Promise Not To Tell

by Jane Futcher

Meet fifteen-year-old Simon. He feels as if he can’t do anything right. He’s been kicked out of prep school and constantly battles with his parents. Shipping him off to Maine to live with his older cousin is his mother’s idea of a way to turn his life around. Simon doesn’t agree. But that’s before he meets Laura.

She is beautiful.The most beautiful girl Simon has ever seen. And she needs him. Laura is living with a dark secret she can’t tell anyone, except Simon. Simon has to help her. It’s the one thing he knows is right, even if keeping her secret makes everything go terribly wrong.

Chapter One

I’d been home from boarding school onlya few days when it happened. I’d forgotten how badthings are around my parents. My mom gets mad at my dad because his business ventures fail, and my dad yells at her because she doesn’t like sex. When things get too tense, Mom disappears on her horse or flies down to Santa Fe where her best friend lives. Life is calmer for a while, but things deteriorate when Dad’s in charge. He tends to space out on his household duties and forgets Johnny’s soccer practice and Nathan’s doctor appointments.
The atmosphere at home wasn’t exactly light whenthey kicked me out of school. What I did was pretty dumb, since we had only three more days before the term was over. We’d finished exams, and we were waiting around to get our grades and go, to graduation. Click to Read More


“Few young-adult writers have succeeded in capturing the dialogue and internal voice of confused young men with the authenticity and power of Promise Not to Tell, by Jane Futcher…As Simon lurches from childlike needs to adult responsibility, he is by turn sullen and persecuted. He’s rebellious but dependent.”
-Patricia Holt, San Francisco Chronicle, August 1991.

“Some secrets are too dangerous to tell–and too dangerous to keep.” From the Young Adult Library Services Association, which selected Promise Not to Tell as a 1992 Quick Pick for Reluctant YA Readers. Quick Picks are selected because they “have emotional impact and are gripping and memorable.”