Author Paul Griffin was at the Center for Fiction on November 16th 2012, to discuss his YA novels The Orange Houses and Stay With Me

 

 

In The Orange Houses we meet Tamika Sykes, a tough girl who’s hearing challenged and way too smart for her West Bronx high school. She copes by reading lips and selling homework answers, and looks forward to the time each day when she can be alone in her room drawing. Then she meets Fatima, a teenage refugee who sells newspapers, and Jimmi, a homeless vet who is shunned by the rest of the community. The events that follow when these three outcasts converge will the lives of those living in the Orange Houses in explosive and unexpected ways.

 

 

Stay With Me explores the lives of fifteen-year-olds Céce and Mack. She’s a sensitive A student; he’s a dropout. But soon they’re spending every moment together, bonding over a rescued dog, sharing secrets, planning for the future. Everything is perfect. Until. Until. Mack makes a horrible mistake, and in just a few minutes, the future they’d planned becomes impossible. In this stark new reality, both must find meaning and hope in the memories of what they had, to survive when the person they love can’t stay.

 

 

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Twenty years to the day after Paul Griffin graduated Dartmouth, Penguin/Dial released his first novel Ten Mile River. He is also the author of The Orange Houses, an ALA Best Book for Young Adults Top Ten, Stay With Me, one of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2011, and Burning Blue.