Ruptured (Hardcover)

Ruptured By Joanne Rossmassler Fritz Cover Image
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The sensitive, suspenseful story of a family coping with a life-changing tragedy, told in stunning verse.

Is it wrong to grieve for someone who is still alive?

Claire’s mom and dad don’t talk to each other much anymore. And they definitely don’t laugh or dance the way they used to. Their tense, stilted stand offs leave thirteen-year-old Claire, an only child, caught in the middle. So when the family takes their annual summer vacation, Claire sticks her nose in a book and hopes for the best. Maybe the sunshine and ocean breeze will fix what’s gone wrong.

But while the family is away, Claire’s mother has a ruptured brain aneurysm—right after she reveals a huge secret to Claire. Though she survives the rupture, it seems like she is an entirely different person. Claire has no idea if her mom meant what she said, or if she even remembers saying it. With the weight of her mom’s confession on her shoulders, Claire must navigate fear, grief, and prospects for recovery.

Will her mom ever be the same? Will her parents stay together? And if the answer to either question is yes, how will Claire learn to live with what she knows? This beautifully written novel speaks to kids’ fears and credits their strength, and stems from the author’s incredible experience surviving two ruptured aneurysms.

An NCTE Notable Verse Novel

About the Author

Joanne Rossmassler Fritz is the author of Everywhere Blue, which was an NCTE Notable Verse Novel, a Mighty Girl Best Book of the Year, a Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year, and the Cybils Award Poetry Winner. She’s been writing for most of her life, but didn’t get serious about it until after she survived the first of two brain aneurysm ruptures. Joanne and her husband live in southeastern Pennsylvania, and are the parents of two grown sons. You can visit her at

Praise For…

★ "[A] thoughtful, sensitively told page-turner of a novel-in-verse. . . . Joanne Rossmassler Fritz (Everywhere Blue), herself a survivor of two ruptured aneurysms, weaves in accurate medical information without weighing down the narrative. Ruptured takes on momentous subjects with delicacy and nuance."—Shelf Awareness, Starred Review

"This story is packed with beautiful emotions, conveyed by equally apt descriptions. . . A survivor of two aneurysms, Fritz captures the trauma and recovery journey of this difficult experience with accuracy and skill. A poignant story that gives children many examples of resilience amid scary life moments. . ."School Library Journal

"Engaging verse ferries vulnerable emotion as poet Fritz (Everywhere Blue) excavates hope from medical drama in this quietly powerful story about healing."Publishers Weekly

"A compulsively readable account of a young teen’s journey toward hope."—Kirkus Reviews

Product Details
ISBN: 9780823452330
ISBN-10: 0823452336
Publisher: Holiday House
Publication Date: November 14th, 2023
Pages: 272
Language: English