The Beauty That Remains

New York teens Autumn, Shay and Logan have each been devastated by the loss of a loved one in recent months. Autumn's best friend, Tavia, died in a car accident when leaving a party Autumn skipped to hang out with Tavia's brother Dante. Logan is wracked with guilt over the last words he said to his boyfriend Bram when they broke up a few months before Bram died of a drug overdose. And Shay is foundering after her identical twin sister, Sasha, succumbed to leukemia (or, as they referred to it, "f*cking Luke... as if the cancer were a crappy boyfriend she couldn't shake instead of leukemia"). Turning to music, social media and friends--as well as, for some, alcohol, school truancy and denial--they all struggle to find The Beauty That Remains in their changed world.

Ashley Woodfolk's ambitious debut novel knits together the intersecting lives of three ethnically diverse, grieving teens. Although the backdrop is the pop-punk and indie rock scene of urban and suburban New York, social media serves as a parallel setting. Autumn continues to e-mail and DM Tavia. Logan obsessively watches Bram's old vlogs (his YouTube channel was called "Bram Is Bored"). And Shay is paralyzed at the thought of continuing to work on the fan site she and her sister hosted: Bad*ss Music Fanatics. Anyone who has ever lost someone they love will ache at the grinding pain and guilt the three experience, and perfectly understand the sometimes terrible choices they make as they get, as Shay says, "closer to okay." --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

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