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At the Edge of the World
Cover of At the Edge of the World
At the Edge of the World
Maddie and Ivan have been friends forever. They go to school together, surf, party, and hang out all the time. Ivan eats at Maddie's house almost every day. But all is not well in Ivan's world, and as...
Maddie and Ivan have been friends forever. They go to school together, surf, party, and hang out all the time. Ivan eats at Maddie's house almost every day. But all is not well in Ivan's world, and as...
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Description-

  • Maddie and Ivan have been friends forever. They go to school together, surf, party, and hang out all the time. Ivan eats at Maddie's house almost every day. But all is not well in Ivan's world, and as control of his life slips farther away from him, Maddie agonises over her role in his life. Ivan fears the fallout if the people in his community discover what he's been hiding, but Maddie thinks telling his secret will help him. As Maddie struggles to figure out her own post-high-school path, she worries about how to deal with the things she knows about Ivan's life. Is she a keeper of his secrets? Should she help him hide what's going on in his family? Or should she tell someone and get help? What does betrayal look like when your best friend is in trouble?

About the Author-

  • Kari Jones is the author of numerous novels for young readers and teens, including Storm Tide and Out of Season in the Orca Currents series, Shimmy in the Orca Limelights series and So Much for Democracy. She lives on the west coast of Canada, where she enjoys exploring the coast by kayak. For more information, please visit www.karijones.ca.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    Two friends grapple with parental pressures and neglect as they struggle to take control of their lives the summer following graduation. Maddie and Ivan have lived their whole lives in their coastal Canadian town of Bear Harbour. Though Maddie lives in a warm and loving home with her two dads, Ivan has been stuck with Des, his barely functioning, alcoholic father, since his mother left 10 years before. The two white friends spend their days surfing while Maddie contemplates her future--to attend university to satisfy the expectations of her supportive yet overbearing parents or to find her own way as an artist. Meanwhile, Ivan seems to be stuck in the precarious present; as Des starts to act ever more irresponsibly, Ivan feels obligated to clean up his messes while hiding Des' problems from the community. When Maddie begins to catch on that all is not well in Ivan's home, she is desperate to help him without betraying his trust, and she struggles to understand why Ivan cannot leave Des behind and move on with his life. As related in alternating first-person chapters, the friendship depicted between the two is tender and authentic. A strong, palpable sense of place anchors the story as Maddie and Ivan teeter on the precipice of independence. Readers will be moved by Maddie and Ivan's deep, enduring friendship. (Fiction. 12-18) COPYRIGHT(1) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    September 1, 2016

    Gr 10 Up-Ivan and Maddie have been best friends since childhood. Now they both are high school seniors confronting grown-up challenges. Ivan lives with his alcoholic father, Des, a sometime drug trafficker and part-time carpenter. Ivan often must shoulder the responsibility for himself and his dad during Des's frequent drunken bouts and occasional absences. But the young man hides all of this from his friends, even Maddie. She has her own concerns. Will she attend Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as her father Peter wishes? Or can Bo, her other father, convince Peter to allow her the freedom to find her own way? First-person chapters alternate between Ivan's and Maddie's perspectives. However, the characters never really come to life. The alternating viewpoints should have been a perfect opportunity for the author to delve into the characters' inner struggles, to explore Ivan's despair and Maddie's turmoil. But the action remains on the surface. The characters narrate the story in simple, declarative sentences that make them seem younger than they are. Set on Canada's west coast, the novel gives readers a taste of a close-knit town in which members pitch in during times of need but where much is hidden from public view or overlooked by those who will not see deeper. Surfing, fishing, and festivals add to the local color. This realistic fiction title uses mature language casually and frequently. It also includes multiple episodes of underage drinking-often in the presence of adults. VERDICT A marginal purchase; try Ash Parsons's Still Waters instead.-Gina Petrie, Catawba College Library, NC

    Copyright 2016 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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