Take the Stairs

Take the Stairs

by Karen Krossing
     
 

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Behind each tightly locked apartment door at rundown 64 Wilnut Street lie the hidden stories of the inhabitants. There is David, who tries to talk to his father's ghost, and Jennifer, who flirts with men she does not want. Asim, who faces hatred directed against his Muslim family, and Allie, who spends the night on suicide watch over her depressed mother. These

Overview

Behind each tightly locked apartment door at rundown 64 Wilnut Street lie the hidden stories of the inhabitants. There is David, who tries to talk to his father's ghost, and Jennifer, who flirts with men she does not want. Asim, who faces hatred directed against his Muslim family, and Allie, who spends the night on suicide watch over her depressed mother. These intimate stories reveal the troubles and hopes of thirteen teenagers as they struggle to turn obstacles into opportunities and make their way in the larger world.

Editorial Reviews

Canadian Review of Materials Magazine
Krossing creates credible characters whose narrative chronicles their lives in well-paced and colourful prose Ö [readers] will undoubtedly identify with the struggles and challenges of the thirteen denizens of The Building. Recommended.
KLIATT
In this set of interconnected stories, 13 teenagers tell of the circumstances and challenges they face. The teens are all connected by the building in which they live, referred to by all of them, not by address, but by the term "the Building." The first is Petra, who runs away from the Building and an abusive father, but who leaves her memory with the teens who remain, and who later returns to help her mother escape from the abuse that she too faces. Other teens who tell their stories include Louis, who earns self-respect and the respect of his peers by conquering a difficult bike path; Magda, who finally sees her self-centered, demanding boyfriend for what he is; David, who is trying to accept his father's death; and Allie, whose mother is emotionally ill and suicidal. In all of the stories, the teens cope in the best way they know how with the difficult circumstances that life has dealt them. Despite the challenges the teens face, there is a ray of hope that threads itself throughout the stories and keeps the reader intrigued. KLIATT Codes: JS—Recommended for junior and senior high school students. 2003, Second Story Press, 181p., Ages 12 to 18.
—Nancy Chrismer
VOYA
Krossing's first book for teens follows The Castle Key (Napoleon, 2000), which was written for younger readers. She tells the story of thirteen teenagers who live in "the Building"-a fifteen-story brick building at 64 Wilnut Street. Surrounded by more attractive housing, the building nevertheless offers affordable rent. Each chapter is a short story about one of the teenage residents. Petra runs away from an abusive father during a game of hide-and-seek. Magda deals with the emotions she experiences after an abortion. Flynn is a young man who steals beer from a neighbor's apartment only to discover that he might have been the last one to see him alive. Each teen must face a challenge, either emotional or physical, such as Allie's attempt to help canoe her injured father to safety. Each teen finds a unique way to escape, such as Louis who finds momentary freedom in his love of cycling. Although the short stories stand alone, they sometimes reference other characters or circumstances, including Petra's return to rescue her mother from her father. Short story collections such as this one can be a difficult sell, but many readers will identify with the various emotions and situations that are depicted. The book is an optional purchase for most libraries. VOYA CODES: 3Q 2P J S (Readable without serious defects; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2004, Second Story Press, 184p., Trade pb. Ages 12 to 18.
—Karen Jensen

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781896764764
Publisher:
Second Story Press
Publication date:
01/01/2003
Pages:
184
Product dimensions:
7.75(w) x 5.25(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
13 - 18 Years

Meet the Author

Karen Krossing writes novels and short stories for kids and teens. Karen also encourages new writers through workshops for kids, teens and adults. She lives with her family in Toronto, Ontario. For more information, visit www.karenkrossing.com.

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