Title: THE HOUSE ON GROSVENOR STREET
Genre: YA Fantasy
Word Count: 95,000 words
Fourteen-year-old Freddy just wants to stay beneath the radar, surviving high school by not drawing attention to herself. However, everything in her life seems to be going wrong at once. Her friends are pulling away from her, her mother and stepfather have disappeared into their own little world, her stepbrother’s presence in her house is becoming intrusive, and Freddy’s constant directionless anger is beginning to escape her control. When a scatterbrained private investigator and a sarcastic teenager named Josiah move in next door and attach themselves to Freddy, it seems just another complication. Then Freddy and Josiah walk through a door into the middle of a battle in medieval Sweden. Moreover, Josiah is completely unsurprised that they have done so.
Freddy finds herself bouncing around through space-time, forced to negotiate the perils of Stone Age social customs, futuristic gang warfare, burgeoning hormones, drug-induced poetry composed by a manic-depressive, and an incarnation of chaos with a fixation on squirrels. Simultaneously, she must both try to find a way back home and puzzle out exactly what her new neighbours—whoever and whatever they really are—want with her and her fragmented family.
THE HOUSE ON GROSVENOR STREET is a darkly comic time-travel tale that also deals with the power, and the danger, inherent in stories. This 95,000-word novel follows Freddy’s struggle to come to terms with herself against the backdrops of high school and the entire history of the human race, not necessarily in that order.
Freddy never knew exactly how well or how badly she remembered that encounter in the park. She hadn’t done much with the memory—taking it out whenever she touched the key, but not for more than a few seconds at a time—and she sometimes thought she preferred it vague. But she found it varied much more than her other memories did. Some things that had happened to her she remembered sharply, as if she had stepped away from the time of the memory only just now; some had faded to a fuzzy grey. Mel told her once that this was supposedly normal and had something to do with synapses, but Freddy didn’t pay much attention to Mel when she used words that were bigger than she was. The encounter in the park was sharp and fuzzy at the same time. She could feel the wood of the bench digging into her legs; she could see the key flashing between the woman’s fingers. She thought she remembered every word they had spoken. Maybe she was just pretending she did. A lot of the images were blurred, incomplete.
She thought it had gone like this:
The voices from the house faded behind her as Freddy tore across the front yard and then the street, heading into the park. She had run into the park a lot lately. Her parents didn’t ever really talk any more; it was all screaming, broken by intervals of icy silence.