At first glance, thirteen-year-old Rose Ann Dixon's family life in 1960s Otara seems unremarkable. Her home, which she shares with her father, mother and five younger siblings, looks no different from those around it. But her close friend and neighbours know otherwise. A gift from her teacher on her thirteenth birthday is a turning point in Rose's life. After hearing Martin Luther King's inspiring words, Rose realises that everyone can have dreams and, what's more, they have a right to expect them to come true. Rose begins a journey from Otara to Wellington and finally to India. Sustained by the love and wisdom of a recently deceased aunt and the kindness of her best friend's family, Rose learns things that give her the strength she needs to save those she loves. Karen Mills writes a gripping story about family violence with profound understanding - and delightful humorous touches. Best suited for 11-18 years.
"I fell in love with Rose Dixon the moment I met her, trying to hide the evidence of her little sister's bedwetting from their violent unpredictable father... I wanted to cheer for her from the first page..." Elizabeth Smither
Karen Mills grew up in Otara in Auckland. Her home life was tumultuous and difficult. At the age of fourteen she left home to live with Jim and Kay Tichener, a married couple both teaching at her school. She credits their guidance and love as being instrumental in her survival. Karen became a teacher and spent thirty glorious and hilarious years teaching young people just like herself in South Auckland. Aside from her two beautiful adult daughters, Karen is most proud of her heart for children and animals. That she would write a novel was a promise she made herself as a young woman and always knew the right time to begin would declare itself. When Karen began volunteering for Destiny Rescue, a charity that rescues children from sexual slavery, she knew the time had come.