Monday, July 13, 2009

A Good Book To Give Kids Making Their First Train Trips

Jump the Cracks by Stacy DeKeyser has what I think is an intriguing premise--a fifteen-year-old girl on the train from Hartford to New York sees a toddler she believes to be in danger. So she takes him. What starts out as a responsible act turns into a sort of kidnapping. Victoria and her young charge end up on the lam, heading down the east coast while Victoria tries to negotiate the little one's safe return over the phone in calls to her own father who had been expecting to meet her at the station in New York and the police officer assigned to her case.

DeKeyser shows a lot of control of her material and her plot. As I was reading, I'd think, Why doesn't Victoria do X? Sure enough, she did. Why doesn't Y happen? And it did. Victoria almost spends too much time dwelling on her dad's failings, but her angst over her parents' divorce and her father's absence from her life is motivation for some of her action.

A better adjusted teenager from an intact family might have left that poor little boy on the train.

For a long time Jump the Cracks walks a fine line between thriller and unique problem novel. Some readers might feel let down with the ending. Others will find themselves a step closer to experiencing adult mainstream fiction.

Jump the Cracks is published by Flux, which has a blog called Eye On Flux. That's got to be a play on Aeon Flux, don't ya think?

Training Report: I'm plugging away on agent research. I love research because it's like working but different. Here's something I didn't need to know about, though.

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