GENRE: YA Contemporary
Seventeen-year-old Cat craves a social life, but a neurological disease is wrecking her mom's health, and her uptight dad wants her to stay home and out of "trouble". When Cat falls for a guy who understands family weirdness, she must defy her overprotective father or lose the boy she loves.
Most seniors from Keene County High School didn’t stay home on Friday nights to babysit their moms, but I did.
I was chopping tomatoes in the kitchen, helping Billie finish dinner. Dad hired her to take care of Mom during the day, but she also liked to cook for us, a definite bonus. Billie’s cooking tasted almost as good as Mom’s used to. Almost.
Dad called at six. One hour before the football game in which Drew Stokes would execute the new play he’d drawn in ridiculous quarterback detail on my Spanish notes.
I had to see this game.
I didn’t want to answer Dad’s call.
When I did, he started talking before I could finish saying hello.
“Catherine, I’m in the ICU waiting for lab results on one of my patients. This could be a long night.”
I held the paring knife in midair. “You’re not coming home.”
“Not for a while.” His words wrapped around me. Tight.
“But I wanted to go to the game tonight.” I could still see Drew’s x’s and o’s scattered across my paper.
“I’m sorry. You need to stay home with your mother.”
I glanced at Mom, sitting in her wheelchair in the family room, head dropped to one side. She couldn’t help that she was sick, that she needed me. The doctors said she had “Cerebro-Spinal Degeneration,” a neurological disease that over the past few years had stolen Mom’s balance and ability to walk.
Lately, it was snatching pieces of my life too.