I ran away on a Tuesday afternoon in late March. Six pm and I was headed south-west in a train that smelt stale.
Seventeen-year-old Adelaide is sick of being expected to succeed on other people's terms. She's made a new plan- drop out of her fancy boarding school to read and dream. She just needs to stick it out at home for one more year and then she'll be free.
But before she can work out her next move, Addie's grandad offers her a job at the local historical society. It's dusty and messy, like her hometown, like her new life.
Then she accidentally kisses Jarrod, the boy who spends his days getting into trouble. But he's as stuck as she is and Addie starts to wonder that maybe when you really want something in life, you've actually got to do something about it.
A heartfelt story about love, friendship and untidy towns.
Kate O'Donnell is a writer, editor and bookseller specialising in children's and young adult literature. She has a BA in History and French from the University of Melbourne and studied Professional Writing and Editing at RMIT. Untidy Towns is her first novel.