Raaaven. I can still hear Cole calling out to the protagonist, Raven, with his flirty mock, even thought I finished reading the book, "Empty Cup" late last night. He's a best friend of Raven's since childhood, and in the end he wins my heart.
Suzanne Costigan's novel, "Empty Cup" is a story about a young girl in grade twelve who goes through a number of difficult struggles. For fiction, topics like rape, abuse, and drugs aren't always easy to write about in an appropriate way for a teen market, but Costigan does it well. I read chapter one on Amazon, and had to immediately order the book. I couldn't wait to see what happened next. The novel arrived yesterday, late afternoon, and I couldn't put it down. Each chapter pulled me along, not because I was tricked with dramatic plot, but rather because I was constantly rooting for Raven.
I'm impressed by Canadian Authors who can use our northern locations for settings in their fiction, and still keep the writing mainstream. Costigan does a great job with this, making "Empty Cup" a novel easily read by a wide market. Though the subject matter is challenging, the novel isn't dragged down with it. Instead, its focus aims at Raven herself, and how her choices, though not always good ones, don't have to affect her future.
I look forward to reading more from Suzanne Costigan in the future.