This novel was written by Canadian author Miriam Toews. It describes the struggles of Nomi, a defiant teenager, who is struggling with the Mennonite values of the East Village where she lives with her devout father. Both her older sister and her mother had separately left the stifling community and Nomi is dealing with this loss while fighting against the Mennonite ways.
Her father is kind and a bit absent allowing Nomi the freedom to roam and get into trouble including drug use, sex and, in the end, arson. Nomi remains devoted to her dad and committed to stay with him despite his ties to the church. This novel described religious fanaticism and her feeling of hopelessness knowing that she had few options and was resigned to work in the chicken plant once she graduated from high school.
This book won the CBC’s Canada Reads (2006) and the author was said to have drawn on her personal experiences growing up Mennonite.