I always thought you'd know, somehow, if something terrible was going to happen. I thought you'd sense it, like when the air goes damp and heavy before a storm and you know you'd better hide yourself away somewhere safe until it all blows over.
But it turns out it's not like that at all. There's no scary music playing in the background like in films. No warning signs. Not even a lonely magpie. One for sorrow, Mum used to say. Quick, look for another.
The world can tip at any moment … a fact that fifteen-year-old Pearl is all too aware of when her mum dies after giving birth to her baby sister. Told across the year following her mother's death, Pearl's story is full of bittersweet humour and heartbreaking honesty about how you deal with grief that cuts you to the bone, as she tries not only to come to terms with losing her mum, but also the fact that her sister - The Rat - is a constant reminder of why her mum is no longer around…
Clare Furniss grew up in London and moved to Birmingham in her teens. After brief stints as a waitress, shop assistant and working at the Shakespeare Centre Library, she studied at Cambridge University and worked for several years in political media relations. She now lives in Bath and has completed an MA in Writing for Young People at Bath Spa University. Clare's novels have been shortlisted for numerous awards including the Branford Boase, CILIP Carnegie and The Bookseller YA Bookprize. You can follow her on Twitter @clarefurniss and find out more information on her website www.clarefurniss.com.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's UK (April 24, 2014)