Name this book and earn my eternal gratitude

Nothing makes me feel like a bad librarian more than my inability to solve this mystery.

In Grade 12 I took Music.  It was the kind of class where everyone played their own instrument and most of the time was spent practicing (we also had to bring in our favourite song of all time for the rest of the class listen to – I brought some Beastie Boys song because I was trying to be cool).  All my Music class time was spent practicing the french horn.  I was not good at playing the french horn.  Because I was so loud/bad, I was relegated to practicing in a storage closet.

This ended up being amazing because this was the storage closet where all the extra novel study book sets were kept!  So I just spent the whole time reading.  I probably read The Giver six times.  It was sweet.  And during this time I stumbled upon a book that I became absolutely obsessed with.  I liked it so much that I…well…erm…sort of took a copy home for myself.

What I remember from the plot – most of this is taken from a post I put up on the abebooks Book Sleuth forum a couple weeks ago; a post that has had no responses 😦

A sort of angsty, misfity teen boy falls in love with an artsy girl. I think they may have met at an art gallery.  I remember that she had black hair that was cut sorta bad ass and jaggedy. They proceed to have a pretty intense sexual relationship with lots of naughty bits in the book.  Then the artsy girl gets pregnant. I believe at that point they run away together. Then she has a miscarriage.  Intense.  The last chapter is set several years in the future (I believe) and the artsy girl is now dating an old professor. The angsty teen boy still pines for her.

What I remember of the cover:

I believe the cover was orange on the top half and white on the bottom half.  The orange was that kind of bright, intense “Penguin” orange that is part of the Penguin logo.

In the middle of the cover, there was a cut off photograph showing two people on a sort of old, brown, 1970s-ish couch.

What complicates things:

This could have been a young adult novel, but it could have easily been an adult novel.  We read lots of adult novels in my high school.  Sadly, I KNOW NOTHING about adult novels.

I have tried the YA route whilst searching for this but have come up with nothing.  I’ve tried subject heading searches in WorldCat, looking at reader-produced lists on teen pregnancy fiction on Amazon and Goodreads, and even lazy old Google searches.  I have even checked the Penguin sight in hopes that this actually is a Penguin book (because of the colouring) but no dice. I first encountered the book circa 2000, so it was definitely written before that.

Mom, if you are reading this (because I know you probably are because you look at my Twitter all the time), is there a book with an orange and white cover with a photo on it lying around the house in Regina anywhere?  If so, please mail it to me.

If anyone has any ideas, please, please, puh-lease share them with me.  If you are a member of the Sheldon-Williams Collegiate faculty, you can send me a bill for the book.  But I can’t tell you how much the book was worth because I can’t remember the title….

2 thoughts on “Name this book and earn my eternal gratitude”

  1. French Horn Pride! I used to play a tape of french horn music while I “practiced” and would just read a book instead. Wonder why I was so bad…


  2. Shannon,

    Have you thought of posting this inquiry on PUBYAC? The librarians who are part of this listserv are absolutely fabulous at sleuthing just this sort of thing.



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