Cover image for I don't live here anymore / Gabi Kreslehner ; translated by Shelley Tanaka.
Title:
I don't live here anymore / Gabi Kreslehner ; translated by Shelley Tanaka.
Title Variants:
I do not live here anymore.
ISBN:
9781554988037
Publication Information:
Toronto : Groundwood Books/House of Anansi Press, [2015]

©2015
Physical Description:
126 pages ; 20 cm.
General Note:
"First published in German as Charlottes Traum by Gabi Kreslehner"--Title page verso.
Abstract:
Charlotte's life is changed forever when her parents marriage breaks up, and Charlotte has to leave her beloved house and her old life behind. Then two very different boys cross her path, and a new emotion creeps into her sadness and anger -- an emotion that is both confusing and sweet. Charlotte falls in love with Carlo, tries to stay friends with tough-guy Sulzer and faces the jealousy of the cool-girl clique at school. As she watches her parents cope, sometimes haplessly, with changes in their own personal lives, and as she deals with a new baby brother, a potential stepfather and unexpected house moves, she realizes that love is a messy business. If grownups can make such a hash of it, how on earth can a 15-year-old cope? Set in a small town on the Austrian Danube, this is a familiar story that touches a chord with every teenager, told with refreshing emotional honesty. Devoid of judgment, sentimentality, and sexual precociousness, this story about first love shows a strong, curious girl stumbling and prevailing as she figures out how to turn away from the noise of other peoples expectations, and listen to her own heart.
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Summary

Summary

Charlotte's life is changed forever when her parents' marriage breaks up, and Charlotte has to leave her beloved house and her old life behind. Then two very different boys cross her path, and a new emotion creeps into her sadness and anger -- an emotion that is both confusing and sweet.

Charlotte falls in love with Carlo, tries to stay friends with tough-guy Sulzer and faces the jealousy of the cool-girl clique at school. As she watches her parents cope, sometimes haplessly, with changes in their own personal lives, and as she deals with a new baby brother, a potential stepfather and unexpected house moves, she realizes that love is a messy and risky business.

If grownups can make such a hash of it, how on earth can a fifteen-year-old cope?

But Charlotte does cope, magnificently, as she tries to figure out how to be a big sister, a daughter, a friend, a good person. And in the end she finds the courage to take responsibility for her own actions, and sets off to be with the boy she loves.

Set in a small town on the Austrian Danube, this is a familiar story that will touch a chord with every teenager, yet it is told with refreshing emotional honesty. Devoid of the judgment, sentimentality, sitcom snark or sexual precociousness that define so many North American young adult novels about first love, this story shows a strong, open, curious girl stumbling and prevailing as she figures out how to turn away from the noise of other people's expectations, and listen to her own heart.


Author Notes

Gabi Kreslehner was born in Linz, Austria. She is a teacher and writes for young readers and adults. I Don't Live Here Anymore, her first novel, was published to huge acclaim in Germany (Charlottes Traum), receiving the Peter Härtling Prize, the Hans im Glück Prize and the Steiermark Prize for Young Adult Literature. Gabi lives with her family in Ottensheim, Austria, a town on the Danube that is very much like Charlotte's.

Shelley Tanaka is an award-winning author, translator and editor. She has written more than twenty books for children and young adults, winning the Orbis Pictus Award, the Mr. Christie's Book Award, the Science in Society Book Award and the Information Book Award, and she has twice been nominated for the Deutsche Jugendliteraturpreis. Other honors include Texas Blue Bonnet runner-up, School Library Journal Best Books, ALA Notables and IRA Young Adults' Choice. Her translation of Michel Noel's Good for Nothing won the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People and was on the IBBY Honor List (Commended). Shelley teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts, in the MFA Program in Writing for Children and Young Adults. She lives in Kingston, Ontario.


Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

The resilient narrator at the center of Kreslehner's potent novel, originally published in Germany, offers a strong take on the familiar struggles that can accompany divorce. Fourteen-year-old Charlotte repeatedly visits her old, idyllic home in the country after she, her mother, and her siblings move into her grandmother's cramped rowhouse, in response to her father's affair with his secretary. Charlotte's parents' chaos overflows into her life as she is forced to care for her brothers and is held back a year at school. Kreslehner strongly sketches Charlotte's despair, anger, and powerlessness in the face of the divorce. However, even though the foundation of her old life shatters further as her father's new wife has a baby and her mother moves the family once again, Charlotte's own relationships become more central as she gains a new best friend, becomes the object of a love triangle, and eventually embarks on a romance with an Italian boy named Carlo. It's a memorable portrait of a maturing teenager coping and thriving in the face of domestic upheaval. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Horn Book Review

Over the course of a year, Charlotte's parents divorce, and the fifteen-year-old tries to make sense of her own complex emotions about the very human messiness of love. There is a lot to like in this slim Austria-set German import, including a strong main character, a great supporting cast, and the raw emotions of high school. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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