HEROIC WORLD

YOUNG ADULT CONTEMPORARY

87,000 WORDS

 

Seventeen-year-old Deanna Mason is eager to age out of the foster care system and live on her own, far from the prying eyes of strangers. She could never imagine that her own impulsive act will change everything. 

With her addict mother’s lingering hold and years of broken trust behind her, she’s too smart to let anyone near her heart again. Then one Friday night she stumbles upon an escalating domestic dispute outside a run-down minimart. A wide-eyed little boy caught in the middle cowers against a car. The scene’s piercingly familiar: Deanna was once as helpless. Unable to turn a blind eye, she tackles a gun-wielding man to save him.

Hailed as a hero by the media, Deanna struggles to keep the surreal attention from breaking her carefully constructed walls. But suddenly she’s falling for her foster brother, Nathan. And when her mother returns after months of silence, sober and full of bright promises, Deanna decides to give her yet another chance. Somehow happiness seems within reach. As her story goes viral and she's asked to interview with a national talk show, however, traumatic pieces of her past inevitably resurface. Deanna faces a life-changing choice: find the courage she showed in one selfless act and open her heart to the world, despite the risk of people hurting her—or remain a bystander to her own life.