Tommy Wallach's new book Thanks For The Trouble is the story of meeting someone who sends your world spiralling out of control.
Since his father died, Parker Santé hasn't spoken a single word in five years. While his classmates in San Francisco plan for bright futures, he skips school to hang out in hotels, killing time by watching (and sometimes stealing from) the guests.
But when Parker meets an intriguing silver-haired girl named Zelda Toth, a girl who claims to be quite a bit older than she looks - as in, 246 years old - he'll discover there just might be a few things left worth living for.
Thanks For The Trouble is NOT your typical YA fiction love story - it mixes magic with realism and important issues, there's no sappy dialogue, and zero cliche story - so we got Tommy to give us his top five unique love stories for anyone who's DONE with the cheesy crap.
1. Let the Right One In, both the Swedish and American versions –
This was a direct inspiration for Thanks for the Trouble. I don't think there's ever quite been a love story like this one, about an eleven year old boy and a vampire girl who's hundreds of years old.
2. Before Sunrise, dir. Richard Linklater –
Another direct inspiration for Thanks for the Trouble. I'd already written two drafts of the book and couldn't quite solve it, then I saw this movie. Before Sunrise tells the story of an American man who meets a French woman, and the night they spend together in Paris. It made me realize how satisfying a small, concise story can be. The older drafts of Thanks for the Trouble took place over months; the final draft takes place over three days.
3. Labyrinth, dir. Jim Henson –
I recently wrote a long piece about this movie for Sparknotes, but to keep things simple, Labyrinth is a musical for kids that manages to tell the story of a young girl fantasising about the man that her mother left her father for. WHAT?! (I'm totally serious.)
4. Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy –
The love story between Levin and Kitty is one of the sweetest and most beautiful stories in literature. The other love story in the book is, well…complicated.
5. My Struggle, by Karl Ove Knausgaard –
It's about a man in love with writing about himself, more or less, and goddamn if it isn't enthralling.
Reckon you'll pick up a copy of Thanks For The Trouble? It's out NOW so make sure you get reading because we can confirm it's bloody brill.
Let us know your fave unique love story in a tweet to @Sugarscape please, guys and gals.
NOW READ THIS LOT TOO