HERITAGE OF HATE
YA realistic contemporary
When fourteen year old Zoe finds a photograph that proves her birth father might still be alive, her search for the truth sets in motion a chain of events she is powerless to stop. When she learns he went to prison for committing hate crimes, her reluctance to believe the worst keeps her moving forward in her quest.
As the ugly details emerge, Zoe is torn between wanting to connect with the father she never knew and her fears for what this might mean for the safety of her biracial family. And when her birth father manages to track her down, Zoe must find a way to save the people she loves from the violent man whose vision of family includes a heritage of hate.
“Zoe! Pizza’s getting cold!” I ignore Mom’s voice as I sit on the floor in her closet, surrounded by shoes, flowery skirts, dress slacks, and scarves. Lots of scarves. Scarves in every fabric and color. Simple everyday scarves and beautiful gauzy ones. Mom’s scarves, which she’s been collecting since she was about my age. I don’t know why any fourteen year old would want to collect scarves, but Mom’s kind of weird sometimes. Some of the really old ones are so gross I thought she’d jump at the opportunity to donate them to school. To my drama class, specifically.
But no, all I have so far is a vague maybe. So here I sit. I figure if I can collect a pile of the really disgusting ones and just present them to her, she’ll say yes.
I jump to my feet and run to the top of the stairs. “Be right down!” I’ve only got a few more minutes before she’ll come looking for me. Back in the closet I dump scarves into one of the empty shoeboxes Mom stockpiles. Another thing she hates throwing away. When the box fills up, I grab another from the stack on the top shelf and pull off the lid. This one isn’t empty. A light green scarf lies curled on top and I lift it to my face. Its smooth gauze brushes against my cheek but smells stale, like Grandma’s cigarettes.