Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday: Abe In Arms

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme created by Jill at Breaking the Spine. This week I'm waiting on...

Abe in Arms by Pegi Deitz Shea

Release Date: June 1, 2010

Portraying the pressures of teens to live a normal life while facing mental illness, this suspenseful young adult novel follows the journey of success-bound Abe, who struggles with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. A senior in high school, with a loving and wealthy adoptive family, Abe is on track for a big scholarship and an open future. Suddenly, horrific flashbacks rip him back to war-torn Africa, where five years previously he lost his mother, sister, friends, and almost his own life to torturous violence. During therapy, he uncovers even darker moments from his past that make him question how he survived. This action-filled thriller will open the eyes and hearts of teenagers to the lives of young people who have been exposed to profound violence around the world.

-I'm on the lookout for more YA dealing with mental illness and this one is about a POC so it seems like a double win. There needs to be more YA written that deals with mental illness (thank you Francisco Stork for working to fill that void!). Also it sounds action packed so I'm anxious to read it.

Summary from

What POC releases are you waiting for?

PS What does the cover look like to you? I couldn't figure it out until I really looked, but I think it's really cool!


  1. Have you read Jessica Lee Anderson's BORDER CROSSING? Mexican-American boy struggling with the onset of Schizophrenia. I reviewed it back in February and was really impressed with how integral the main character's ethnic identity was tied into his illness (ie, afraid of being mistaken for an illegal immigrant and deported...which doesn't sound so paranoid anymore after Arizona's law).

    ABE IN ARMS sounds really interesting - I always love your Waiting on Wednesday posts since 99% of the time you're featuring books I haven't seen anywhere else.

  2. I had to really look at the cover, too, but once I figured it out, I love it. The boy's face is so poignant, and even more so since we're looking at him as if through a tunnel of barbed if he's trapped, and we can almost reach him, but not quite. But the dove gives it that breath of hope, so it's not all despair. Beautiful and moving and well-thought-out.

    I too would like to see more YA dealing with mental illness. (I had a character w/ bipolar disorder in my first book, but she wasn't the main character.) It's such a huge issue but still has such a horrible stigma.

    I'll definitely be checking this one out. Thanks, Ari!

  3. @Angela-I hadn't heard of Border Crossing (the cover looks vaguely familiar so I may have seen it briefly). I commented on your review, thanks for pointing it out to me! I SO agree with the paranoid thing and Arizona. I've lost all respect for the state (except for the people I know who live down there), between this and the delay in MLK day and now no ethnic studies in schools! *shakes head*

    @Christine-I know, I love it! I thought it was a tunnel with a dove at first and then I realized it was a face. You put it so well "as if he's trapped, and we can almost reach him, but not quite." The dove and barbed wire seem to say that this novel is going to be sad, but there is hope and peace on the horizon.

    Oh in Tallulah Falls? The only YA I've read dealing with mental illness besides Marcelo in the Real World is Bleeding Violet. Both are excellent.

  4. Hey all,
    I'm Pegi, the author of ABE IN ARMS. Glad you love the cover--I do too! My publisher is so cool. They actually asked me for ideas for the design. Believe it or not, but most children's book authors have little say on the illustrations and/or book covers. The designer whipped up a bunch of covers to choose from, and we all agreed on this one in a matter of days. Hope you like the story itself as much as the cover!

    Peace to you all,


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