I am so excited to welcome Rebecca Serle, author of the upcoming novel, The Edge of Falling, as well as When You Were Mine, to the blog today! This awesome new novel is an incredible, in-depth exploration of how we cope with tragedy, true teenage life and the power to overcome. It's beautiful, and it's poignant, and Rebecca took the time out of her crazy busy schedule to answer a question of mine, so please welcome her to the blog today, and be sure to check out my review for The Edge of Falling tomorrow!
Question: In a novel that's very much about redemption and self-discovery, what do you think a background of the social elite has to offer the characters within the novel?
This is a great question, and a dichotomy I definitely wanted to explore in The Edge of Falling. Caggie is born into a privileged life: New York City, the Upper East Side, a famous family celebrated in the JD Salinger novel The Catcher in the Rye…on paper, it looks like the perfect life. Who wouldn’t want the fancy prep schools, black tie galas, backstage passes at Fashion Week, and the ability to travel all over the world? But when tragedy strikes, as it does for Caggie when her sister dies in a horrible accident, privilege, social status and material things become a sea you have to swim through to discover and embrace what really matters.
For some characters in the novel, like Caggie’s mother, social status becomes a crutch; a coping mechanism for her to process her grief. She depends on it, and the comfort it provides her. Her brother Peter, on the other hand, stays far away from home- and therefore, his family and his privilege- because he can’t deal with losing his little sister surrounded by the superficial lifestyle that his family embodies. Caggie is somewhere in the middle: she had an appreciation for the luxurious life she’s been able to lead…but she also feels a tremendous amount of guilt that she is still able to live, while her sister is not.
So what does privilege have to offer the characters in The Edge of Falling? Absolutely nothing.
Caggie and her family must learn to rely on themselves and each other, instead of on the things they can buy and the places they can go. Redemption cannot be bought, and self-discovery isn’t on the label of any haute couture gown- that’s what makes them priceless.
I hope you all will read The Edge of Falling, and remember to find me on Twitter and let me know your thoughts!
Read the Synopsis for The Edge of Falling:
Growing up in privileged, Manhattan social circles, Caggie’s life should be perfect, and it almost was until the day that her younger sister drowned when Caggie was supposed to be watching her. Stricken by grief, Caggie pulls away from her friends and family, only to have everyone misinterpret a crucial moment when she supposedly saves a fellow classmate from suicide. Now she’s famous for something she didn’t do and everyone lauds her as a hero. But inside she still blames herself for the death of her sister and continues to pull away from everything in her life, best friend and perfect boyfriend included.Then Caggie meets Astor, the new boy at school, about whom rumours are swirling and known facts are few. In Astor she finds someone who just might understand her pain, because he has an inner pain of his own. But the more Caggie pulls away from her former life to be with Astor, the more she realises that his pain might be darker, and deeper, than anything she’s ever felt. His pain might be enough to end his life…and Caggie’s as well.