Nettie is going to be sixteen soon and she wants her freedom. But, is she willing or able to pay the price for her freedom?
Aunt Martha had warned 15-year old Nettie about Fools Mountain. It is not an actual mountain that could be found in the state of Arkansas where they lived, but that a person might find themselves if they did something foolish. Once atop Fools Mountain, a person has two choices: find your way safely down and learn how not to make the same mistake again or fall off the mountain and suffer the consequences of foolishness. Nettie takes a trip up Fools Mountain with her best friend Grace and Grace’s cousin Nathan. Nettie’s sixteenth birthday is coming up, and Nettie wants to do something special. Grace convinces Nathan to drive them in his beat-up car to the Blue Moon Bar in a neighboring town, where kids from the local black college hang out and where IDs are never checked. Nettie has never consumed alcohol and is violently ill, throwing up all over a young freshman, Ray, who befriends her in the bar. Nathan and Grace hustle her out to the car and head home, with Nettie passed out in the back seat. Nettie awakens to find herself intubated and connected to beeping monitors. Aunt Martha tells her she has been in an accident and blessedly has pulled through. Nettie questions Aunt Martha and the hospital staff about Grace and Nathan, but everyone dodges her question. Only when a second patient, Tonya, is put in Nettie’s room does the truth come out. Nettie is devastated by the loss of her longtime best friend and is also wracked with guilt at having been the reason the three of them had fled back home from the bar. Nettie realizes she has climbed to the very peak of Fools Mountain and has fallen and landed hard. With her life completely disrupted, Nettie now treats Aunt Martha with indifference, despite all that Aunt Martha has done for Nettie all her life. Even now, the old woman tries to help her overcome her grief and to realize that life goes on, even for a person who has put herself on top of Fools Mountain
Format: 5.5 x 8.5 Black & White Paperback, 42 pages
Publisher: Outskirts Press (Oct 06, 2019)
Genre: FICTION / Coming of Age