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Fingerprints of You

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  668 ratings  ·  128 reviews
Lemon grew up with Stella, a single mom who wasn’t exactly maternal. Stella always had a drink in her hand and a new boyfriend every few months, and when things got out of hand, she would whisk Lemon off to a new town for a fresh beginning. Now, just as they are moving yet again, Lemon discovers that she is pregnant from a reckless encounter—with a guy Stella had been flir ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.72  · 
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 ·  668 ratings  ·  128 reviews

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Fingerprints of You is Kristen-Paige Madonia’s debut novel. Set in South Virginia, the story centres on seventeen year old Lemon Raine Williams, and her mother, Stella. Stella and Lemon never stay in one place too long as Stella is usually trying to escape an abusive boyfriend, and soon they are on the road again. But this time is different, Lemon is leaving behind the father of her unborn child. In a new town Lemon is befriended by Emmy and her boyfriend, Dylan. Soon Lemon and Emmy are planning ...more
Mar 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For starters, I'd like to mention the cover - which, seriously, isn't it gorgeous? It is. And it's also related to the novel itself, which makes for a refreshing change, considering most female-centric YA books now just have a random girl splashed on the cover, and that's the extent of the work.

This novel is quite... weird. Which, in turn, is a weird way to put it, but no less true because of that.
The narration is stripped bare and refreshingly essential, free of long-winded descriptions and ful
Ashley Daviau
Sep 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely freaking adored this book! It was such a powerful, beautiful story about an all too relevant issue these days. I don't usually relate to books about teenage pregnancy, having never been through it myself, but something about this story was different. Lemon is a very real character and I couldn't help but fall in love with her for it. I see a lot of myself in her as a character and I think that's why I related to her so much. I also loved the relationship between Lemon and her mom St ...more
Lena ♫ ♪
Jan 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
You guys know what a huge fan of contemporary YA I am, especially when it's a coming-of-age story. With that said, when I first heard about FINGERPRINTS OF YOU, I knew I had to read it. I mean, look at the cover. Look at the summary! It just has to be good, right? Well, it wasn't good...

It was fabulous!

The story focuses on Lemon and the dynamic relationship she has with her mother, Stella. Much to Lemon's dismay, she's traveling down the same path as Stella, and it's not necessarily the best ro
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
With Fingerprints of You I knew I was reading something different very early on. I’ve never read anything like it. Not only is the subject something you don’t come across too often in Young Adult novels, but the writing is gorgeous. It was one of those ‘this is a debut author?’ cases. The book isn’t long, not even 300 pages, but Kristen-Paige Madonia fills it with so much story. I felt like these characters became a part of my life.

Lemon and Stella have been on their own for years. Stella moves
Anna (Literary Exploration)
More of my reviews can be found on my blog: Literary Exploration

If you've been following me for awhile, you know I'm not a big fan of contemporary fiction. There's just something lacking in most contemps for me. Whether it's the excitement of going on an adventure, the paranormal creatures, or some other difference, contemporary style never seems to grab me like everything else does. However, there are a few diamonds in the rough and Fingerprints of You is definitely one of them. Honestly, I nev
Books & Sensibility
Aug 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Kristen-Paige Madonia just happens to be a Virginia author and I was fortunate enough to meet her at Fountain Bookstore in August. While there, Madonia discussed was how she did not write this book to be a YA, she just wrote a novel with a teenage protagonist and it was decided it would sell best as a YA. I love this idea, because by not being written as a YA, Fingerprints of You avoids a lot of the tropes and cliches associated with the genre.

17-year-old Lemon's whole life has been her and her
Oct 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really dont know where to start. I really love Fingerprints of You.. And to be honest i really wanted to befriend Lemon.. Let me explain why..

At 17 years old Lemon is more of an adult than her mother Stella.. Stella is a single mother and not the worlds best role model, shes damaged Stella relies on men to establish her self worth and moves after every break up.. So when Lemon is caught with a guy her mom has been eyeing and not like in a sexual way Stella is ready to hightail it but not befo
Sara - thelookingglassreads
Jul 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
The cover is what first drew me into Fingerprints of You, especially when I learned that it was designed by a tattoo artist! Then, after reading the summary, I found out it was a road trip novel and that Judy Blume blurbed it! There was no stopping me from reading it after all that.

Fingerprints of You is a story of growing up, facing and moving on from your past, and embracing life for all it has to offer. I fell in instantly in love with Lemon’s story of love, loss, and life. I highly recommend
Aug 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
At 17 years old, a massive influx of thoughts and emotions often make it difficult to convey the depth and surprising strength of feelings and experiences. Paradoxically, by the time we are able to articulate ourselves genuinely, the distance of time makes it almost impossible truly recall and adequately express those same thoughts and emotions. In her debut novel, Fingerprints of You, author Kristen-Paige Madonia has managed to do just that – giving a realistic, accurate, and genuine voice to a ...more
Jul 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Lemon embarks on a journey that all of us long for at some point or another: to find what's true. For Lemon, it's about her past and her present. It's also about growing up and choosing her own path.

Of course, there are complications besides simply being a 17-year-old high school student on a cross-country Greyhound bus trip. Lemon is also pregnant.

Kristen-Paige writes with both compassion and an intensity that does not let the story—or its characters—off the hook for their choices. Love is comp
Nov 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Coming soon to a bookstore near you! Thoughtful coming-of-age story for Young Adults, with fully realized characters and San Francisco as the perfect backdrop. Descriptions of family bonds are spot on. Well done KP!
Nov 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
Fingerprints of You is one of those quiet contemporary YA novels that packs an emotional punch if you're in just the right mood when you read it. I absolutely enjoyed reading Lemon's story, and thought it was interesting to see things unfold as they did.
Sep 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Late teens, as well as adults
Shelves: library
One of the best books I've read all year.

Review coming soon.
Aug 08, 2012 rated it liked it
Meet Lemon. She is an average girl, living with her young mother, Stella. Stella, however, isn't exactly normal. She is a struggling artist type that bounces between guys every few months. Stella moves Lemon to a new city at least once a year. By the time she is sixteen, Lemon is pretty much used to Stella's way of life and she knows what to expect. But she is less than pleased with it. The crappy apartments, the seedy guys, having to leave friends constantly. Fed up with not having her opinion ...more
David Hudnut
Oct 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
An amazing character driven book

I met the author at a publishing event and decided to read her book. I had no idea what it was about, but I thought it would be interesting to read her writing. It's always fun to read work by someone you either know or at least have met. It gives the work an immediacy and spice that you don't get from books by authors who are merely figments and fragments of a media persona. You wonder what inspired the author to write such a book. Did she live through experience
Nov 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pacific-u-mfa
Lemon, the seventeen-year-old protagonist of Madonia’s debut novel, has an unusual name. Her mother, Stella, explains it to the tattoo artist she is trying to bed this way: “She’s sharp and sour since the day she popped out.” But Lemon knows her name comes from the color. Stella is a painter and chooses a different paint every month, and the September when our heroine was born was the month of Lemon Yellow. By the end of the book, however, Stella says, “You know why I named you Lemon? . . . That ...more
Michelle (FabBookReviews)

This beautiful debut novel by Kristen-Paige Madonia is an elegantly written coming-of-age story. Fingerprints of You is a character-driven, slow-burning novel, one that may take time to get acquainted with- with main character Lemon, with the author's writing rhythm, and the quick transitions between present and past. It's not showy, flashy, obvious, or loud, but it sure packs many emotional punches. For me, it's one of those reads that I think will stick with me for a long time- with passages I
Nov 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing

Lemon was born to her single mother when Stella was only seventeen. The two have been a team since her birth, always drifting from one town to another when her mother decided she had enough with where they were living or a bad breakup with a current boyfriend. Her unusual name came about because of her mother's artistic inclinations and how she gets hooked on a new color each month. As Lemon drifts through life she decides that she needs to experience sex and her fi
Feb 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
From the first time I saw Fingerprints of You, I knew I'd love it, and I'll admit it was mainly because of the cover - this book is gorgeous! I am totally in love with the whole design; it's subtle but powerful and just so beautiful. And that's how I feel about the actual novel, too.

Lemon is not your average main character, and not just because of her unusual (and awesome!) name. She makes every possible bad decision, but there's an honesty about her voice that makes this a compelling instead of
Jun 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
Admittedly, I was drawn to the book because of the gorgeous tattoo cover art (I admit that I tend to judge books by their covers). After reading, I was pleased to discover that Kristen-Paige Madonia’s debut, Fingerprints of You, is an excellent example of the rare category of YA literary fiction.

Lemon is the only daughter of Stella, a woman who never quite grew up. Lemon and her artistic mother have bounced around small towns for most of her childhood, leaving when Stella’s relationship with her
Cassie Gutman (happybooklovers)
Go see the full review at my blog at

I've had this just sitting on my shelf for about a year, and I picked it up on a whim because of another blogger's choice to put it in their top ten books they read this year. I must say, it's not what I normally would have picked up, but it was a phenomenal book.

Lemon (fantastic name) was such an interesting character. She began by telling the reader when she lost her virginity, and that she wanted to pursue this guy a
Jun 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2012
Oh, Lemon. You wonderful girl. I loved your story so much!

Lemon is the main character in Fingerprints of You by Kristen-Paige Madonia. She is a 17 year old girl who has lived a somewhat disjointed life with Stella, her mother, moving her around her whole life. I felt really connected to Lemon. My mom was not really much like Stella but I did move around a lot and I had the same situations she did with making friends and then moving away to try and make new friends. More than that though, she is
Dec 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
The cover is what originally intrigued me at the book store. I couldn't bring myself to buy a book that I had heard nothing about though. However, I was pleasantly surprised after reading a library copy.

The character development in this book was what made it so spectacular. There is so much growth, and it wasn't just for the main character, a young girl by the name of Lemon.

Lemon has a pretty unstable life set up with her single mother, who loves to grab the attention of men. They are packing up
Nov 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teens
This is an edgy novel of soul searching. Pregnant teen, Lemon Raine, embarks on a road trip to sort out her own family issues before beginning her own. Lemon is mature for her age, but makes a few mindless life-changing mistakes. The characters are flawed, multidimensional and believable. Teens who thrive on drama will love following Lemon's introspective narrative as she navigates her messed-up home life, as well as her journey to San Francisco and the revelations it provides. Definitely for ol ...more
Oct 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-to-read
Really like this book - it's been on my shelf for over a year, and glad I finally read it. It's young adult, with an emphasis on the adult part...definitely high school or higher. Lots of places where it could have turned predictable, and almost did in a few, but overall the story felt original and real. My main complaint is that I never felt I got a good feeling of how Lemon looks or talks. I was trying to fit her into the kinds of people I know, and she doesn't fit entirely with any one group. ...more
A.K. Benninghofen
Sep 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mothers and daughters
This is not your vampire/zombie/apocalypse fair that seems to be dominating the YA market lately. It's a heartfelt coming of age story, beautifully written. Very much about the complex relationships of mothers and daughters, themes of home and identity explored through memorable characters and the artfully rendered, ever-changing landscape of their lives. Subjects like sex, alcohol and drugs are dealt with honestly and without agenda. I will enjoy reading it again along with my daughter when she ...more
Oct 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen-pregnancy, ya
I started reading this after hearing the author talk at a conference. It took me a while to read it because I have had so much going on, but I just finished it and thoroughly enjoyed it!

I absolutely love the cover and chapter art for the book! I also enjoyed the characters and the plot. This was not an action-packed book, but I love how you get to know Lemon and get to accompany her on her journey to discover herself. It had a sweet, satisfying ending.

I look forward to more good books from this
Dec 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, 2012
I really loved this book. Although it was slow at times, I still wanted to find out what would happen to pregnant 17 year-old Lemon. The story of her journey across the country with her best friend in search of the father she has never met, isn't anything new, but in the process of "finding" herself, she learns what a family really is. It was as pretty on the inside as it was on the outside. So go ahead, judge the book by its cover.
Carmen Rodrigues
May 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
I read the opening chapter of F.O.Y. on Kristen-Paige's web site (, and it was phenomenal. The rest of the book is equally as lovely. A wonderful coming-of-age story! ...more
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YA Today Book Club: S.C. YA Event Tonight! 1 9 Nov 29, 2012 10:31AM  
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Kristen-Paige Madonia is the author of Invisible Fault Lines (Simon & Schuster BFYR, 2016) and Fingerprints of You (S&S BFYR, 2012); recent short fiction can be found in Five Chapters, New Orleans Review, American Fiction: Best Previously Unpublished Stories by Emerging Writers, and the Greensboro Review. She was awarded a 2011 Sewanee Writers’ Conference Tennessee Williams Scholarship and has rec ...more

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