Total Constant Order

Total Constant Order

By Crissa-Jean Chappell

Katherine Tegen Books, Hardcover, 9780060886059, 288pp.

Publication Date: November 1, 2007


Fin can't stop counting. She's always heard a voice inside her head, ordering her to listen, but ever since she's moved to the Sunshine State and her parents split up, numbers thump like a metronome, rhythmically keeping things in control. When a new doctor introduces terms such as "clinical depression" and "OCD" and offers a prescription for medication, the chemical effects make Fin feel even more messed up. Until she meets Thayer, a doodling, rule-bending skater who buzzes to his own beat and who might just understand Fin's hunger to belong, and her struggle for total constant order.

Crissa-Jean Chappell's candid and vividly told debut novel shares the story of a young teen's experience with obsessive compulsive disorder and her remarkable resolve to find her own inner strength.

About the Author

Crissa-Jean Chappell's reviews, short stories, and poems have appeared in many magazines. A professor of creative writing, she lives in Miami, Florida, where she often looks for manatees. This is her first novel.

Praise For Total Constant Order

“Likable characters and an intense pace.”
-School Library Journal

“Plenty of kids, OCD or not, will…find the exploration of disorder and identity thought-provoking.”
-Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Readers, especially those stuck with their own annoying rituals, will recognize the anger, the anxiety, and the longing for escape.”
-ALA Booklist

“This must-have story is fresh. Chappell’s first novel is a breakthrough.”
-Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) (Starred Review)