Say the Word

By Jeannine Garsee
(Bloomsbury Publishing PLC, Hardcover, 9781599903330, 360pp.)

Publication Date: March 17, 2009

List Price: $17.99*
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Dredging up the past can knock the present right off balance.

The world expects perfection from seventeen-year-old Shawna Gallagher, and for the most part, that’s what they get. She dates the right boys, gets good grades, and follows her father’s every rule. But when her estranged lesbian mother dies, it’s more than perfect Shawna can take. Suddenly, anger from being abandoned ten years ago is resurfacing along with Shawna’s embarrassment over her mother’s other family. As she confronts family secrets and questions from the past, Shawna realizes there’s a difference between doing the perfect thing and doing the right thing.

Shawna’s honest and relatable voice will draw readers in and hold them until the last page in this coming-of-age story. Jeannine Garsee has delivered a compulsively readable second novel, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Laurie Halse Anderson.

About the Author
Jeannine Garsee began writing even before she learned to read, drawing pictures in sequence until they told a story. Once she learned to write, she began to add captions, and then eventually gave it up when she received a typewriter for her thirteenth birthday.
An avid people-watcher, Garsee says she gets her ideas everywhere. About her writing, she says, "Everthing and everyone around me has the potential to become part of the story.
Her work as a nurse gave her much of the inspiration for the character of Martha. She says that she often deals with people in desperate situations, and wonders what chance their children have of ever leading happy, productive lives. She lives outside of Cleveland, Ohio, with her husband, two teenagers, and a fifteen year-old tabby cat named Max.
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