To Daya Wijesinghe, a bruise is a mixture of comfort and control. Since her parents died in an accident she survived, bruises have become a way to keep her pain on the surface of her skin so she doesn't need to deal with the ache deep in her heart.
So when chance and circumstances bring her to a roller derby bout, Daya is hooked. Yes, the rules are confusing and the sport seems to require the kind of teamwork and human interaction Daya generally avoids. But the opportunities to bruise are countless, and Daya realizes that if she's going to keep her emotional pain at bay, she'll need all the opportunities she can get.
The deeper Daya immerses herself into the world of roller derby, though, the more she realizes it's not the simple physical pain-fest she was hoping for. Her rough-and-tumble teammates and their fans push her limits in way. (From Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
Tanya Boteju is an author and educator based in Vancouver. Her debut YA novel, Kings, Queens and In-Betweens, followed a high school student named Nima and explored themes of gender identity and belonging.
- Tanya Boteju's YA novel Bruised explores the bold and beautiful world of roller derby
- 28 Canadian YA books to check out in spring 2021
- 35 Canadian books to check out in summer 2021
- 14 Canadian books for kids and young adults to read to get into the Olympic spirit
"The inspiration for the book was me sitting down and trying to figure out what to write next. I was grounding my writing in communities that I find engaging, interesting, exciting, colourful.
I've always been impressed with roller derby. When I was searching for a community that I was curious and wanted to learn more about, that popped into my brain.
"I've always been impressed with roller derby. When I was searching for a community that I was curious and wanted to learn more about, that popped into my brain. That became the impetus behind the story, because then I started thinking about who would be attracted to this brutal sport, and why."
Interviews with Tanya Boteju
Other books by Tanya Boteju