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3.29  ·  Rating Details ·  269 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
Home is supposed to be a place you belong. It's supposed to be parents who are there and siblings who bug you and a life that feels comfortable. It's not supposed to be an absentee mother or a drowned sister. But that's Vera's reality, and she can't stand it anymore. So she runs. She ends up in an old mining town in the middle of the California desert. It's hot, it's dusty ...more
Hardcover, 364 pages
Published June 9th 2011 by Viking Juvenile
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(showing 1-30)
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Cheri Williams
May 28, 2011 Cheri Williams rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction-ya, 2011
Tragedy spurs Vera to leave everything she knows for small-town desert living. But is she living--or running?

I don't typically read books written in verse so I'm no expert, but I loved the way no word was wasted, no cliches regurgitated. DISPLACEMENT is beautifully written, fully developed, thought provoking and satisfying to the very end.

arc provided by publisher
R. J
Aug 05, 2011 R. J rated it really liked it
This book was written in verse, which to me made it a quick read. I found the story to be engaging & enjoyed the story as it unfolded.
Wendi Lee
May 31, 2014 Wendi Lee rated it really liked it
Reviewed for ALL WHO WANDER Book Blog...

A novel written in prose can be a hard feat to pull off. I have to admit, I'm always wary about reading one -- it's so easy for the novel to be more about making a statement and less about actual substance. Also, I'm incredibly picky when it comes to poetry, I've been to one too many bad open night mikes!

Displacement was a quick read, in part because of the prose style. But I also found myself drawn into the world of Vera, independent enough to uproot hers
Martha Schwalbe
Jan 04, 2012 Martha Schwalbe rated it liked it
When I talk to student about making connections, I made lots of them in this book. Vera buys a drawer full of post cards and uses them to mark points in her search for herself. When I was younger I had a collection of post cards, not that I bought at once but when I went places. I did not write on them about what I did, but looked on them after I returned and thought of all the possible things I could have done. The funny thing is, upon reflection, is that many of the possibilities were romantic ...more
Oct 24, 2011 Danielle rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, contemporary
Good story, also a quick read since it is written in blank verse. I found the poem format let all the important details through and allowed the reader (me) to better focus on the story without being weighed down with lengthy descriptions. This was also a nice contemporary follow up to the last book I read, Survival; I wasn't in the mood to read anything too upbeat and happy. Not that I'm saying there isn't a happy ending; I would call it an everything works out, good ending. Definitely check thi ...more
Jan 11, 2013 Deborah rated it it was amazing
Sometimes in life one has to get away from everything to be able to recharge whether it is from the stress of a job or a death in the family or a questionable relationship.

Vera has to get away. She is suffering from a loss which she is having trouble dealing with. She leaves her home on the west coast and travels to a small, remote mining town in the desert to think through her problem only to encounter more problems. While here she is unsuccessful in finding solace and realizes she really needs
Mar 20, 2012 Marinda rated it did not like it
This book was hard to read at first. It's supposedly written in "prose" but it's just jittery nonsense half the time. It took me about 3 hours to finish it.
Sally Kruger
Vera needs to escape the chaos at home. Her younger sister disappeared and is presumed drowned. Her mother spends more time in foreign countries than with her children, and her older sister is focused on her own life without enough left over for anyone else. Vera's love of geology leads her to the desert where she hopes to occupy her time with rocks and not the memories that haunt every moment.

When she arrives in the tiny town of Garrett, she is welcomed by a conglomeration of interesting people
Aug 26, 2013 Hannah rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, verse
Vera has run away from everything. She has decided to go where nobody knows her and what she has been through. Her younger sister Amy was declared dead after she went on a night swim with a bunch of kids from the wrong crowd. Vera had talked to her older sister, Roley, about getting Amy away from the bad kids, but Roley said to lighten up about it. So after Amy's death Vera needed to get away from everyone and everything. It didn't help that her two best friends who had made summer plans with he ...more
Amanda (Born Bookish)
Having read Chalta's first book, Because I Am Furniture, I was a little worried this would be another heavy-subject story, beautifully written but upsetting. While Displacement does tackle the heavy subject of losing ones sibling it was not as emotionally upsetting as I was expecting.

How often do you meet a main character who's a seventeen year old girl, studying geology, who runs away from home to the desert because she's excited about the geological possibilities? Vera was such a refreshing M
Aug 01, 2013 Karissa rated it liked it
Shelves: library-2013
I don't usually read books in verse. I say this every time I read a book that is in verse, but it's true. I can count on my hand probably the number of these books I've read. They are starting to grow on me, but I don't think I'll actively seek them out. One of the pros of reading a book like this is that you can read it in one day, like I tend to do.

Vera has to get away. It doesn't matter where. She just needs to be as far away from home as possible. She ends up in a small dusty town, taking u
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 19, 2011 Sarah rated it liked it
Vera is determined to make a new life for herself. After her sister's accidental drowning, she finds her mother absent from their lives, and her older sister tired of looking after her siblings. Vera finds herself in the small town of Garrett, a deserted mining town in the vicinity of Death Valley. The town is mostly abandoned, and Vera goes about making herself useful. She obtains work with a local potter at his kiln, as well as some bookkeeping for an Indian boy, Lon, who is a local art dealer ...more
Sep 20, 2014 Kat rated it liked it
This book is incredibly hard for me to rate. The plot is good, but I wish I knew more about her sister. The descriptions are excellent! I can taste the grit of sand in my mouth, smell the odors, and see the place she stays. Was it a life-changer? No. Was it a tearjerker or belly laugh book? No. It is a simple story about a displaced and broken person living with a group of others in a place. The characters are real and the place is a character in the novel as well.

See? Hard to pin down.

While this book was incredibly short and written in a style that didn't make much sense to me, I really liked it.

I loved the narrator's voice and sympathized with her pain. In hoping for a geographic cure to her suffering, Vera runs away. She ends up hitching a ride to a dusty, mining town and squatting in an abandoned home with a "For Sale" sign.

The town is filled with wonderful characters, who brought personality to this novel. Vera herself is a tragic and broken young woman, who cannot esca
Sep 05, 2012 Heidi rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, read-2012
Seventeen-year-old Vera leaves home in search of peace following the death of her younger sister, Amy. Her love of geology leads her to a small desert town where she meets the few folks who remain there including Lon, a half-Hopi man who piques her interest. Finding a box of unused postcards, she frequently selects one to be addressed to her absentee mother, whom she called “The Moth;” the postcards are not sent. Emotional trauma is a big point in this novel in verse as Vera refuses to contact C ...more
Oct 11, 2012 Jess rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I have come to really love Thalia Chaltas' work. Her other book, Because I am Furniture was the book that taught me not to have prejudices against books written in poem format.

Her style of writing is beautiful and the stories she chooses to tell are rich with emotion.

I am eagerly awaiting any other work she does.
Jan 08, 2013 Deborah rated it really liked it
Sometimes in life one has to get away from everything to be able to recharge whether it is from the stress of a job or a death in the family or a questionable relationship.

Vera has to get away. She is suffering from a loss which she is having trouble dealing with. She leaves her home on the west coast and travels to a small, remote mining town in the desert to think through her problem only to encounter more problems. While here she is unsuccessful in finding solace and realizes she really needs
Jan 02, 2014 Kat rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
I liked reading this book, but overall I feel like it was kind of pointless. The book didn't particularly take me anywhere. The characters were likable, but I feel like there was so much more that could have been done with them to spice up the story.
It starts out as a girl going to the desert and you don't know why. Then she gets a job and you start finding out why she is there. There are a few minor scuffles and it's over. While it was a fun and short read, I think it was pointless and anti-cl
Nov 17, 2010 Kelly rated it it was ok

Not as engaging as I'd like, and I'm not sure the verse set up helps the story much. Vera is dealing with loss by running away from everything and going to a desert town. I didn't find myself connecting with her nor really caring about her outcome that much -- she never gave me much to latch on to.

This could have done with a little more background, a few pieces of the pre-arrival story.

Full review here:
Forever Young Adult
Graded By: Jenny
Cover Story: Float Away
BFF Charm: Yay?
Swoonworthy Scale: 2
Talky Talk: Your Poetic License Has Been Renewed
Bonus Factors: The Desert, Post Cards
Relationship Status: An Ode To You

Read the full book report here.
BAYA Librarian
Feb 10, 2012 BAYA Librarian rated it it was ok
Vera is escaping everything that reminds her younger sister who has recently died. Written in free verse Vera comes across as a very unlikable character and will have the reader wanted to shake her at times. She loses herself in a small mining town and takes on two part-time jobs. A touch of mystery will propel the story forward though it leads to an unsatisfactory conclusion. Overall a story that leaves something to be desired.
Apr 05, 2016 Brittany rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
This book is in poem form, but it's told as any story would be. There's nothing poetic about it and that was a major let down for me. The writing honestly wasn't even that great. For it to be in poem form was such a waste of pages. I know I'm being harsh, but that's because I expected so much more from this book. I was interested because I thought I'd be getting Ellen Hopkins sort of writing style here, but nope. This was a major let down and I'm highly disappointed.
Dec 10, 2011 Dolores rated it really liked it
From the author of "Because I am Furniture." The story of a young girl dealing with the death of her younger sister amid emotional isolation from her mother and older sister. Not quite as intense as Furniture, but there were some intriguing characters here, and Vera seemed to have a realistic and relatable voice.
Rebecca McNutt
I don't understand all the bad reviews! Displacement was a first-class YA novel, really gripping and emotional, yet down to earth and believable. I can certainly relate to the small-town mining setting and I loved the characters.
Aug 25, 2013 Alice rated it really liked it
Sometimes I come across a book that I feel an immense amount of respect for. This is one of those books. At first it was "ok" but then "asdfghklmaaaaaanoooooooooo!" or something like that. It was lovely book. I am so very happy I read it!
Dana M.
Jun 20, 2011 Dana M. rated it liked it
I didn't think I would like the story-told-in-verse style, but I found it fit the tone of the novel very well. I would read more by this author.
Sep 23, 2011 Annettelang12 rated it liked it
About a girl coming to grips with her sister dying. Has to figure it out on her own. Travels to the desert not sure students will connect with the story.
Jul 30, 2015 LeA rated it liked it
The plot and the style of writing were very interesting, which made it a very good book.
Jessica V
Dec 01, 2012 Jessica V rated it liked it
Short but with deftly painted characters and setting. Fans of "Because I Am Furniture" will like this book as well.
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Thalia Chaltas (Author, Because I Am Furniture, Viking, 2009) worked hard at her luck to get her Young Adult novel Because I Am Furniture published by Viking. She has been writing for children since just before the turn of the century. The current century. Running her medical transcription business has taught her the value of editing, since most physicians don’t sound brilliant without a transcrip ...more
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