On the Darker Side of Life
By Jillian Bietz – Teens – Stories of Secrets and Struggles
There is a trend in young adult fiction to tell the stories of lives that are less than perfect. Some will tug at your heart and others may change the way you think forever.
Dirty Little Secrets by C.J Omololu
On the outside, Lucy is a normal teenage girl. She has friends and even a crush on a boy at school. However, her home life is much different. Lucy’s mother is a hoarder. Their home is piled with trash, junk, gross leftovers and knick-knacks, unnecessary things. Lucy is horribly embarrassed and does all she can to protect her friends from the dirty truth. Yet when her mother suddenly dies in the house, Lucy is at a loss. Panicked at the thought of people finding out her secret, Lucy tells nobody and tries to resume life as normal while cleaning up the house. As she sorts through the mess, Lucy is reminded of stories as to how all the items all around her got there in the first place.
Choker by Elizabeth Woods
Shy Cara’s life is a struggle. Her parents practically ignore her, she is bullied by mean girls at school (who nastily nickname her “Choker” after an embarrassing incident) and she has no real friends. But when Zoe, the best friend she hasn’t seen since childhood appears needing a place to stay, Cara agrees to let the girl hide in her room. As the girls quickly reacquaint themselves, Cara’s life appears to be getting better. The boy she likes starts paying attention and with Zoe’s help, she becomes happier confident. But things turn sour when Zoe’s jealously strikes. Soon, people start to disappear. One of Cara’s classmates ends up dead and Cara starts to wonder is she really knows who her best friend is after all.
Fixing Delilah by Sarah Ockler
Delilah knows that her family has secrets, and she is beginning to unravel them. When her estranged grandmother dies, Delilah and her detached mother trek with Aunt Rachel to clean up the Vermont estate neither has visited since a suspicious family rift occurred eight years prior. While there, Delilah searches for the answers to questions her mother refuses to answer. Who is her birth father? What really happened that tore the family apart? Who was her mother’s youngest sister, whose diary she discovers, who died as a teenager? Before she can reconnect with the neighbor boy who she spent summers with as a child, Delilah must seek the real truth over life, loss and love no matter how much it hurts.
Jillian Bietz – Teens.
Jillian Bietz is a journalism student.
In her spare time, she enjoys reading,
creative writing, acting and cooking.
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