Fault Lines

by Nora Shalaway Carpenter

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Riveting, powerful, and a little bit magical, Fault Lines offers readers a slow-burn romance alongside an unflinching examination of socio-economics, gender expectations, and environmental ethics.

Gold Winner of the 2024 Nautilus Book Award for Young Adult (YA) Fiction

Ever since her aunt died four months ago, seventeen-year-old Vivian (Viv) Spry is aching...
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Published By Running Press Kids

Format Hardback


Number Of Pages 384

Publication Date 09/12/2023

ISBN 9780762480999

Dimensions 5.75 inches x 8.5 inches

"I read Fault Lines in one sitting; it’s just that good. Riveting and real, including the magic. I only wish I’d written it myself."

"A powerful and timely story that deftly navigates the complex interplay between poverty and environmentalism. I fell in love with the land as much as I did the characters."

“A love letter to the natural world, this story shows how dismantling beliefs calls for fight and fury, but also empathy and heart. Tough yet intuitive Viv shines as a complicated protagonist, and her connection with earnest Dex brims with hope—until they discover the devastating ways they are at odds. Honest in its exploration of the deep-rooted challenges of one rural community, Fault Lines is a masterpiece as breathtaking as our West Virginian forests. Empowering and sublime.”

"Fault Lines is a lyrically rendered and stirring story of coming of age with the natural world and falling in love. Carpenter writes the people and region of Appalachia with unfailing grace and dignity. Her love for both makes every sentence gleam." 

"Nora Shalaway Carpenter writes about Appalachia with clear eyes and a compassionate heart. . . . This timely story is certain to grab readers who will–like me–eagerly flip the pages to learn how these engaging and determined characters will bridge the metaphorical sinkhole that divides them."

"With an authentic lens and compelling prose, Fault Lines takes readers deep into rural America, where Carpenter navigates divisive topics with grace. Readers will appreciate the precise pacing, relatable characters, and abundance of empathy that Fault Lines has to offer. I absolutely loved this heartfelt novel."

“Viv's moral compass cracks her heart wide open. This immersive story of love, land, and identity will shake the ground and make you experience the world in a whole new way. In a time of social and political polarity, Fault Lines urges us to look deeply at what we're willing to put on the line for one another. Absolutely riveting. A social- and environmentally minded book for our present and future.”

"With clean prose and clear purpose, Fault Lines explores the interlocking economic, social, and environmental issues confronting, not just teens, but all of us trying to navigate the modern world. Carpenter respects both the issues and her readers too much to offer pat answers. Instead, through the compelling match up of Viv and Dex we’re drawn into a complexity that can only be resolved with deep empathy and the magic of discovering the threads that bind us to both the Earth and to each other. Bold, brave, and surprisingly emotional, you’ll root for not only Viv and Dex, but for the trees and the forest itself."

"Confronting head-on the environmental ravages of fracking with a love story takes hutzpah of a kind I can only admire. I also believe it’s a story can make a difference to the complex issue of environment versus jobs to which this novel gives such nuanced attention. Make no mistake this is no ordinary love story but one told with rare and remarkable restraint and subtlety. I was happily reminded throughout of the masterful storytelling found in an earlier generation of Appalachian authors like George Ella Lyon and Cynthia Rylant. Add that the story is a page-turner with carefully drawn, compellingly believable characters makes me more than eager to see what this gifted young novelist will bring us next. Highly recommended."

"An engaging novel that will keep readers thinking."

— Kirkus Reviews

“Drawing from personal experience living in West Virginia, Carpenter cleverly braids the emotional, intellectual, and practical issues around pipelines and fracking… At the same time, the novel traces Dex and Viv’s tender romance as the pair find comfort in each other despite their very different personalities and circumstances. Hand to fans of activism fiction."

— Booklist

"Some stories are like foxfire—unexpected magic, rooted in place, that lights the way. Fault Lines is one of those stories."

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