After the Moment

Garret Freymann-Weyr, Author . Houghton Mifflin $16 (328p) ISBN 978-0-618-60572-9

After his stepsister's father dies, good guy Leigh moves from New York to Washington, D.C., to support her and finish his senior year. There, he falls in love with “train wreck” Maia, a recovering anorexic, self-injurer and germaphobe, whom he tries desperately to protect. When a group of boys do “something unspeakable” to Maia, Leigh commits an act of violence that threatens his future and their relationship. Readers will appreciate how real this story feels, in its telling details and careful conversations, as well as in the murky motivations behind Leigh's actions and his whole relationship with Maia, which haunts him years later. As she did in My Heartbeat and Stay with Me , the author creates a wonderful, complicated but loving family for her protagonist. Readers may have difficulty tracking all the characters, but they will understand that each family member is there to support Leigh, from his emotionally challenged father to his romance novelist mother who constantly warns Leigh “that he didn't take enough time for what might please him—for what he wanted.” This is an expertly crafted story about a complicated first love. Ages 14–up. (May)

Reviewed on: 05/04/2009
Release date: 05/01/2009
Paperback - 328 pages - 978-0-547-33168-3
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-547-39419-0
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