The Chance You Won’t Return

From Candlewick Press: When your mom thinks she’s Amelia Earhart, navigating high school, first love, and family secrets is like flying solo without a map.

Driver’s ed and a first crush should be what Alex Winchester is stressed out about in high school – and she is. But what’s really on her mind is her mother. Why is she dressing in Dad’s baggy khaki pants with a silk scarf around her neck? What is she planning when she pores over maps in the middle of the night? When did she stop being Mom and start being Amelia Earhart? Alex tries to keep her budding love life apart from the growing disaster at home as her mother sinks further into her delusions. But there are those nights, when everyone else is asleep, when it’s easier to confide in Amelia than it ever was to Mom. Now, as Amelia’s flight plans become more intense, Alex is increasingly worried that Amelia is planning her final flight – the flight from which she never returns. What could possibly be driving Mom’s delusions, and how far will they take her?

Praise for The Chance You Won’t Return:

“Cardi delves into issues of love, acceptance, loss and identity in her engaging debut novel…An honest, uncompromising story.”–Kirkus, starred review

“[A] candid and multilayered debut…Cardi weaves elegant metaphors and incisive dialogue throughout her chapters.”–Publishers Weekly, starred review

The Chance You Won’t Return is an emotional debut novel set within a stressful family situation…Cardi presents a powerful look at family life and how it changes everything when you need to watch over your parent.”–VOYA

“[A] double-edged story of a girl coming of age. Character development through the rendering of small detail is strong here…The result is a solidly crafted family story that sensitively explores the ripple effects of the temporary brokenness of one member.”–Bulletin (BCCB)

“The novel’s central theme is a clever, deft twist on the idea of leaving home. At a time of life when teenagers should be the ones departing, even just by learning to drive or going to dances, the author has Alex’s mother threatening to abandon the family without ever saying it…A novelist to watch.”–School Library Journal

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