“Readers will be swept away by this angsty survival tale of a teen willing to take her future into her own hands…Hosey touches on issues such as unexpected friendship, trust, abortion, rape, courage, hope, incarcerated parents, drugs, physical abuse, and violence, though the book never becomes overly graphic. Each of these issues is intricately woven throughout the novel and leads Iphigenia to answer questions of identity and self. Recommend to fans of Patricia McCormick’s Sold or Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak.” —School Library Journal
Running away from home hasn’t solved Iphigenia Murphy’s problems. In fact, it’s only a matter of time before they’ll catch up with her. Iffy is desperate to find her long-lost mother, and, so far, in spite of the need to forage for food and shelter and fend off an unending number of creeps, living in Queens’ Forest Park has felt safer than living at home. But as the summer days get shorter, it all threatens to fall apart.
A novel that explores the sustaining love of friendship, the kindness of strangers, and the indelible bond of family, Iphigenia Murphy captures the gritty side of 1992 Queens, the most diverse borough in New York City. Just like Iffy, the friends she makes in the park—Angel, a stray dog with the most ridiculous tail; Corinne, a young trans woman who is escaping her own abusive situation; and Anthony, a former foster kid from upstate whose parents are addicts—each seek a place where they feel at home. Whether fate or coincidence has brought them together, within this community of misfits Iffy can finally be herself, but she still has to face the effects of abandonment and abuse—and the possibility that she may be pregnant. During what turns out to be a remarkable journey to find her mother, will Iffy ultimately discover herself?
“Iphigenia Murphy by Sara Hosey is bound to be one of 2020’s best contemporary YA books…We can tell this story is going to be chock full of heart.” —Hypable
“An exploration of how, and why, girls can vanish in plain sight…High stakes and [a] heart-wrenching conclusion.” —Kirkus Reviews
“What a privilege to follow Iffy on her journey. My heart is full.” —M-E Girard, author of Girl Mans Up
“Written in 90s straight-up Queens vernacular, Hosey’s gritty and unflinching coming-of-age story offers hope without skimping on real-life issues. One of the most impressive things about Hosey’s prose is her subtlety, allowing the reader to depict the hardships many people face by her use of silence. Iphigenia Murphy is a heart-wrenching, gritty, critical read.” —Mia Siegert, author of Jerkbait and the forthcoming Somebody Told Me
Sara Hosey holds a PhD in American literature from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and is an associate professor of English and women and gender studies at Nassau Community College. Her book, Home Is Where the Hurt Is: Media Depictions of Wives and Mothers (McFarland, 2019), looks at representations of the domestic in popular culture. Sara grew up in Queens and now lives in Sea Cliff, New York, with her partner and their children. She is working on a second novel.