Award: Awesome Indies: APPROVED
Author: Carol Davis Luce
Behind closed doors, a young mind is awakened to a world bigger than innocent brown eyes can imagine. Suzy Kovak learns early how to keep a secret. One secret she didn’t keep. “When I was six, I sat Danny down on the curb and told him his mother was his grandmother and his sister was his mother—and that made him a bastard. A bastard, I said, was a really bad thing to be. It sent him into his house wailing, and bought us a one-way ticket out of my Aunt Flora’s court complex.” Latchkey kids, Suzy and her brother, watch out for each other until he finds a new best friend. Forced to fend for herself, Suzy becomes a target for bullies. Growing up in Southern California in the 50s wasn't exactly root beer floats and sock hops. Their single mother struggles to keep the family together. Suzy feels lucky to get in good the cool kids who would cut their mark into the flesh of anyone clumsy enough to cross the gang. Tough teen-agers take care of themselves. Yet sometimes a girl still needs her mom even if her mom is less than perfect. Suzy holds tight to her secrets—until she meets the one person who unlocks her mind and sets the secrets free.