“Raw. . .enthralling . . . ” In Sight of Stars “is an intense, sometimes graphic, totally heartbreaking portrait of a character who will keep pages turning.”-Booklist, Starred review

In Sight of Stars deals with mental health, Vincent Van Gogh, family and recovery; all told in some of the most beautiful prose you will probably ever read. As far as I’m concerned, [this novel] is the equivalent to “Starry Night Over the Rhone,” making Gae Polisner the Vincent Van Gogh of young adult fiction.” – Teen Reads

In a sea of recent contemporary novels about teens with mental illnesses, this one stands out for its strong writing, likable protagonist, and overwhelmingly positive messages.” – School Library Journal

“An achingly fierce exploration of the way the world wounds us and heals us. If you love exquisitely written coming-of-age stories that will leave you breathless, In Sight of Stars is for you.” – Jeff Zentner, William C. Morris award-winning author of The Serpent King and Goodbye Days

“What a book. So kind and forgiving and real.” – Geoff Herbach, award-winning author of Stupid Fast and Hooper

“There is something deeply human about the way Polisner writes. . .” – Young Adult Books Central


Seventeen-year-old Klee’s father was the center of his life. He introduced Klee to the great museums of New York City and the important artists on their walls, he told him stories made of myths and magic. Until his death.

Now, forced to live in the suburbs with his mom, Klee can’t help but feel he’s lost all the identifying parts of himself—his beloved father, weekly trips to the MoMA, and the thrumming energy of New York City. That is until he meets wild and free Sarah in art class, with her quick smiles and jokes about his “brooding.” Suddenly it seems as if she’s the only thing that makes him happy. But when an act of betrayal sends him reeling, Klee lands in what is bitingly referred to as the “Ape Can,” a psychiatric hospital for teens in Northollow.

While there, he undergoes intensive therapy and goes back over the pieces of his life to find out what was real, what wasn’t, and whether he can stand on his own feet again. Told in alternating timelines, leading up to the event that gets him committed and working towards getting back out, Gae Polisner’s In Sight of Stars is a gorgeous novel told in minimalist strokes to maximal effect, about what makes us fall apart and how we can put ourselves back together again.

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Press and Awards for THE MEMORY OF THINGS:

“Gripping. . . A “Mesmerizing Teenage Tale. . . ” from The New York Daily News * A Wave of 9/11 Novels Seeks. . . from The New York Times * To Remember 9/11, Read a Book from The Huffington Post * 4 Powerful Novels to help young readers. . . from The Christian Science Monitor.

Winner: 2017 Wisconsin State Reading Association Finalist; 2016 Nerdy Book Club Award, Young Adult Fiction; 2016 Finalist, New York Library Association Three Apples Book Award; 2017 Finalist, Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading Book Award; 2016 Paul Hankins’ Crane Award winner.


“A love letter to the New Yorkers who rallied together, this is also an exploration of the intense bonds that form during a crisis. Detailed and well-researched, it’s sure to make young readers curious about those unforgettable days after the twin towers fell.”     – Kirkus Reviews

“…a touching look at the power of selflessness, memory, and hope in the face of tragedy.”- Booklist

The Memory of Things is highly recommended. It is one of those books I know will never leave me and has left a tiny mark on my heart that I don’t want to ever go away.” – YABooksCentral

“Gae Polisner’s beautiful and poetic The Memory of Things shows us the enduring resilience of human connections. Powerful, frightening, sad, and impossible to look away from, The Memory of Things is ultimately filled with love and hope. This is a truly remarkable, unforgettably moving book.” – Andrew Smith, Printz Honor-winning author of Grasshopper Jungle

“An absolute gem… This one is going to be around for a LONG time.” – Chris Crutcher, Margaret A. Edwards Award-winning author of Deadline and Whale Talk

“We know what happened on 9/11. What remains a mystery and a wonder is how life goes on in the face of such darkness. The Memory of Things is a story about where people find their light, and how it shines through all the places we’ve been broken. Heartfelt, hopeful, this is a story fed by humanity and the enduring human spirit.” – Martha Brockenbrough, author of The Game of Love and Death

“Lyrical, devastating, extraordinary, and full of heart, The Memory of Things reminds us that in our darkest times, there is so much light to be found in the human spirit. It is, of course, a love letter to New York, but more importantly, it is a love letter to human beings, one that masterfully weaves hope through pain, loss, solace, and connection. ” – C. Desir, author of Other Broken Things and Bleed Like Me

“A poetic and hypnotizing portrait of compassion.” – Kate Scelsa, author of Fans of the Impossible Life

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Gae Polisner