“Wrecked” gets terrific Publishers Weekly review


Heather Henson. S&S/Dlouhy, $18.99 (272p) ISBN 978-1-4424-5105-6

As romantic as it is gritty, Henson (The Whole Sky) explores familial obligation and new beginnings in this explosive thriller recalling William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, set amid a Kentucky opioid crisis. Sixteen-year-old Miri and her father, Poe, live isolated in the backwoods of predominantly white Kentucky. Poe and Miri used to bond over motorcycles, but now Poe’s meth dealing causes a rift between them. Miri’s only companion is Poe’s glorified errand boy Clay, 19, whom he took in when Clay’s mother was incarcerated for cooking meth, but Clay and Miri’s tenuous friendship becomes strained when she rejects his romantic advances. Desperate to get away, Miri plans to head west the moment she turns 18, but that’s before she falls for newcomer Fen, 17, from Detroit. As their feelings intensify and Fen’s DEA father starts snooping around Poe’s meth outfit, Miri must decide if her need to protect her family outweighs her need for a fresh start. The alternating perspectives of Miri, Clay, and Fen create a multilayered experience, highlighting their respective lives in impoverished Kentucky and each character’s individual longing for escape and security. This love story packs a powerful punch, boasting suspense and edge-of-the-seat action. Ages 12–up. (Mar.)