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"In a fast-paced novel-within-a-novel, Nina's great-great-grandmother runs from slavery to freedom, her courage an inspiration to Nina. This multi-layered novel--part contemporary, part historical--is impossible to put down."

Elizabeth Partridge, award winning author of Dogtag Summer 









As a biracial teen, Nina is accustomed to a life of varied hues--mocha-colored skin, ringed brown hair streaked with red, a darker brother, a black father, a white mother.


When her parents divorce, racial fractures play out all around her. Feeling stranded in the nowhere land between racial boundaries, Nina turns to the story of her ancestor's long-ago escape. This inspirational tale gives her guidance to build her own compass, and find her own inner North.


"The simple contrapuntal narrative...distinguishes the book emotionally and psychologically, raising it above other issue-oriented novels. Lester writes with social sensitivity and an ear for teen language and concerns. This is engaging treatment of a challenging subject that comes with little precedent." 

Publisher's Weekly (Starred Review)


"The tenderness and truth of the book moved my heart."

Alice Walker, Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Color Purple