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Young Adult Fiction Homelessness & Poverty

Take The Stairs

by (author) Karen Krossing

Second Story Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2003
Homelessness & Poverty, General (see also headings under Family), Bullying
Recommended Age
13 to 18
Recommended Grade
8 to 12
Recommended Reading age
13 to 18
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2003
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Jan 2003
    List Price

Classroom Resources

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A collection of intimate stories that reveal the troubled encounters and secret hopes of thirteen teens who live in “The Building” as they struggle to turn obstacles into opportunities and make their way in the larger world.

About the author

Karen Krossing grew up in Thornhill, Ontario, with a family who loved to read. What could she do but read, too? Karen began to create stories when she was eight, and she continued this habit by writing poetry in high school. By then she was hooked on books, so she studied English at university then became a book editor and a technical writer. After Karen had kids, she began writing fiction for children and teens.

Karen uses writing to understand the world around her. In Take The Stairs, which was nominated for the Ontario Library Association White Pine Award, she writes about turning adversity into opportunity through the troubled lives of inner-city teens. In Pure, her latest novel, she explores sticky ethical questions about genetic engineering that today's teens will have to face in their lifetimes.

Karen is a writing instructor at Centennial College and she teaches an after-school writing program for kids and teens through Pegasus Studios in Toronto. She led workshops at the 2003 Canadian Children's Book Camp in Toronto and was on tour with TD Canadian Children's Book Week in 2005. Karen regularly conducts writing workshops and book talks at Canadian schools.

For a detailed interview with Karen, go to For contact information, please visit

Karen Krossing's profile page


  • Short-listed, Ontario Library Association - White Pine Award

Editorial Reviews

Many readers will identify with the various emotions and situations that are depicted.


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