Winner of the 1999 Keystone State Young Adult Book Award
In 1944, while much of the world is at war, fourteen-year-old Teddy wages her own war against herself, her twin brother, and her perfect, and perfectly despised, mother. When their mother dumps the twins at their grandmother’s house for the summer, Teddy faces her enemies with arrogance and a sharp anger. She won’t let anyone get too close and spends the days alone, exploring the beach and her grandmother’s fascinating attic. But as the summer unfolds, Teddy uncovers secrets about the past, a past that has left her with badly scarred hands and has left her mother and grandmother bitterly divided. The more Teddy learns, the more she wonders how long her family can let their old resentments keep them apart and what it will take to end her war with them and with herself.
"...a tour de force with a tough, unforgettable protagonist."
--- Kirkus, Book of Special Note
"Platt’s prose is as forceful as her main character, realistically conveying the torments of true mother-daughter conflict while sustaining a plot that develops and surprises to the ending."
"Kids who want a family story with some edge will appreciate the story of Teddy’s hard-won maturation."
---Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books
"Don’t expect this young adult novel, set during World War II, to be swathed in the golden mists of nostalgia. It traffics in the complicated issue of parental fallibility, which children often perceive as outright betrayal -- Randall Platt has done a convincing job of painting life at the naturally prickly age of 14."
--- Barbara Lloyd McMichael
Tacoma News Tribune
"Platt's characters are neither famous, rich, nor glamorous. Rather, they are the forgotten --- humanity's vast unknown majority that suffer injustice, illness, and loneliness without headlines or recognition. Yet it is exactly because of this that Platt's novels are so insightful to the human heart and condition."
--- C. Tad Devlin
Producer, Northwest Film Projects