“A nuanced and tenderly pitched story.” –Elizabeth Acevedo, National Book Award winner and New York Times bestselling author
“Ismée Williams has created an engaging urban romance that tackles difficult subjects such as mental health and racism, while celebrating poetry, dance, baseball, and the complexities of Latino families.” –Margarita Engle, Newbery Honor-winning author of The Surrender Tree
Alex is a baseball player. A great one. His papi is pushing him to go pro, but Alex maybe wants to be a poet. Not that Papi would understand or allow that.
Isa is a dancer. She'd love to go pro, if only her Havana-born mom weren't dead set against it...just like she's dead set against her daughter falling for a Latino. And Isa's privileged private-school life—with her dad losing his job and her older brother struggling with mental illness—is falling apart. Not that she'd ever tell that to Alex.
Fate—and the New York City subway—bring Alex and Isa together. Is it enough to keep them together when they need each other most?
About the Author
Ismée Williams is a pediatric cardiologist by day and an accomplished author by night. Her first book with Abrams, Water in May, was released in 2017 to critical acclaim. She lives in New York City.
"We root for these young lovers — the self-conscious poet with the killer fastball and the shy ballerina who would take a bullet for those she loves — as they learn to let their guards down and be more honest with each other, and with themselves. When their story rolls into its final stop we’re sad the ride is over but delighted we caught this train.” — The New York Times Book Review
"From beginning to end, told in the course of about a year, this story explores overcoming appearances and prejudices and the ways loving and taking care of yourself and others is a choice as well as a responsibility. . . It's a captivating, classic story about two people who "shouldn't" be together, and readers will be cheering them on until its satisfying conclusion." — Booklist
"Serious romantics will enjoy this love story set against racism, classism, colorism, and mental health stigma." — School Library Journal
"YA readers will love This Train is Being Held. . .Touching on racial inequalities and prejudices to mental disorders and a negative family life, this book is extremely up-to-date with today’s society." — VOYA Magazine