Monday, March 31, 2014

What is Janie Chodosh reading?

Featured at Writers Read: Janie Chodosh, author of Death Spiral: A Faith Flores Mystery.

The entry begins:
Since I write for a young adult audience, I read a lot of YA fiction. I just finished Laurie Halse Anderson’s The Impossible Knife of Memory. She is one of my favorite young adult writers, and this book did not disappoint me. What I loved most about this book was the snappy dialogue between Hayley, the protagonist, and her eventual love interest, Finn. Their banter, which ranges from snarky/sarcastic to hilarious to poignant, hums with real-life teenage vitality. Teens do so love to take linguistic jabs at each other, and the dialogue perfectly captures that artful use of language. There is a deeper side to this story, too, the relationship between a veteran father suffering from PTSD and his teenage daughter. Haley’s first person narration is interwoven with her father’s flashbacks of his devastating war experience, allowing the reader a glimpse into the root of his suffering. The book is nuanced with themes of memory and trust and how to...[read on]
About Death Spiral, from the publisher:
Life is tough when you have a junkie for a mom. But when sixteen-year-old Faith Flores— scientist wannabe, loner, new girl in town—finds her mom dead on the bathroom floor, she refuses to believe her mom really OD'd. But the cops have closed the case and her Aunt T, with whom she now lives in the Philly ‘burbs, wants Faith to let go and move on.

But a note from Melinda, her mom's junkie friend, leads Faith to a seedy downtown methadone clinic. Were her mom and Melinda trying to get clean?

When Melinda dies of an overdose, Faith tracks down the scientists behind the trial running at the methadone clinic. Soon she's cutting school and lying to everyone—her aunt, her best friend, even the cops. Everyone, that is, except the strangely alluring Jesse, who believes the “real” education's on the street and whose in-your-face honesty threatens to invade Faith's self-imposed “no-dating” rule. A drug-dealer named Rat-Catcher warns Faith to back off, but it doesn't stop Faith from confronting a genetics professor with a guilty conscience. When the medical examiner's body winds up in the Schuylkill River, Faith realizes if she doesn't act fast, she may be the next body in the morgue. Can Faith stop this deal gone bad from taking a sharp turn for the worse?

Death Spiral is a smart, surprising novel featuring an in-your-face heroine sure to appeal to teens and adults alike.
Visit Janie Chodosh's website.

Writers Read: Janie Chodosh.

--Marshal Zeringue