Can we overcome our past?

Katie Parker is about to get a new life—whether  she wants one or not. With her mom in prison, and her father AWOL, Katie is sent to live with a squeaky-clean family who could have their own sitcom. She launches a full-scale plan to get sent back to the girls’ home when she finds herself in over her head…and heart. When Katie and her new “wrong crowd” get into significant trouble at school, she finds her punishment is restoring a historic theater with a crazy grandma who goes by the name of Mad Maxine. In the midst of her punishment, Katie uncovers family secrets that run deep, and realizes she’s not the only one with a pain-filled past. Katie must decide if she’ll continue her own family’s messed up legacy or embrace a new beginning in this place called In Between.

Review
It took less than a chapter for Katie Parker, the main character in Jenny B. Jones’s new novel, In Between, to win me over completely. Sixteen-year-old Katie, now a ward of the state of Texas after her mom’s recent imprisonment, says, “Knowing that your greatest achievement to date is becoming a dependent of an entire state can totally blow a girl’s confidence.” About the time Katie gets used to being at the Sunny Haven Home for Girls, she finds herself shipped out to foster parents who live in In Between, Texas. Now what kind of town would name itself In Between? And, have as its high school mascot a Chihuahua? Her new foster parents, James and Millie Scott, are nice enough people, in spite of the fact that Katie is shocked to find out James is the senior pastor of In Between Community Church. Now why would a family like that want her? Besides, she’s heard the horror stories from the other girls at Sunny Have. Moving from one foster home to another–never staying in one place for long. Katie figures the sooner she can get herself sent back to Sunny Haven, the easier it will be on everyone. However, when her best attempts to get the Scotts to send her back only seem to strengthen their caring and support, Katie begins to realize that maybe her life can be something better than it has been. And James and Millie Scott are surprised to find that Katie might also have a lesson or two to teach them. With great supporting characters such as Mad Maxine, Millie Scott’s “gum-smacking, energy-drink guzzling, wheelie-popping demon” of a mother, Jenny B. Jones has created a humorous and heart-touching book seen through the eyes of a foster kid on the outside looking in. Katie Parker will make you laugh out loud and, by the time you finish the last page, I have no doubt she will have won your heart as she did mine. — Sheryl Root

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From the Back Cover
Katie Parker knows life isn’t fair. After all, when your mom’s in jail and your dad’s a no-show, you figure things just aren’t going your way. But hey, she can deal. Then she finds out she’s being sent to live with a foster family–in In Between, Texas. What kind of town has a name like In Between? And what kind of family wants a kid like her? One thing’s for certain: None of this will be good. Sure enough–thanks to some new “friends” and her non-Mom’s crazed mother, Mad Maxine–life sails right past bad to stinking. Then again, she’s just a temporary kid, they’re just temporary parents, and she definitely doesn’t have any ideas about making any of this permanent. God, on the other hand, may have other plans altogether.

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