’s current favorite, Dr. Seuss’s What Kind of Pet Should I Get?
What author would you totally fan?
Laurie Halse Anderson and A.S. King. They’re both so innovative and willing to take risks, so honest in their work and authentic in their story telling. When I think of role models in terms of being braver on the page and more experimental, both of them come to mind first. And David Levithan, too. We met when I was traveling to promote my debut FINGERPRINTS OF YOU – his novel EVERYDAY had just been released, so we ended up at a number of the same book festivals. In fact, I used a line from his book TWO BOYS KISSING as the epigraph for INVSIIBLE FAULT LINES after hearing him read in Portland and using the quote as a jumping off point for the story. He has no idea, but he played a large role in terms of the original inspiration for INVISIBLE FAULT LINES. I always assign one of his novels in the Young Adult Lit course I teach at James Madison University because I think he’s such an important contemporary YA author. By now we’ve met numerous times and have worked together during his NYC Teen Author Fest, and even though he’s unbelievably generous and completely approachable, I still tend to get a big tongue-tied around him.
Do you obsessively plot out each point or just go with the flow?
A little bit of both… I used to be a 100% go-with-the-flow-no-planning-ahead organic writer, but now I tend to feel more comfortable if I know, generally, what’s supposed to happen in the next chapter or two. I don’t plan each plot point, but I don’t jump in blind either. I’ll often know where I’m heading in terms of the big-picture narrative arc, what the ending might look like, for example, but I don’t usually know how I’m going to get there or what will happen along the way. I create a secondary document when I’m working on a novel that lists the chapters and one or two sentences about what I imagine might happen. It’s usually very vague — listing the characters, setting, and some kind of movement (internal or external) — and then I use that document when I get cold feet about sitting back down at the computer to write. I’m always open to veering off track and believe that often my best work happens when I write away from the original plan I had, but I do mentally sketch out what’s coming. It’s my “Almost-Outline.”
Is there a word you love to use?
Lately it’s “mindful” –- in all kinds of various forms. For example, I’m constantly telling my son, who is two and a half, to be mindful because I don’t like saying, “be careful” all the time. I don’t want him to be fearful of the world, so the new word with him is “mindful.” As in, “Be mindful of that red cherry popsicle you’re holding over our white rug.” Or, “Be mindful of that ledge on the play structure where there aren’t any bars to stop you from falling.” And then I’ve also been trying to use in my own line of thinking. It’s often the intention I set when I practice yoga – be mindful of all that I have, be grateful and present, and be mindful of what I hope to accomplish. Or in my professional life: Be mindful of what I’m saying with my work. It applies to my life in all kinds of ways these days! Be mindful of protecting my writing time; be mindful of having the option to say no if you don’t have the energy or the free time to take something on. Be mindful of my actions and reactions, of the kind of literary citizen I’m being, of the kind of mother and wife and writer I am.
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