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Cheryl Karp WardNot all of the council members in the small town of Hudson Landing agree to host a group of city teens for a weekend. Some fear that the streetwise urban youth will bring drugs and crime into their fair hamlet, a Peyton Place of secrets, while some hope the weekend will promote a better understanding of diversity. But when seventeen-year-old Kristen Clarke, the beautiful, popular – and pregnant – white daughter of a successful supermarket manager, is found strangled and floating on Hudson Lake, all fingers point to visiting African American Kwame Richards. Although Kwame swears that he is innocent, it seems that being black often means being guilty until prove innocent. Only a photograph of the true killer frees him.
This latest mystery in free verse poetry by Glenn provides an honest glimpse into the feelings, frustrations, and fears of adults and teens as they attempt to deal with their lives. Alcoholism, teenage sexuality, and pregnancy are ever-present issues affecting both adults and teens in Hudson Landing. The town doctor secretly arranges adoptions as a solution. Numerous prejudices are also revealed and demonstrate the ridiculousness of stereotyping. City kids think country kids marry their sisters, chase pigs, and wear no shoes. Country kids think city kids beat up their sisters, run from the “pigs,” and wear combat boots. Glenn's subtlety shows that color has no barrier when one feels disappointment or abandonment or watches dreams drift away. As with other books by Glenn, this one will appeal to readers interested in this particular format, especially our reluctant young adult audience.