History: Published in 2001, this is the first novel for this author.
Plot: Catrine Evans is a 13 year old American girl who loses her mother and is subsequently sent to a boarding school in England. She struggles with the memory of a childish prank that might have killed a man. She tells her secret to various people at her boarding school, including the Chemistry teacher, Mr. Gilbert. Catrine has a big crush on Mr. Gilbert and he takes her under his wing, teaching her art and spending time with her on weekends since her dad doesn't visit much. The real problem arises when Mr. Gilbert makes it apparent that he is secretly in love with her too.
Review: I could not get into it. Very strangely written, kind of scattered, a stream-of-consciousness narrative that encompasses dreams of her dead mother, a crush on a teacher, regretful memories of the life she left behind, and a determination to grow up--against the odds--into a whole, healed adult. I had to keep reading the reviews to figure out what this book is about, and I still don’t think I ever got it. The are scenes that are related but aren’t interesting enough to keep interest.
Opening Line: “Did it grieve me to bring the girl. Of course it did.”
Closing Line: “He says Your father but you aren’t listening.”
Quotes: “Yes, bored.”
Rating: Pretty bad.