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Year of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

MFA: Children's Literature

Directing Professor

Dr. Claudia Mills


When soon-to-be sixth grader Amelia Alban and her three-year-old brother Bryce are dropped off suddenly at Gram’s house for a surprise “visit,” she immediately knows something is up. Things have been strange lately at home, and, later, when Amelia learns the real reason behind Gram’s tight smiles, Dad’s silence, and Mom’s odd behavior, she becomes determined to hide her family’s secret— even if it means losing a part of herself in the process.

Amelia’s mother has accidentally overdosed- the result of an addiction to prescription pain medication and is now in rehab. With the knowledge of Mom’s addiction, everything feels different for Amelia. To make matters worse, she and her best friend Alivia have been assigned separate homerooms at school this year, and Alivia is making plans with new friends- plans that don’t include Amelia. Amelia doesn’t feel like she can talk to anyone about her school worries or her fears of what might happen when Mom returns home, but emotions can only stay bottled up for so long. It’s up to Amelia to figure out how to release them.

Contact Information

Purpose Statement

The purpose of preserving this thesis document is to provide a definitive record of student progress upon completion of the degree. This text will not reflect any revisions to the manuscript made after degree completion. For the most current version of the work, please contact its author.