Mercy is nearly sixteen, a loner, and a misfit, or at least that's how she likes to appear -- but her dyed hair and black clothes don't fool everyone. At home, Mercy has to cope with her depressed mother and eccentric aunt, who is a larger than life fortune-teller and alcoholic. Terrified by the impending return of her aunt's boyfriend, Mercy retreats further behind her image as she tries to maintain that all is well. However, Mercy's barriers are gradually eroded by unexpected friendships, and she learns to open up and accept help from others.
Publisher and industry reviews
'This is a moving tale of friendship, trust and the difficulties of depression and alcohol abuse, with an ultimately optimistic outcome.' -- Booktrusted (www.booktrusted.com) 'This excellent novel involves the reader, while its slight exoticism (set in Canada) adds to its charm. 5 stars.' -- Youth in Mind 'This absorbing story, whose strength is in its well-drawn characters, will have instant appeal to many teenage girls.' -- Linda Newbery, Armadillo, Autumn 2000 'An emotional tour-de-force, a wonderfully perceptive insight into teenage turmoil. Graced by a cast of believable characters, this powerful novel of friendship should be read for the overwhelming truth of its message, and the warmth of its smooth, which is at once musical and familiar, comforting and thought-provoking. A warm, moving and "human" story. Warmly recommended for any young adult's bookshelf.' -- The Glasgow Herald, 30 June 2000 'This is a convincing portrait of a life that is snowbound by circumstance, fear and misplaced independence. Mercy is such a mixture of steel and frailty that you will her to survive.' -- The Guardian, 31 May 2000 'A jolly good read ... a beautifully written novel and I would be surprised if it does not cause most teenage girls to stay locked in their room for a couple of days extra, at least.' -- Jackie Harris, Worcester Evening News 'Linda Holeman paints a vividly emotional picture of Mercy's life and the story is compelling. The theme of abuse is explored discreetly and sensitively.' -- Education Otherwise, March 2001
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