Title: Fingerprints of You
Author: Kristen-Paige Madonia
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: August 7, 2012
Lemon grew up with Stella, a single mom who wasn’t exactly maternal. Stella always had a drink in her hand and a new boyfriend every few months, and when things got out of hand, she would whisk Lemon off to a new town for a fresh beginning. Now, just as they are moving yet again, Lemon discovers that she is pregnant from a reckless encounter—with a guy Stella had been flirting with.
On the verge of revisiting her mother’s mistakes, Lemon struggles to cope with the idea of herself as a young unmarried mother, as well as the fact that she’s never met her own father. Determined to have at least one big adventure before she has the baby, Lemon sets off on a cross-country road trip, intending not only to meet her father, but to figure out who she wants to be.
I wanted to read Fingerprints of You from the moment Ginger pointed this book out to me. When Kristen-Paige Madonia asked if I would like to feature an interview with her and read the book, I jumped at the chance.
The author jumps right into Lemon’s story from page one. You immediately see the world that Lemon has grown up in and see her mother, Stella, in all her glory. And right away, you’re faced with Lemon’s unexpected pregnancy and her thoughts on what she’s going to do moving forward.
The rest of the story explains Lemon’s journey as she travels cross-country with her best friend in search of things missing from her past – including her father. While the road trip was a great part of the story, I really enjoyed seeing Lemon grow after she arrives at her destination. That’s when you really see Lemon grow and deal with emotions and feelings that a typical teenager probably doesn’t have to face.
Some of the best characters show up after Lemon arrives in California. These characters (I won’t mention in case of accidental spoilers) are what really brought the story to life for me. I also found my feelings for Stella change as the story progressed and I saw her in a different light than I did at the very beginning. At first I thought she was just an absent, trashy mom who cared only about herself. As the story went on, I realized that while Stella certainly did have those qualities, she was also the best mom she knew how to be and did the best she could (most of the time) with what she had.
Kristen-Paige Madonia has hit a home run with Fingerprints of You and I can’t wait to see what else she has in store for us!