Matisse can't help but feel bitter when her mother moves her and her father, who has a debilitating disease, away from their wonderful home in New York City, to Prague, New York, a tiny town in the middle of nowhere. Stuck in a high school whose name she can't even pronounce, without any friends, and nothing to do is miserable for Matisse. People either want to talk about her dad (which Matisse isn't ready to do), or pretend everything is fine (Matisse knows it isn't). But if Matisse wants to make in Prague, she'll have to learn to open up to new things and people, and accept her situation at hand.
Alive and Well in Prague, New York was a very heartfelt read. Grab's smooth, empathetic writing will easily reel in readers by the hordes as she artfully portrays the hurt of everyone knowing your business in a small town, and the joy of true friends. Matisse is smart, practical, and yet very hard headed. Your heart will go out to her as she tries to balance school, friends (or lack thereof), and the situation at home. Grab captures the essence of small town life perfectly; quirky, quintessential, and endearing, Prague will appeal mightily to readers who have ever been curious about small town life, or to those who know exactly what it's like, and can easily commiserate and identify with with Matisse.
Alive and Well in Prague, New York will be available June 3rd, 2008 from HarperTeen!