Fiona's life changed forever when her mother died in a South Pacific sailing accident. One year later, everyone tells her it is time to move on. To Fiona, moving on means leaving her mother behind-something she has vowed never to do. But Fiona's father has started dating again. His new girlfriend, Kathy, is a professional psychic who claims she can predict the future and communicate with the dead. Fiona is sure she is a fraud, although she secretly longs for her abilities to be genuine. With the reluctant support of her best friend Abby, Fiona sets out to put an end to her father's new relationship by trying to prove, with decidedly mixed results, that Kathy is a liar.
When Josh's mother dies in a phobia-induced car crash, she leaves two questions for her grieving family: how did a snake get into her car and how do you mourn with no faith to guide you?
Twelve-year-old Josh is left alone to find the answers. His father is building a time machine. His four-year-old brother's closest friend is a plastic Power Ranger. His psychiatrist offers nothing more than a blank journal and platitudes.
Isolated by grief in a home where every day is pajama day, Josh makes death his research project. He tests the mourning practices of religions he doesn't believe in. He tries to mend his little brother's shattered heart. He observes, records and waits-for his life to feel normal, for his mother's death to make sense, for his father to come out of the basement.
His observations, recorded in a series of journal entries, are funny, smart, insightful-and heartbreaking. His conclusions about the nature of love, loss, grief and the space-time continuum are nothing less than life-changing.
As much as life has irrevocably changed since the death of his father, much has stayed the same for Cam. He's always had a great deal of responsibility around the house, but the burden is heavier now in combination with the load of grief he's been carrying. After the man who was driving the truck that killed his father turns up at the end of the driveway, Cam feels pressure to keep his family safe as well. He starts to see the man everywhere: at his work, in stores, at his sister's school. Cam needs to know what the man wants from his family, and he starts following his father's killer in search of answers.
An unprecedented series of hurricanes has swollen the Mississippi River to unheard-of levels and is threatening to put New Orleans and most of the low-lying areas of the South under water. Fifteen-year-old Stephen is spending the summer with his father near a small town north of Lake Pontchartrain when another powerful hurricane arrives and the levees on the Mississippi River completely fail. In the anarchy and chaos that results, Stephen's father is killed, and the boy is left to fend for himself. Stephen soon encounters Angela, a college student whose parents have also been killed. Navigating the labyrinth of flooded fields and towns in an airboat, the two set out in search of Stephen's mother and higher ground.
Mealworms are small creatures that live in dark secret places. Jeremy is a bit like that when he leaves his home in rural Nova Scotia and moves to Toronto with his mother. Lots of things keep him from enjoying his new life, but the worst is his science partner, Aaron, who is more annoying than sand in a bathing suit. Jeremy is also burdened by the secret he carries about the motorcycle accident that injured him and killed his father. Although Jeremy is haunted by his past, he starts to feel at home in Toronto when he realizes he has some skills he can share with his classmates. And when his mealworm project yields some surprising results, Jeremy is finally able to talk about his part in the fatal accident.
When her mother died two years earlier, Izzy thought the world would change in some identifiable way, but it didn't. It didn't even slow down. Along with constantly watching her brother, Jason, to ensure he didn't repeat his involvement with drugs, Izzy has managed to get through school and the rest of her life using her mother's endless "rules" as guidance, even making up some of her own as she goes along. When her father starts dating again and then decides to get married, Izzy is unprepared. She is convinced she will hate this intruder in her ordered life and is certain that their family is complete as it is. When her father's new girlfriend becomes pregnant, and her health is threatened, Izzy finds that there might just be room in her family for Anne. And while trying to save her brother and stay true to the "rules," Izzy realizes that family involves more than blood and that rules aren't always absolute. A touching, often funny, story of love and acceptance, Rules for Life is a reminder that while we can't choose the family we are born with, we can choose the people we take along for the ride.
Fourteen year old Pamela Collins is struggling to come to terms with her mother's death. Somewhat shy, Pamela is thoughtful, full of passion, often funny and sometimes tearful as she learns to cope with the emotional overload the tragedy has brought to her life. Her favourite things include walking alone in Lynn Canyon Park, the art of Emily Carr, and a certain boy with a "wicked grin." At the moment she dislikes her English teacher, shopping and being singled out for special treatment because of her motherís death. Pamela is tall and slim and mostly uncomfortable with her rapidly changing body. She is unsure of herself and unsure of the loyalty of her friends.
It really seems like Dani's dad has gone around the bend. Ever since Dani's mother died of cancer, all her dad does is stand around on street corners with his crazy signs, proclaiming that processed foods mean the end of the world. The Food Freak, as he is known, has already scared away all of Dani's friends at her old school. But it's a new year, and Dani is at a new school in a different part of town. Maybe things will be better now. Dani just needs to keep her head down and avoid making any friends. That way, nobody will find out about her dad and his insane protests. The plan seems to be working fine until one day Dani meets a boy who helps her see things in a different light.
When Ally's mom dies, Ally is left with no family, no friends and no future. Put into foster care at the age of fifteen, she has less than $200 to her name and nothing left to lose. When Ally meets Tate, a busking fire breather, she starts to see a new life for herself as a street performer. Ally decides to run away from her foster home, but her problems follow her. Hiding her age, sleeping on the streets and avoiding fights with other buskers, Ally discovers that there's more to life as a fire-breathing busker than not getting burned.
Fourteen-year-old Rose is sure she's going to become a folk-music sensation, with her best friend, Shilo, at her side. But first she needs to convince her mom to keep paying for her expensive violin lessons. Her mom wants her to join the youth symphony and focus on classical music, in preparation for a music degree at university. When Rose enters a fiddle competition with a unique prize for the winner, she hopes to show her mom she can really can make it as a folk musician.