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Contributor(s): Dellaira, Ava
ISBN: 0374305315     ISBN-13: 9780374305314
Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux
    OUR PRICE: $16.19  
Product Type: Hardcover
Published: March 2018
Annotation: Relates the stories of Marilyn who, at age seventeen, fell in love with James, left her stage-mother, and set out on her own and Angie, her now seventeen-year-old daughter, who returns to Hollywood seeking her father.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Mothers and daughters; Fiction.
Identity; Fiction.
Single-parent families; Fiction.
Dewey: [Fic]
LCCN: 2017019595
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 7-9, Age 12-14
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 8.75" H x 6.00" W x 1.25" (0.80 lbs) 403 pages
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q72802
Reading Level: 6.7   Interest Level: Grades 9-12   Point Value: 21.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s): Ava Dellaira is the author of Love Letters to the Dead, which was sold in 25 foreign territories and has been optioned for film. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, where she was a Truman Capote Fellow. She grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and received her undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago. She was an associate producer of Stephen Chbosky's feature film adaptation of his bestselling novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower. She currently lives in Los Angeles.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2018 January #3)

Dellaira's debut novel, Love Letters to the Dead, was good; her second, which tells two connected tales set 18 years apart, is spectacular. First comes the story of 17-year-old Marilyn, whose mother is so committed to her daughter's future stardom that she moves them into a tiny Los Angeles apartment with Marilyn's unwelcoming, alcoholic uncle. But Marilyn's vision of her future involves going to college, taking photos, and making a life with her smart and handsome new neighbor, James. Next comes the present-day story of Marilyn's biracial daughter, Angie, also 17, who wonders about the father she never met. Did he really die in a car crash? Does she have relatives who look like her? Will knowing her past help her find her way forward? Past and present collide when Angie runs away from Albuquerque to L.A. to find the man she thinks may be her uncle. Readers will be left sobbing, both for the characters they've come to love and for the state of the country—Dellaira draws on persistent racial divides to craft an ending that is surprising yet inevitable, heartbreaking, and hopeful. Ages 12–up. Agent: Richard Florest, Rob Weisbach Creative Management. (Mar.)

Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly.

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2018 February)

Gr 9 Up—A coming-of-age novel about all kinds of love, this is a realistic look into how teens' lives intertwine with their parents' pasts. The initial time line begins with Angie, a 17-year-old daughter of a single mother, leaving home to find answers about her past. Angie is searching for the truth about her father and his family, whom she never knew. The second narrative follows Marilyn, Angie's mother at 17. Marilyn is working through obstacles in her life that center around her unhinged family life and newfound love, James. Dellaira uses the two parallel threads to explore what it would be like for a young woman to know her mother's story and realize how it is also her own. Readers will be drawn into Marilyn's tale and keep wondering until the very end how Angie fits in. Some sexual situations are present but are not explicit. Readers who enjoyed Dellaira's Love Letters to the Dead or Emery Lord's When We Collided will fall in love with this title. VERDICT A must for collections where the author's previous work is popular and where realistic love stories circulate well.—Elizabeth Pelayo, St. Charles East High School, IL

Copyright 2018 School Library Journal.