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Amber Dermont has published her short stories in numerous literary magazines and anthologies. She currently serves as an Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia.
January 2013 Debut of the Month and eBook of the Month. This is a remarkable debut novel, vivid and evocative and perfectly capturing the troubled lives of a group of super privileged teens in the Reagan era. One reviewer in the US called it a ‘distant cousin of the Great Gatsby’ and this stylish novel will have great appeal for fans of American fiction in the vein of The Secret History by Donna Tartt.
It is the summer of 1987. Jason Prosper is eighteen and on his way to Bellingham Academy, a school known for offering wayward privileged students a second chance - and Jason needs a second chance: ever since his best friend's suicide, his life has been badly adrift. At Bellingham, Jason joins the sailing team, and meets a compelling young woman called Aidan. His friends warn him off, saying she is 'damaged goods'. But Jason feels like damaged too, and the pair form an intense connection. But when a major hurricane gathers just off the coast, Jason's world begins to cloud over again. And when the full extent of the storm's damage is finally revealed, the truths it lays bare - and the secrets it dredges up - look set to alter the course of Jason life forever.
This short story is excerpted from the upcoming collection of stories Damage Control by Amber Dermont, to be published in March 2013.One by one, the wives of Portsmouth, Rhode Island are disappearing from Darling Vista Park. Detective Mitchell Landry searches for the rhyme, reason, and meaning behind each of these disappearances by investigating their husbands and trying to find the missing connections between them. But are there connections to be made, or are these random similarities merely coincidences? Who had the means, motive, and opportunity to steal the wives of Portsmouth? What happened to them, and more importantly, why? As Detective Landry delves deeper into the lives of these women, he tries to makes sense of his own wife's suicide, and wonders why some questions simply have no answer.
Jason Prosper grew up in the elite world of Manhattan penthouses, Maine summer estates, old-boy prep schools, and exclusive sailing clubs. A smart, athletic teenager, Jason maintains a healthy, humorous disdain for the trappings of affluence, preferring to spend afternoons sailing with Cal, his best friend and boarding-school roommate. When Cal commits suicide during their junior year at Kensington Prep, Jason is devastated by the loss and transfers to Bellingham Academy. There, he meets Aidan, a fellow student with her own troubled past, and they embark on a tender, awkward, deeply emotional relationship. When a major hurricane hits the New England coast, the destruction it causes brings with it another upheaval in Jasons life, forcing him to make sense of a terrible secret that has been buried by the boys he considers his friends. Set against the backdrop of the 1987 stock market collapse, The Starboard Sea is an examination of the abuses of class privilege, the mutability of sexual desire, the thrill and risk of competitive sailing, and the adult cost of teenage recklessness. It is a powerful and provocative novel about a young man finding his moral center, trying to forgive himself, and accepting the gift of love.