Undercover by Beth Kephart
After reading “Nothing But Ghosts,” I immediately got onto my library’s website and requested another one of Beth’s books, I just loved it that much. The one I grabbed first was “Undercover.”
Elisa is a young girl with a poetic soul. She is her father’s daughter and doesn’t really relate well with her mother and older sister, which makes life difficult when her father has to go away for an extended period of time for work. To make life even more complicated, Elisa starts to fall for the boy who she is providing with poetry to woo another girl.
Oh my goodness, is Kephart’s writing ever gorgeous in this book! Just beautiful, and not only when she is showcasing Elisa’s poetry. Something about the whole thing reminded me of Laurie Halse Andersen’s work – because of the gorgeous writing, not because it seemed derivative. I felt like Elisa held me at a distance, didn’t allow me to get close, but it worked for me in this case, where usually it would annoy me. She was so distanced from everyone since her father was away that it made sense that she would keep even the reader at an arm’s length.
If you’re a literary fiction fan who isn’t convinced about the whole young adult literature thing, please, please try Beth Kephart. Now I know why Amy was always raving about Beth, she writes consistently strong books.