Saturday, December 28, 2019

Helene Dunbar

Helene Dunbar's new young adult novel is We Are Lost and Found.

From her Q&A with Deborah Kalb:

Q: How did you come up with the idea for We Are Lost and Found, and for your character Michael?

A: In a way, this book was always in the back of my mind and I was just waiting until I was a strong enough writer to tackle it.

I was talking to someone recently who mentioned how impossible it is to explain how invasive and prevalent the AIDS crisis was in the ‘80s. I wanted to capture that time on the cusp of the crisis before much was known about AIDS and before it became such a defining element in so many people’s lives.

In 1983, those in Michael’s age group weren’t demographically at risk, but we didn’t know that. My friends and I didn’t know that. And, in a way, fear of the unknown is a special type of fear because anything - down to the worst things you can imagine - are possible.

I’d been waiting for a book that captured this in the same way that it felt to me at the time (1983 was my senior year of high school), but I never really found one.

As for Michael, I see him as a sort of “everyman.” He’s trying to hold his friends together, his family together, and ultimately hold himself together. And he needs to...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue