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How Far is Too Far?
A writer of young adult (YA) fiction who delves into the darker realms of relationships and the complexities of being human will be the speaker at this year’s summer intern-organized event at the Rose O’Neill Literary House. Author Christa Desir will speak on “Sex in YA: Authenticity, Agency, & How Far is Too Far,” on February 25. The event starts at 4:30 and is free and open to the public.
Desir is the author of three contemporary YA novels, all of which explore some of the difficult subjects young adults face as they learn how to navigate complicated relationships and their own lives. Alcoholism, addiction, cutting, mutually destructive relationships—all are among the topics that Desir touches on in her work. In her talk at the Literary House, Desir will discuss her seven core beliefs in creating sexual relationships in her novels that are an “authentic and honest treatment of the subject.”
Her most recent novel, Other Broken Things (Simon Pulse, 2016)—the story of a young recovering alcoholic—is called “a blinding beauty,” by author Martha Brockenbrough. Her second novel, Bleed Like Me (Simon Pulse, 2014) tells the story of a teenaged girl who is in a relationship that seems to be the only part of her life in which she is truly visible, until the romance turns dark and she finds herself in a twisted and dangerous relationship. Desir’s first novel, Fault Line (Simon Pulse, 2013) is the story of high school senior Ben, whose world is torn apart when his girlfriend Ani goes through a traumatic event that Ben can’t seem to get the truth about. Voya magazine says, “Fault Line is a story that will stay with the reader long after finishing the last chapter.”
Ryan Manning’17 a double major in English and chemistry with a creative writing minor, and Aliya Merhi ’16, an English major with a minor in creative writing, were the 2015 summer interns at the Lit House who organized this event. This unique internship opportunity happens every summer, when interns get to choose a topic and author, contact the author, and organize the event from start to finish. Desir was an easy choice for Merhi, who has been a beta reader for her manuscripts since she was 17. Merhi was excited that the Lit House gave her and Manning free reign to pick a topic, and she believes Desir will do a wonderful job talking about sexual issues in YA fiction, which Merhi calls “an intriguing subject that is a current debate…that Christa is close to.”
For more information on Christa Desir and her works visit her website at http://www.christadesir.com/. For more information on the Rose O’Neill Literary House and its events visit http://www.washcoll.edu/centers/lithouse/.