Book Nook: Visitation Street, by Ivy Pochoda
Two fifteen year-old girls are feeling bored. It is a summer night in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, which is right on the waterfront. These two girls, June and Val, are close friends but their friendship appears to be fraying. One of them is more precocious than the other. That night they decide to set out on an adventure, just the two of them. Things get out of hand and something tragic occurs.
These moments form the opening scenes of Ivy Pochoda's novel "Visitation Street." Her story unspools primarily in Red Hook. In this interview the author describes how she got the inspiration for this story. The denizens of Pochoda's fictional Red Hook feel very real. Some of these characters are dealing with immense guilt. Others are merely trying to dull the pain of existence. There's one character who is hoping that the arrival of cruise ships will be a boon to the neighborhood. He's sprucing up his business while keeping an eye on things.
This is a very human story and it is wonderfully wrought. I believe Ivy Pochoda might some great books in her future.