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Oates, Joyce Carol. After the wreck, I picked myself up, spread my wings,
and flew away. HarperCollins, 2005 [978-0-06-073525-8/0-06-073525-2]
Jenna and her mother in a terrible accident on the Tappan Zee Bridge.  Her
mother dies but Jenna survives with many injuries.  Just before the accident
her parents divorced so did does not want to go with her father in
California and ends up with her Aunt and Uncle.  Jenna likes the feeling of
being "in the blue" but when she is finally taken off the pain medicine she
doesn't know what to do.  She is a loner in her new school until she meets
Crow on his motorcycle who ends up leading her to Trina, a rich girl who is
into partying.  Jenna no drops into a long spiral of drug use and partying
with Trina.  Her Aunt and Uncle don't see (or ignore) the signs.  On
Christmas Eve she overdoses.  Now Jenna sees a psychiatrist.  Nothing or no
one helps her and finally she ends up at a party with Trina with boys in
their 20's.  Trina is beaten up and raped and Jenna just barely makes it
next store to call the police.  At the end of the story she meets up with
Crow again who helps her face what she he been dreaming and wondering about
the accident.  This 292 page book is a harsh book about someone spiraling
into self-destructive drug abuse and finally meeting someone who helps her
see her demons and help her face them.

Frederick Muller
Halsted Middle School Library
Newton, NJ
My book reviews are compiled at
My book review blog is at

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