Published: March 2013, Bywater Press. Available in paperback and e-book format.
It's the start of Summer 1979 and Rowan Marks is in what should be the start of a carefree yawning gulf between high school graduation and College starting.
However, it turns on its head and becomes a summer of discovery, of past secrets, self identification, sex and first love.
LEAP is a well written coming-of-age novel set in that mysterious yet exotic small-town American summer. Rowan is the cool girl - the one we would have all been in love with at high school - smart, progressive, spunky and a lesbian. She prides herself on building a wall around her inner-most self, but we as readers are invited in behind the scenes, and soon newcomer Cathering dismantles the bricks one by one as well, planting herself in Rowan's heart.
This is the kind of novel I've been waiting for - well written, imagery that speaks to the soul, and a coming-of-age story I can relate to on the surface as well as underneath. Rowan is a delightful character - not perfect, but real. The kind of 18-year-old we all wish we could have been.
As lesbian, coming-of-age and coming out literary fiction this book stands out as one of the best.