You can’t change the past. . . .
When Michael fires his new rifle into the air on his seventeenth birthday, he never imagines that the bullet will end up killing someone. But it does—and Michael’s world is changed forever. Desperate, he wrestles with his guilt and keeps silent as his life begins to fall apart.
When Jenna’s father is killed in a freak Fourth of July accident, she’s devastated. As she grieves, she tries to understand why she no longer feels comfortable with her boyfriend, Jason, and why a guy named Michael keeps appearing in her dreams. . . .
Swallowing Stones is a haunting novel about choices . . . and devastating consequences.
"Readers will quickly become absorbed in this electrifying portrayal of fear and deception." –Publishers Weekly
“The unexpected consequences of celebratory gunfire are the topic of this well-written novel . . . [It] will appeal to a broad audience, and it is a great vehicle for discussions about guns, violence, and responsibility.” –VOYA
“When 17-year-old Michael discovers that he has accidentally killed the father of a schoolmate, he wrestles with his own guilt until he can no longer keep his terrible secret. A compassionate story focusing on both the killer and the family left to grieve the loss of a father and husband.” –School Library Journal
“Deliberately paced but deeply felt drama.” –Kirkus Reviews
Joyce McDonald is the author of several critically acclaimed young adult and middle-grade novels, including Shades of Simon Gray, an Edgar Allan Poe Award nominee and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, and Devil on My Heels, nominated for five state awards. She is also a poet and is on the faculty of the low-residency MFA in writing program at Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky. She lives in Forks Township, Pennsylvania, with her husband. Visit Joyce at joycemcdonald.net and on Twitter at @JoyceMcDonald46.