Caggie should have everything she could want growing up as part of New York City society. She used to. She had a picture perfect family. She lived in a beautiful Manhattan apartment. She went to an elite private school. She had a handsome, smart, nerdy, perfect boyfriend. She had a quirky, beautiful best friend even if she did live all the way downtown.
She had everything until she lost the most important thing.
Nothing seems to matter quite so much now that her younger sister is dead. Drowned.
Caggie blames herself–maybe for the right reasons. Maybe for the wrong ones. She can’t be sure when nothing makes sense anymore. Even Caggie’s attempt to escape at a classmate’s party goes horribly awry. Now everything thinks Caggie is some kind of hero.
She doesn’t know a lot, but Caggie is certain she isn’t a hero.
When she meets Astor, Caggie thinks he might be the perfect solution. Someone to help her forget. Someone who never heard about the drowning. But Astor has his own secrets; his own grief that he’s been carrying.And his own secrets.
Caggie was already buried under her own grief, her own regrets. Now, as she becomes closer to Astor, Caggie will have to decide if the combined weight of their loss will be too much for either of them to hold in The Edge of Falling (2014) by Rebecca Serle.
Caggie is a realistic, honest character. She is quick to point out her own shortcomings and accept her due in terms of blame. Although narrated by Caggie, the story eventually comes full circle as Serle illustrates that a tragedy never affects just one person.
Set in New York City’s upper class, The Edge of Falling is set against the privileged, shining backdrop of New York’s Upper West Side. What could have made the story flippant or decadent is instead tastefully handled with Caggie–a character who has never felt comfortable with her own family’s wealth.
Sharp, though sometimes predictable, The Edge of Falling is a quiet, meditative story about loss and what comes after.
Possible Pairings: Where She Went by Gayle Forman, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson, We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, Hero Type by Barry Lyga, Drawing the Ocean by Carolyn MacCullough, Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta, Cures for Heartbreak by Margo Rabb, This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales, A Map of the Known World by Lisa Ann Sandell, Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin