Two teens uncover a secret hidden in the Cascade Mountains that spans generations, stringing together family skeletons, lost stories, and a discovery of love and self in this tense and emotional young adult thriller.
Cara is on the cusp of adventure. Unlike her best friends, she doesn’t want to go to college, she wants different kinds of challenges. And anyway, home just doesn’t fit anymore. She is growing distant from her friends and hasn’t spoken to her father in eons. To make matters worse, her ex-boyfriend and fellow climber, Nat, has popped back into town after breaking up with her over text. So it’s the perfect time to leave, and she has big plans for a gap year to rock-climb in Patagonia.
But when Cara hears that her father is actually missing, things change. While trying to track him down, she discovers a trail of clues centering around the history and life of the legendary mountaineer, outdoorsman, author, and all around dirtbag, Beckett Friedrichs. And unfortunately, the only person who knows enough about Friedrichs to make sense of any of this is Nat.
Their search for Cara’s father will lead into the Cascade Mountains, up a harrowing rock face, and navigating through time as Nat and Cara explore the history of World War II with the impact of Pearl Harbor and its Japanese Incarceration Camps, Cara’s family, and each other.
Jennifer Bradbury is the author of the middle grade novel River Runs Deep and of several critically acclaimed young adult novels, including A Moment Comes, Wrapped, and her debut, Shift—which Kirkus Reviews called “fresh, absorbing, compelling” in a starred review. Shift was picked as an ALA and a School Library Journal Best Book for Young Adults and is also on numerous state reading lists. A rock climber herself, she is also a teacher in Burlington, Washington, where she lives with her family.
Emphasizes the need all of us have for a partner who can answer our, “Take!”
– School Library Connection, March/April 2023
Cara’s tenacity and grit make her a heroine to root for, and her determination to find her father no matter the cost conveys a complex, heartfelt relationship.
– Publishers Weekly, 4/17/2023
Bradbury’s smart, fast-moving book immerses readers in the language, procedures, and emotions of rock climbing without overwhelming those unfamiliar with the sport. She lets her characters and their stories be complicated and multidimensional. Great holds, great movement, and a worthwhile finish.