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A HEART DIVIDED by Cherie Bennett


by Cherie Bennett & Jeff Gottesfeld

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: March 9th, 2004
ISBN: 0-385-32749-8
Publisher: Delacorte

Kate Pride’s liberal-minded mother wants her to be a Woman of Purpose, and Kate longs to be like the cool, pierced girls in the magazines who “looked as if they did drugs and had sex even if they didn’t.” But she has an epiphany at a performance of The Crucible, falls in love with playwriting, and moves to Tennessee, where the lessons learned from The Crucible inform her way of surviving a new high school. The authors get the details of small-town Tennessee life right—meat-and-three restaurants, waitresses who call you “honey,” fruit tea, heat and humidity, and statues of Confederate soldiers. It’s the Confederate flag—the “racist flag,” as Kate calls it—that becomes the contentious issue at her new high school, and Kate is the Yankee outsider in the midst of controversy. The novel, which includes a script of the play Kate writes about the flag issue, would make a fine one-two punch with Arthur Miller’s play in a high-school classroom. (afterword) (Fiction. 12+)