Fitzhenry and Whiteside
Little, Brown, 1996
(Danger Game, in USA)
Canadian Children's Book Centre Choice
Sixteen-year-old Chelsea, a victim
of abuse at an early age, has been let down by anyone she trusted.
So when she is forced to spend the summer with relatives she has
never met, she is determined to keep her thoughts, her feelings,
and, most of all, her secrets to herself. And whenever these unspeakable
emotions threaten to unfold, Chelsea relinquishes them to fire
an element over which she feels she has complete control.
It's not only Chelsea who has secrets.
Fifteen-year-old Diggon is on the run, having witnessed a brutal
attack carried out by a gang of his peers. Although Diggon did
not participate, he did nothing to stop the unprovoked attack
or to help the innocent victim. Now he is in hiding at his family's
cottage, ridden with guilt, fearful of his safety, and terrified
that by the time the police find him, he may be guilty of murder.
Chelsea's cousin Beth, uncertain
of her relationship with Diggon, can only stand by while her exotic
and mysterious cousin moves in and takes over.
Chelsea is able to conceal her secrets
and her need to burn until her cousins and Diggon decide to include
her in their secret summer pastime, a game of simple dares that
tread the line between fun and real danger. The danger game is
doing what you're most afraid of, whether it be standing in a
swarm of bees or passing your finger through the flame of a match.
To the three teens, doing these dares is nothing compared with
facing the real danger the truth and bringing it
into the open.
…a sensitive book about
abuse, and the emotional distancing and destructive coping
strategies it can produce.
(Voice of youth advocates)