Being Fishkill by Ruth Lehrer
Published November 14, 2017 by Candlewick Press
Born in the backseat of a moving car, Carmel Fishkill was unceremoniously pushed into a world that refuses to offer her security, stability, love. At age thirteen, she begins to fight back. Carmel Fishkill becomes Fishkill Carmel, who deflects her tormenters with a strong left hook and conceals her secrets from teachers and social workers. But Fishkill’s fierce defenses falter when she meets eccentric optimist Duck-Duck Farina, and soon they, along with Duck-Duck’s mother, Molly, form a tentative family, even as Fishkill struggles to understand her place in it. This fragile new beginning is threatened by the reappearance of Fishkill’s unstable mother — and by unfathomable tragedy. Poet Ruth Lehrer’s young adult debut is a stunning, revelatory look at what defines and sustains “family.” And, just as it does for Fishkill, meeting Duck-Duck Farina and her mother will leave readers forever changed.
I hadn’t heard much about this book when I recieved an ARC fromt he publisher. Our main character, 13 year old Carmel Fishkill, was born in the back of a moving car and named after the highway overpass sign her mother saw as she was being born. I really liked Fishkill as a character, she is strong and fierce. The story is hard and gritty throughout most of the book, dealing with things like rural poverty. The other main character Duck-Duck is also sure to catch your attention, along with her relationship with Fishkill. I really enjoyed the author’s writing and the story will hold your attention from the very first page.
Thank you to the publisher, Candlewick Press, for sending me an ARC of this book.