Houghton Miflin Books
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My first novel is for young adults about the power of unconventional unconditional love. I wanted to write a book that had a heroine in love with the wrong person for the right reasons, who also has to find self love in order to understand true love. Opal’s love for her best friend, Marianne, has grown since they were pretending to be goddesses in the woods near their home in rural Pennsylvania.
Marianne, however, has grown up to be riddled with issues and clogged with self-absorption. O clings to memories and her protective, quirky family. Even though M has forsaken her for drugs and high school popularity, O still has plans to rescue her from ruin, only to find she’s too late.
But theirs is not the only love story in this novel. Intertwined are the sad tales of Hannah, the ghost of a runaway slave who haunts the nearby ravine, Opal’s parents and Marianne’s own mother, who lets pride rule her world. Ill-fated love does not prevail here, though. There are examples of true love that defy boundaries of society, giving Opal the hope and courage to one day love again.