Stronger Than You Know

After police intervention, fifteen-year-old Joy has finally escaped the trailer where she once lived with her mother and survived years of confinement and abuse. Now living with her aunt, uncle, and cousins in a comfortable house, she’s sure she’ll never belong. Wracked by panic attacks, afraid to talk to anyone at her new school, Joy’s got a whole list of reasons why she’s crazy. With immense courage, Joy finds friends and grows closer to her new family. But just when hope is taking hold, she learns she must testify in her mother’s trial. Can she face her old life without losing her way in the new one? Will she ever truly belong in a world that seems too normal to be real?

  • 256 Pages
  • 5.5" x 8.25"
  • 9780807531556
  • September 2014

Buy from Albert Whitman

  • 272 Pages
  • 5.5" x 8.25"
  • 9780807531587
  • August 2015

Buy from Albert Whitman

  • 9780807531563
  • May 2015

Other Places to Buy


  • While the subject matter is tough, this realistic title will draw teens in with its believable characters, including the well-written portrayal of the adult protagonists.

    - School Library Journal

  • Perry’s descriptions of Joy’s intense turmoil are vivid…a moving survival story.

    - Booklist

  • Perry manages to convey Joy’s gradual growth without resorting to pamphlet-speak, but moreover she offers a portrait, rare in YA, of the way compassionate, functional families work and the good effects they can produce.

    - The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

  • This is moving, horrifying and at times difficult to read, but the timeliness of the story and hopes for Joy to be whole, keep the reader engaged.

    - Library Media Connection

  • Perry deftly avoids the probelm-novel label thanks to complex characters and a well-structured plot. Joy’s story is very affecting, and her voice is suitably self-effacing without being ostentatious; most readers will be engrossed.

    - Kirkus Reviews

Awards & Accolades

  • 2014 Finalist Association for Mormon Letters Award - Young Adult General Novel category

    Common Core

    RL.9-10.1,2,3,4,5,10 SL.9-10.1,1a,1b,1c W.9-10.4,5,6,7,8,9,9a,10