The Mitochondrial Curiosities of Marcels 1-19Book - 2009
Her hands lay inert and upturned on her lap - probably stunned, she thinks, by the hideousness of the skirt underneath them. Centre seam puckered, zipper mangled, it's handmade in a way that makes people say, 'Did you sew that yourself?' when they mean, 'How can you wear that thing?' But she made it the day after he died, and she talked to him in her head the whole time. Which is why it looks like hell and why she had to wear it anyway.
Biology is not Dree's thing. Equally heinous are English, Social Studies, her sister and mother, not to mention Edmonton in general. Toronto is where she belongs - specifically the upcoming Renegade Craft Fair.
Mercifully, escape is imminent: on her fifteenth birthday, she will get the special fund her father promised, and the day after that, she'll be on WestJet Flight 233 to Toronto. Instead, her dad has a fatal heart attack, and all she finds are clues leadingto the ominous Alberta Psychiatric Hospital where her parents once worked.
Along the way: two fires, a family scandal, nineteen sassy sock creatures named Marcel, a new friend, a mystery, a stepmother who's maybe sympathetic after all, the unceasing misery of school and the search for a proper way to grieve a father.
Instructions for renegade crafts and associated illustrations included.
'Every now and then, a novel that is as solid assteel lands in readers' hands. A novel that needs the right proportion of its own hardening agents to deliver on the page. The Mitochondrial Curiosities of Marcels 1-19 is such a book ... Brown's prose is astonishing.'
'In this debut ... Jocelyn Brown transcends ... genre with a novel of depth and texture, rich with incident and very contemporary dialogue. She takes her readers deep into the complicatedpsyche of her narrator and heroine (yes, that's the right word), which is, as it turns out, exactly where her readers will want to be, richocheting from one OMG to another.'
- Globe and Mail
'This novel is about as strangely and intricately knotted as one of Dree's craft creations, and as hilariously fascinating.'
- Quill and Quire
'Brown's complex characters, unusual narrative style and fabulously quirky dialogue make this a fun book with layer after layer to uncover.'
- Geist Magazine
From Library Staff
EPLPicks_Guest_Topic May 27, 2016
Categorized as a Young Adult novel, this tragicomedy makes great reading for adults as well. The life and times of main character Dree will bring tears to your eyes, from both sadness and laughter. The scene where Dree waits for a late Edmonton transit bus on a cold winter day is classic Edmonton.
quagga Sep 28, 2009
Dree's 15th birthday is not at all as she had planned it. Her father had told her he was saving money in a special account for her and she intended to use the funds to fly to Toronto to attend the Renegade Craft Fair. Instead, her father had died suddenly and she was attending her father's memori... Read More »