Heartshire High is my debut novel. Published on 11th August 2017 it went straight to #3 in Teen and YA Being a Teen Fiction ebook Releases on Amazon.com within its first week of release
Heartshire High, a YA novel standing at 50,000 words, is a modern retelling of Alice in Wonderland. Celia, at the start of her senior year of high school, moves to a small town where everyone has something to hide. Having been forced to live with her father and abandon her mentally ill mother, Celia is focused on just surviving her last school year, counting down the days until graduation. That is until Bunni befriends her and leads her into the woods, and into a world of drugs, parties, and death. Once Celia discovers the mysterious death of Tim, she can't help but dig into what happened, and starts questioning why the whole town is trying to ignore the inconsistencies surrounding an apparent overdose. As Celia becomes obsessed with solving a new friend’s murder, she is pulled deeper into the rabbit hole of secrets that underlies Heartshire High and the lives of the characters who go there. Celia must look to her new friends and sometimes enemies to support her quest for the truth.
Fans of Alice in Wonderland will recognize that the storylines are parallel but reimagined in characters such as Bunni, a platinum-blonde prom queen, and Pilar, a stoner with a penchant for poetry and a showgirl dream. While Alice-based motifs of mushrooms, hearts, and other familiar symbols and characters fill the story, it stands on its own as a young adult mystery.
The book may appeal to fans of John Green’s witty outsider characters and mystery-driven settings and, like YA bestseller Thirteen Reasons Why, it exposes the complex aspects of high school relationships and their consequences. Although it has dramatic characters and certainly fans of Alice in Wonderland will appreciate their references, it is not fantasy and is instead a plausible but still extraordinary journey through Celia’s senior year. Like the original Alice, it is filled with eccentric characters and surprise twists, but it takes place in a real-world, modern-day setting and shows how truly maddening it can be to navigate high school’s secrets and lies.
Unlike most YA novels, there is no love story, but instead focuses on Celia’s complicated and ever-changing relationships with her new friends and her distant father. Heartshire High, like Alice, culminates in bringing together all the characters for a dramatic trial but, unlike Alice, leaves Celia in her Wonderland, with all its promise and disappointment, and sets up the reader for a sequel.
Key information Title: Heartshire High Author: Charlotte Leonetti Publication Date:August 11th, 2017 Kindle e-book version: 156 Pages / ASIN: B074VCT394 Paperback version:186 pages / ISBN-10: 1974560775 / ISBN-13: 978-1974560776 Categories: Young Adult / Teen fiction / Teen Drama Buy online:Amazon.com Heartshire High / Barnes & Noble - Heartshire High
After years of writing book reviews, I'm finally getting my own -- it's tough!
A few of these reviewers have pointed out the use of song lyrics in the book, as well as the inconsistency of spelling of Celia's dad's girlfriend's name. These mistakes were in the advance copies that were sent to reviewers, but were (thankfully) quickly fixed for a second edition. I'm so thankful for these first readers for helping to educate me and catch things I didn't!