Ivy’s seemingly perfect, master-of-social-causes boyfriend breaks it off in the school hallway before their final exam. So much for love. It turns out Jeremy wants to get good and laid by someone new over summer vacation, before they both head off to different universities in the fall. At her grandmother’s seventy-fifth birthday party, Ivy is in no mood to socialize. In fact, she’s downright delicate. Unfortunately, sixteen-year-old Lucan’s peanut allergy reaction happens right in front of her eyes. As Ivy keeps him company the two realize they’re second cousins who haven’t seen each other in six years due to a mysterious family feud.

The old drama is the last thing on Lucan’s mind. He has more immediate problems, like his mom’s noisy playtime activities with her brash younger boyfriend. On top of that, Lucan’s a constant witness to his best friend’s toxic relationship, which he begins to suspect has become abusive.

As the weeks pass, Lucan and Ivy’s summer seems more like a minefield of disastrous events — but at least they have their developing friendship with each other to count on. Or is that what’s really going on?

✮ Free teachers' guide for DELICATE available at publisher DCB's website: TEACHERS' GUIDE
Cormorant (DCB), © 2015
ISBN-10: 1770864520
ISBN-13: 978-1770864528
Reading level: Young Adult and up


C.K. Kelly Martin’s YA writing is the kind you want to give the teens in your life. It’s written for them, not adult crossover readers, and it meets teens where they live. Her latest novel, told in two characters’ alternating voices, is a flinchingly accurate look at the confusion and conviction of adolescence.
Martin fills this novel with relevant, delicate issues common among teens today. Each character is presented as a well-rounded human, reflecting the good, bad, and ugly found in human nature. This fascinating work explores dating violence and parental issues, while also accurately addressing teen sex lives in a way that is realistic and doesn't come across as preachy. Readers will connect with the characters through this refreshing look at contemporary issues.
— School Library Journal
. . . an empowering, sensitive example of dealing with abusive relationships...Delicate contains teenage angst, sex, betrayal and suspense, resulting in an intense read for those who love drama.
National Reading Campaign
Her other books have always fascinated me by her analysis of the complexity of the human condition and Delicate takes that one step further by examining both the obvious and the unseen and showing the immensity of both in affecting our lives and the way we see ourselves...C. K. Kelly Martin exposes the ways we hurt each other, sometimes deliberately, some accidentally, and some through negligence, and provides an upfront perspective on dealing.
Authentic portrayals of teen sexuality are few and far between...But Ontario author C.K. Kelly Martin unabashedly portrays the hormonal realities of being 16 and 17 in this dual narrative of second cousins Ivy and Lucan. Martin does not shy away from the messier realities of young love, including a laudably prolonged and uncomfortable description of an STI . . .
The Globe and Mail
Martin does an excellent job illustrating how a friendship can blossom and grow between two people over a length of time. From peanut allergies to sexually transmitted diseases, they face everything together and it was refreshing to see such a solid friendship represented in young adult literature.
Women Write About Comics
Dating violence and sexually transmitted infection are just two of the many issues experienced by the group of teens...and they're examined with nuance. Thoughtful and honest.


  Paperback copies available from Mabel's Fables | McNally Robinson | Chapters.Indigo | | | | Barnes and Noble | Fishpond | Powell's | Angus & Robertson | | Amazon BR | Amazon AU | |

  Kindle copies available at Amazon US and Amazon CA

  ePubs available from Apple | Kobo | Google Play Books