Friday Never Leaving

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In this wrenching, mesmerizing coming-of-age novel that Kirkus Reviews calls “lyrical, suspenseful, and haunting,” Friday discovers what makes a family—and how to define home.

Friday Brown has never had a home. She and her mother live on the road, always on the move, running away from the past instead of putting down roots. Even when her mom dies, the only thing Friday knows how to do is keep moving.

Her journey takes her to an abandoned house where a bunch of street kids are squatting, and an intimidating girl named Arden holds court. Friday gets initiated into the group, but her relationship with Arden is precarious, and it puts Friday—and anyone who befriends her—at risk. With the threat of a dangerous confrontation growing, Friday has to decide between returning to her isolated, transient life, or trying to help the people she’s come to care about—if she can make it out alive.
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About the author

Vikki Wakefield is the author of three award-winning novels: In-between Days, Friday Never Leaving, and All I Ever Wanted. She lives in Adelaide, Australia. Visit her at VikkiWakefield.com.

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3.8
6 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Sep 10, 2013
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Pages
336
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ISBN
9781442486553
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Death & Dying
Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Homelessness & Poverty
Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Peer Pressure
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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An inspiring and achingly honest story of a girl with the courage to endure, hope, and even heal in the face of unimaginable tragedy, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen's Just Listen.

I have three months left to call Katie my older sister. Then the gap will close and I will pass her. I will get older. But Katie will always be fifteen, eleven months and twenty-one days old.

Hannah has survived high school by putting up walls. At first, they were meant to protect her from the relentless bullying that no one would defend her from, not even her popular older sister, Katie. Then Katie died, and, in a cruel twist of fate, Hannah's daily torment abruptly stopped. Now the walls try to shut it all out-the grief, the loneliness, and the harsh truth that Katie's death has somehow improved Hannah's life.

Then something happens that Hannah couldn't have predicted-friendship comes knocking in the form of new student Josh Chamberlain. Hannah has never been so desperate for connection. But if this isn't for real, if it's just another joke, Hannah's not sure she can take it.

Praise for Protected:
"Zorn shows the devastating effects of bullying while affectingly tracing Hannah's spiritual journey, coming to terms with truths she doesn't want to face and learning how to trust. " —Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
"Though the book tackles important issues, it reaches far beyond these flash points into a fully developed exploration of the aftermath of tragedy through strong characterization and genuine emotional appeal."-Kirkus, Starred Review

Everyone knows seventeen-year-old Grace Foley is a bit mad. She's a prankster and a risk-taker, and she's not afraid of anything—except losing. As part of the long-running feud between two local schools in Swanston, Grace accepts a challenge to walk the pipe. That night she experiences something she can't explain.

The funny girl isn't laughing anymore. She's haunted by voices and visions—but nobody believes a girl who cries wolf.

As she’s drawn deeper into a twenty-year-old mystery surrounding missing girl Hannah Holt, the thin veil between this world and the next begins to slip. She can no longer tell what's real or imagined—all she knows is the ghosts of Swanston, including that of her own mother, are restless. It seems one of them has granted her an extraordinary gift at a terrible price.

Everything about her is changing—her body, her thoughts, even her actions seem to belong to a stranger. Grace is losing herself, and her friends don’t understand. Is she moving closer to the truth? Or is she heading for madness?

I trace the word with my finger. It shimmers. A sharp impact near my ribs knocks me sideways and the pipe seems to buckle and twist. My legs lose grip. Close by, someone is sobbing as if their heart could break.

Vikki Wakefield’s first YA novel, All I Ever Wanted, won the 2012 Adelaide Festival Literary Award for YA Fiction, as did her second novel, Friday Brown, in 2014. Friday Brown was also an Honour Book at the Children’s Book Council of Australia, in 2013, and was shortlisted for the prestigious Prime Minister’s Awards. Vikki’s third novel, Inbetween Days, was Highly Commended in the 2016 Barbara Jefferis Award, was a 2016 CBCA Honour Book and was shortlisted for the 2016 Prime Minister's Awards. Vikki lives in the Adelaide foothills with her family.

‘Fans of intelligent, unflinching, spine-crawling thrillers...will love Ballad for a Mad Girl.’ Books + Publishing

‘Vikki Wakefield is a formidable author...Intriguing and captivating. Absolutely phenomenal.’ Diva Book Nerd

‘Wakefield tightropes confidently between fact and fantasy, the real and the surreal in this gripping tale of a daredevil teenager.’ Adelaide Advertiser, Favourite Books of the Year

‘Everything you already love about Vikki Wakefield—plus a spine-tingling supernatural mystery. Ballad for a Mad Girl is brilliantly creepy and thrilling.’ Fiona Wood

'Wakefield’s bone-chilling supernatural thriller...blurs the line between perception and reality, often folding in shrewd discussions of mental illness along the way. With whirlwind pacing, dynamic characterizations, and out-of-this-world spook appeal, Wakefield’s writing is a possessive force of its own. Readers, ready your nightlights.’ Booklist

‘The touch of magical realism—or is it psychic ability that Grace inherited from her mother?—is key to making the plot work...Give this to readers who enjoy a bit of supernatural ambiguity in their crime dramas.’ Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

‘There’s a dark side to being the funny one in the group. This is a piercing, creepy tale about a wild girl who could lose herself to a ghost. Vikki Wakefield’s writing never fails to give me chills.’ Emily Gale

‘Vikki Wakefield writes stories that will break your heart.’ Readings

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is brilliant, edgy and unsettling. Grace is a tough and sympathetic anti-heroine. I felt her grief and, even when I cursed her curiosity, was compelled to follow her to the story’s satisfying, cinematic end.’ Simmone Howell

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of Australia’s best YA writers. I couldn’t put down Ballad for a Mad Girl.’ Cath Crowley

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of the most creative and daring authors writing for young adults today. Ballad for a Mad Girl is an Aussie YA Gothic tale that smartly uses the supernatural to explore the depths of grief and growing up, and the pain to be found in both. This is a caring and keening novel, creepy but tender and wholly marvellous.’ Danielle Binks

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is an intense, unsettling read...Every page is charged with emotion.’ Loony Literate

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is about the living, the dead, the long journey of grief, and what happens when the lines between them blur. A spooky, gripping rollercoaster ride!’ Nadia L King

‘In Ballad for a Mad Girl, Vikki Wakefield does it again, this time raising the bar with a riveting, beautifully told ghost story that draws you in until the very last page.’ Kids’ Book Review

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of the most creative and daring authors writing for young adults today. Ballad for a Mad Girl is an Aussie YA Gothic tale that smartly uses the supernatural to explore the depths of grief and growing up, and the pain to be found in both. This is a caring and keening novel, creepy but tender and wholly marvellous.’ ALPHA Reader

‘Talented author Vikki Wakefield produced another gripping novel for YA readers...A clever mystery and insightful working out of newly adult relationships among characters as real and nuanced as ourselves.’ Adelaide Advertiser

‘A beautifully creepy book.’ Booktopia

‘With complex and genuine characters, a captivating narrative and the authenticity of a small-town setting, Ballad for a Mad Girl is the epitome of great Aussie YA.’ Written Word Worlds

‘Beautifully written, chilling and atmospheric, Ballad for a Mad Girl is a story with heart, horror, and hope.’ Bookish Manicurist

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is a real page turner...Beautifully written. The gothic, literary tone adds to the creepy atmosphere.’ Reading Time

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl has all the features to appeal to its intended audience, with its tight plot, its claustrophobic country town atmosphere and a group of longtime friends growing up and sometimes growing apart. Many are sure to enjoy the tension and edginess of Vikki Wakefield’s novel.’ Magpies

‘A tightly drawn story of compulsion...I could picture the landscapes so carefully created by Wakefield. The striking cover will impel young adults to choose to read it and they will be stunned by the extraordinary thriller within.’ ReadPlus

‘This is another great young adult novel by Vikki Wakefield that looks at the real world of a teenager, and what might be happening on the other side.’ Big Book Club

‘Evocative descriptions will make readers feel Grace’s fear, frustration, and confusion, with sights, sounds, and scents that are as palpable as word on a page can be. Mesmerising, haunting, and hopeful.’ Kirkus Reviews

Everyone knows seventeen-year-old Grace Foley is a bit mad. She's a prankster and a risk-taker, and she's not afraid of anything—except losing. As part of the long-running feud between two local schools in Swanston, Grace accepts a challenge to walk the pipe. That night she experiences something she can't explain.

The funny girl isn't laughing anymore. She's haunted by voices and visions—but nobody believes a girl who cries wolf.

As she’s drawn deeper into a twenty-year-old mystery surrounding missing girl Hannah Holt, the thin veil between this world and the next begins to slip. She can no longer tell what's real or imagined—all she knows is the ghosts of Swanston, including that of her own mother, are restless. It seems one of them has granted her an extraordinary gift at a terrible price.

Everything about her is changing—her body, her thoughts, even her actions seem to belong to a stranger. Grace is losing herself, and her friends don’t understand. Is she moving closer to the truth? Or is she heading for madness?

I trace the word with my finger. It shimmers. A sharp impact near my ribs knocks me sideways and the pipe seems to buckle and twist. My legs lose grip. Close by, someone is sobbing as if their heart could break.

Vikki Wakefield’s first YA novel, All I Ever Wanted, won the 2012 Adelaide Festival Literary Award for YA Fiction, as did her second novel, Friday Brown, in 2014. Friday Brown was also an Honour Book at the Children’s Book Council of Australia, in 2013, and was shortlisted for the prestigious Prime Minister’s Awards. Vikki’s third novel, Inbetween Days, was Highly Commended in the 2016 Barbara Jefferis Award, was a 2016 CBCA Honour Book and was shortlisted for the 2016 Prime Minister's Awards. Vikki lives in the Adelaide foothills with her family.

‘Fans of intelligent, unflinching, spine-crawling thrillers...will love Ballad for a Mad Girl.’ Books + Publishing

‘Vikki Wakefield is a formidable author...Intriguing and captivating. Absolutely phenomenal.’ Diva Book Nerd

‘Wakefield tightropes confidently between fact and fantasy, the real and the surreal in this gripping tale of a daredevil teenager.’ Adelaide Advertiser, Favourite Books of the Year

‘Everything you already love about Vikki Wakefield—plus a spine-tingling supernatural mystery. Ballad for a Mad Girl is brilliantly creepy and thrilling.’ Fiona Wood

'Wakefield’s bone-chilling supernatural thriller...blurs the line between perception and reality, often folding in shrewd discussions of mental illness along the way. With whirlwind pacing, dynamic characterizations, and out-of-this-world spook appeal, Wakefield’s writing is a possessive force of its own. Readers, ready your nightlights.’ Booklist

‘The touch of magical realism—or is it psychic ability that Grace inherited from her mother?—is key to making the plot work...Give this to readers who enjoy a bit of supernatural ambiguity in their crime dramas.’ Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

‘There’s a dark side to being the funny one in the group. This is a piercing, creepy tale about a wild girl who could lose herself to a ghost. Vikki Wakefield’s writing never fails to give me chills.’ Emily Gale

‘Vikki Wakefield writes stories that will break your heart.’ Readings

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is brilliant, edgy and unsettling. Grace is a tough and sympathetic anti-heroine. I felt her grief and, even when I cursed her curiosity, was compelled to follow her to the story’s satisfying, cinematic end.’ Simmone Howell

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of Australia’s best YA writers. I couldn’t put down Ballad for a Mad Girl.’ Cath Crowley

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of the most creative and daring authors writing for young adults today. Ballad for a Mad Girl is an Aussie YA Gothic tale that smartly uses the supernatural to explore the depths of grief and growing up, and the pain to be found in both. This is a caring and keening novel, creepy but tender and wholly marvellous.’ Danielle Binks

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is an intense, unsettling read...Every page is charged with emotion.’ Loony Literate

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is about the living, the dead, the long journey of grief, and what happens when the lines between them blur. A spooky, gripping rollercoaster ride!’ Nadia L King

‘In Ballad for a Mad Girl, Vikki Wakefield does it again, this time raising the bar with a riveting, beautifully told ghost story that draws you in until the very last page.’ Kids’ Book Review

‘Vikki Wakefield is one of the most creative and daring authors writing for young adults today. Ballad for a Mad Girl is an Aussie YA Gothic tale that smartly uses the supernatural to explore the depths of grief and growing up, and the pain to be found in both. This is a caring and keening novel, creepy but tender and wholly marvellous.’ ALPHA Reader

‘Talented author Vikki Wakefield produced another gripping novel for YA readers...A clever mystery and insightful working out of newly adult relationships among characters as real and nuanced as ourselves.’ Adelaide Advertiser

‘A beautifully creepy book.’ Booktopia

‘With complex and genuine characters, a captivating narrative and the authenticity of a small-town setting, Ballad for a Mad Girl is the epitome of great Aussie YA.’ Written Word Worlds

‘Beautifully written, chilling and atmospheric, Ballad for a Mad Girl is a story with heart, horror, and hope.’ Bookish Manicurist

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl is a real page turner...Beautifully written. The gothic, literary tone adds to the creepy atmosphere.’ Reading Time

‘Ballad for a Mad Girl has all the features to appeal to its intended audience, with its tight plot, its claustrophobic country town atmosphere and a group of longtime friends growing up and sometimes growing apart. Many are sure to enjoy the tension and edginess of Vikki Wakefield’s novel.’ Magpies

‘A tightly drawn story of compulsion...I could picture the landscapes so carefully created by Wakefield. The striking cover will impel young adults to choose to read it and they will be stunned by the extraordinary thriller within.’ ReadPlus

‘This is another great young adult novel by Vikki Wakefield that looks at the real world of a teenager, and what might be happening on the other side.’ Big Book Club

‘Evocative descriptions will make readers feel Grace’s fear, frustration, and confusion, with sights, sounds, and scents that are as palpable as word on a page can be. Mesmerising, haunting, and hopeful.’ Kirkus Reviews

Winner of the Adelaide Festival Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction, 2012.

Over the nine days before her seventeenth birthday, Mim's life turns upside down. In the end, the same things look entirely different.

Rule number one: I will not turn out like my mother.

Mim knows what she wants, and where she wants to go. Anywhere but home-in a dead suburb and with a mother who won't get off the couch. Her two older brothers are in prison, so now Mim has to retrieve a lost package for her mother. Does this make her a drug runner? She's set herself rules to live by, but she's starting to break them. And she can't seem to find answers to all the new questions:

Why is the monster dog Gargoyle hidden in the back shed?

Why is the boy she sent Valentines to for years now suddenly a creep?

And who is the mysterious girl next door who moans at night?

Vikki Wakefield's first young adult novel, All I Ever Wanted, won the 2012 Adelaide Festival Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction, as did her second novel, Friday Brown, in 2014. Friday Brown was also an Honour Book, Children's Book Council of Australia, 2013. Among other awards, it was shortlisted for the prestigious Prime Minister's Awards, 2013. Her new novel, Inbetween Days, will be published in October 2015. Vikki lives in the Adelaide foothills with her family.

'One of the most memorable YA books I've ever read. Original, real, startling and beautiful.' Cath Crowley, author of Graffiti Moon

'One of the best debut novels I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Vikki Wakefield has gifted the Australian Publishing world, and readers of Young Adult Fiction, a superior tale, full to brimming with formidable characters and an exquisite protagonist.' The Book Gryffin

'While it's both a thriller and a gritty romance, for me All I Ever Wanted is first and foremost a sparkling journey into hope. As the story drives toward its surprising conclusion, we're left as stunned as Mim as she discovers "that there are so many ways to tell a person you love them." I loved this book.' Paul Griffin

'[An] absorbing young adult novel...Despite the grim setting, the characters are richly and lovingly drawn with smart-mouthed, determined Mim a particular delight. At the core of the book is the idea that things (and people) are not what they seem. It's nothing new as a concept, but it's executed with winningly original style, wit and heart. Think Underbelly meets Hating Alison Ashley.' Big Issue

'Vikki Wakefield's first novel walks the tightrope between fate and human agency. Despair is leavened by shards of hope; this is not Young Adult literature that peddles misery or wallows in a nihilistic fug. Mim is one of those resilient protagonists who still wields a degree of control over her life....Like her protagonist, Wakefield plays with the reader's prejudices. Little by little, the restrictive labels forced on various characters are seen to be products of convenience or carelessness, rather than truth...All I Ever Wanted is a thoughtful and impressive debut, and Wakefield a talent to watch.' Australian Book Review

'A beautifully-written account of one young girl trying to claw her way out of the circumstances into which she was born...It's a story about daring to dream and the transformative power of hope.' Sunday Tasmanian

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