Blood can both wound and heal ... Willa is lucky: She has a loving blended family that gets along. Not all families are so fortunate. But when a bloody crime takes place hundreds of miles away, it has an explosive effect on Willas peaceful life. The estranged father she hardly remembers has murdered his new wife and children, and is headed east toward Willa and her mother. Under police protection, Willa discovers that her mother has harbored secrets that are threatening to boil over. Has everything Willa believed about herself been a lie? But as Willa sets out to untangle the mysteries of her past, she also keeps her own secret - one that has the potential to tear apart all she holds dear.
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"Starred Review. This intense psychological drama, showing the brightest and darkest sides of humanity, offers remarkable acts of courage and disturbing images of domestic violence. Willa's frankly portrayed grief, confusion, and uncertainties will have a strong impact on readers. Ages 14+" - Publishers Weekly
"The novel ties up all the loose ends a bit too conveniently but not enough to ruin the story. A good read that should appeal to those who want realistic fiction. Grades 7-10." - School Library Journal
"Intriguing topics and situations can't quite breathe life into these somewhat flat characters. Ages 12+" - Kirkus
"An excellent choice for book discussion groups, especially those with reluctant readers. Grades 8-10." - Booklist
"The sheer drama of the plot will draw readers, and theyll stay for an insightful exploration of the way families go both right and wrong." - Bulletin
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Susan Beth Pfeffer was born in New York City. She grew up in the
city and its nearby suburbs and spent summers in the Catskill Mountains. When
she was six her father wrote and published a book on constitutional law, and
Pfeffer decided that she, too, wanted to be a writer. That year she wrote
her first story, about the love between an Oreo cookie and a pair of scissors.
However, it wasn't until 1970 that her first book, Just Morgan, was
published. She wrote it during her last semester at New York University;
since then, she has been a full-time writer for young people.
She has won numerous awards and citations for her work, which range from picture books to middle-grade and young-adult novels, and include both contemporary and historical fiction. She is ...
Susan Beth Pfeffer: Feffer (pfeffer means pepper in German)
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
- PW Starred Review
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