Published by HarperCollins on 2014-04-29
Genres: Bullying, Emotions & Feelings, Law & Crime, Social Issues, Young Adult
From debut author Amanda Maciel comes a provocative and unforgettable novel, inspired by real-life incidents, about a teenage girl who faces criminal charges for bullying after a classmate commits suicide.Emma Putnam is dead, and it's all Sara Wharton's fault. At least, that's what everyone seems to think. Sara, along with her best friend and three other classmates, has been criminally charged for the bullying and harassment that led to Emma's shocking suicide. Now Sara is the one who's ostracized, already guilty according to her peers, the community, and the media. In the summer before her senior year, in between meetings with lawyers and a court-recommended therapist, Sara is forced to reflect on the events that brought her to this moment—and ultimately consider her own role in an undeniable tragedy. And she'll have to find a way to move forward, even when it feels like her own life is over.With its powerful narrative, unconventional point of view, and strong anti-bullying theme, this coming-of-age story offers smart, insightful, and nuanced views on high school society, toxic friendships, and family relationships. Supports the Common Core State Standards.
Interview with Amanda Maciel:
Ali: What is one aspect of being published that has surprised you?
Amanda Maciel: I have a day job in publishing so I thought I knew everything and I’ve worked in publishing for 14 years. Before that I wrote for newspapers and stuff and did some nonfiction work for higher. I think what has really surprised me is how personal it is. You know it is personal but understanding the business side of things I didn’t prepare me for how personal it can be. Things still affect you personally. I have been very thankful that my publishing process has gone smoothly and efficiently. I love my book jacket and this process has helped me become a better editor. There is so much more to learn in the book process.
Ali: What was the deciding factor to write a story based off of real life events?
Amanda Maciel: I am always kind of careful about about saying it was inspired by or based on real life events because there is always a very fine line there. I always pick the wrong side of an argument. I have a background in journalism so I always want to pick out the person who is not being talked too, like I am getting a story. I think it is more that you see the stuff on the news and it is like “Are you sure that is the whole story because it it seems like you are just pointing bad guy over here.” Here are the good guys and these are the bad guys and it just frustrated me. There have been recent events about some teenagers that are being put on trial quite aggressively for doing teenagery behavior maybe and if it is that bad…there are a lot of a adults that do that…cyberbully. Goodreads anyone? Even the cable news, Adults don’t set a good example on how to talk to others in a good way.
Ali: Did you come up with the title “Tease”?
Amanda Maciel: I thought the publishing company was going to change it but a couple chapters in I wanted a teenager to call someone a tease. I hope teenagers still do that and it turned out they do. I thought it was okay but now that we have that title treatment, I am so happy about it and thrilled. I just wanted it to not sound too romancey. For once I came up with a usable title since I am supposed to do that for my day job.
Ali: If you wrote a sequel for “Tease.” Where do you think Sara would end up?
Amanda Maciel: That would be really hard. Because I think what happened in the book would follow her for the rest of her life and that is what really made me troubled about it. There isn’t a way to get rid of being that person, no matter how much responsibility…she obviously spends so much of the book not taking enough responsibility for her own actions. That is a huge burden to carry around from age 17 til you die. She is trying to find anyway of not accepting that fully because how does that not just crush you to a fine powder. That would be a hard story to tackle. I hope she is happy and off at college. Trying to live her life and be more self assured.
Amanda Maciel and I: