MORNING IN A DIFFERENT PLACE by Mary Ann McGuigan

MORNING IN A DIFFERENT PLACE

Age Range: 12 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

An act of teenage rebellion in November 1963 sets off a chain of events that irrevocably changes 14-year-old Fiona O’Doherty’s life and the world she inhabits. Fiona and her siblings spend a year moving house and changing schools to escape their father’s alcohol-fueled fits of violence. But an ill-timed eviction notice and an uncomfortable stay with ungracious relatives leads the O’Dohertys to reconcile. Throughout the instability, Fiona finds an unlikely ally in African-American schoolmate Yolanda Baker. As the two become closer, the family’s integrity and Fiona’s hard-won acceptance by the popular clique hang in the balance. McGuigan is as adept at evoking the class consciousness and racial politics of ’60s New York as she is the horrors of adolescence, including insecurity and helplessness. With the twin evils of domestic violence and President Kennedy’s assassination looming in the background, the author’s portrait of the chameleonic nature of teenage girls builds aggressively to a powerful finale. The intricate depiction of Fiona’s impotence, however, through 150 pages of introspective analysis, might strike readers as heavy-handed and makes for an abrupt transition at the novel’s close. (Historical fiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-59078-551-5
Page count: 200pp
Publisher: Front Street/Boyds Mills
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 2009




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