Set in North Carolina, The Ghosts We Keep by Mason Deaver is a book about coping with grief. It confirms that healing is a complicated process different for everyone. When Liam Cooper’s brother, Ethan is killed in a hit-and-run accident, Liam loses the normal in his universe.  The sixteen-year-old, non-binary musician can find no life outside the music he makes with the aid of GarageBand software. Even his friends Joel and Vanessa consider him too morose. Feeling like he doesn’t belong anywhere and trying to navigate the grieving process alone, his anger and depression consume him. Initially, Liam believes that he will move through theRead More →

Wrenched from her childhood home in Memphis and from a father she loves, sixteen-year-old Skye Rogers has been transplanted to New York City’s Upper West Side to reside with the ultra-wealthy—the American Royalty.  Calling The Monmouth School, which she attends with her twin brother Red, her personal hell, Skye lives with her mother, Deidre Allen, whom she despises, and a detached stepfather who tolerates her. While Red makes friends effortlessly, Skye (aka Blue) struggles to make tentative connections. However, she does befriend Jenny Johnson, with whom she bonds over a mutual wrist-slitting suicide attempt.   Both girls are also ambitious, with Jenny hoping to be aRead More →

When coping with emotional turmoil, our subconscious often takes us away as a kind of protection.  In the event that disassociation doesn’t occur, we find other ways to deal with or to control deep psychological pain.  Because physical pain can cancel out emotional pain, some people resort to self-harm to feel a sense of control over an otherwise uncontrollable situation.  This external way to express inner turmoil distracts the sufferer from painful emotions or helps the person who self-injures to actually feel again. Inundated with impressions of horror and hiding those impressions until they are unbearable, Charlotte Davis, the seventeen-year-old protagonist in Kathleen Glasgow’s debutRead More →