The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan


The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

Every year at an exclusive private boarding school in New York state, the graduating students uphold an old tradition - they must swear an oath of secrecy and leave behind a treasure for each incoming senior. When Duncan Meade inherits the room and secrets of Tim Macbeth, he uncovers evidence of a clandestine romance, and unravels the truth behind one of the biggest mysteries in the school's history. How far would you go to keep a secret?


An astonishing and beautiful read that is just dripping with atmosphere. -- Lindsay Foley Sugarscape LaBan's debut - reminiscent of Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why - compassionately illustrates the tragedy of withholding love and friendship, or worse, never having the courage to seek them out. Entertainment Weekly Tim's first-person voice is a compelling combination of compassion and analysis, revealing his lifelong challenge of albinism, the unexpected romantic triangle he enters into, and choices that set in motion unfortunate events... A playful element infuses the story as tragic themes described in English class play out in the characters

... Nonexistent parents, well-intentioned, likeable faculty on the periphery, elaborate dorm rooms with overstuffed closets, even the romantic, snow-covered campus all contribute to a setting that adds to the story's heft and intrigue. Starred Review, Booklist This novel is relatable and unusually gripping, even for an older reader - full of slings and arrows and outrageous fortune. Readers should find themselves fairly ripping through the pages to uncover the mystery of what happened, and why ... Romantic love, hard work, loyalty, friendship, suffering: Like the great tragedies that inspired the novel, it's all here. LaBan's take on adolescent life is rendered in the sweet, intelligent tradition of John Irving, but without any of the prep-school genre's self-satisfaction. And in the end, this story is about more than personal failure (and triumph), or the nature of tragedy. It's also a story about art and how it can redeem us. The Philadelphia Inquirer

About the Author

Elizabeth LaBan worked at NBC News, taught at a community college, and has written for several magazines and newspapers. The Tragedy Paper is her first young adult novel. She lives in Philadelphia with her family.

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Book Info


320 pages
Interest Age: From 12


Elizabeth LaBan
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Publication date

1st August 2013



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