Friday, March 6, 2015

"The Distance Between Lost and Found"

Kathryn Holmes grew up in Maryville, Tennessee, where she was an avid reader and an aspiring writer from an early age. She now lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and piles upon piles of books. A graduate of The New School’s MFA in Creative Writing program, Holmes works as a freelance dance journalist, among other writing gigs.

She applied the Page 69 Test to The Distance Between Lost and Found, her debut novel, and reported the following:
From page 69:
They’ve been climbing for an hour. Maybe longer. Through sheets of rain. And it has occurred to Hallelujah, which means it has probably also occurred to Rachel and Jonah, that they should have found the trail by now. Did they cross right over it, a thin, washed-out dirt stripe in the sea of green? Did they fall farther than they thought?

Or did they climb the wrong hill entirely?

It’s a chilling thought. A slice of icy rain, down to the bone.

Because that means that while before, they were just off-course, now, they are lost.


Hallelujah has felt lost for the past six months. Since Luke. But now she almost wants to laugh, because clearly, she had no idea what lost was.

“We’re lost,” she says aloud. Trying out the words.

Jonah turns to look at her. He cocks his head, like he didn’t hear what she said.

“We’re lost,” Hallelujah says again. Louder. She enunciates. “Lost.”

And Jonah visibly deflates. Exhales. “I think so, yeah.”
This excerpt is actually a great representation of the book as a whole! The Distance Between Lost and Found is about two parallel journeys. In the physical sense, it’s about a trio of teens getting lost in the mountains and trying to find their way home. In the emotional sense, protagonist Hallelujah “Hallie” Calhoun is struggling to find herself again after an incident six months ago left her a social outcast, bullied and withdrawn. It’s only through the physical challenges she faces in the wilderness that she is able to rediscover her strength and her voice.

Page 69 captures the exact moment that Hallie, Jonah, and Rachel realize they’re in over their heads. Prior to this point, they’ve separated from their youth group hiking trip without chaperones or maps, gotten caught in a violent rainstorm, and fallen down a mountainside. From here on out, things only get worse. I definitely hope this snippet would be enough to entice someone to read further!
Visit Kathryn Holmes's website.

--Marshal Zeringue