TITLE: Below Rock Bottom
GENRE: YA Mature Young Adult
Regina’s future at Yale is threatened by a family history project when she has no family and by getting raped by a man who has ties to her past. If she can’t find the strength to face her rapist, she will lose her scholarship, Thomas and possibly her life.
Mrs. Crandall’s mustache twitched. I couldn’t concentrate on her lecture, thinking instead about the different kinds of home wax kits I could secretly leave in her desk drawer. It was only first period, and already my attention span needed a Snicker’s bar.
“Moving to the last business of the day,” Mrs. Crandall said while waddling to the front of the chalkboard. “Your term project is worth forty percent of your grade, so I would pay attention or you won’t be walking across the stage come graduation.”
She passed out pink instruction papers, her mustache flexing and stretching as she over-exaggerated her vowels. The more she talked, the more I felt like I was in one of those end of the world movies. The project was on family history and the paper was filled with questions about each side of our family and “important events that helped shape what your family is today.”
Ugh. What a bore-fest. I scanned the room while fiddling with the button on my Polo shirt. No one else seemed to be more than slightly annoyed or completely screwed over like I was. Was I really the only seventeen year-old with a dysfunctional family secret? Just how was I supposed to do research on a non-existent family? My father had disappeared right after the umbilical cord was cut. I didn’t know if he was the captain on a pirate ship off the coast of Africa, or a secret agent of some underground criminal gang.