FICTION
Along the Indigo
336p. Abrams/Amulet. Mar. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781419725319.
COPY ISBN
Gr 9 Up—For Marsden, coming of age has meant finding a way to get her and her younger sister, Wynn, out of the town of Glory, by any means necessary. Wages stored up from her job in the kitchen of the brothel where her mother works as a prostitute are supplemented by skimming: taking money from the bodies, largely suicide victims, that appear in her family's darkly wooded land known as "the covert" to the rest of the town. Marsden knows that in time, she and Wynn will be expected to follow in her mother's footsteps; and after her father's body was found in the covert several years earlier, her sole focus has been on escape. It's only when Jude, a boy that she knows remotely from her high school, asks for help finding a box his brother Rigby may have hidden in the covert prior to his suicide that her plans are interrupted. It quickly becomes clear that she and Jude have more in common than both being biracial—Marsden is of Chinese descent and Jude is of African American descent—in a very white town, and an interest in the covert. Chapman's darkly poetic narrative can at times be slow paced but ultimately takes a lyrical turn toward both love story and murder mystery, and leads readers to a satisfying and surprising conclusion.
VERDICT A good selection for most thriller shelves.

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