Download high-resolution image
Listen to a clip from the audiobook
audio pause button
0:00
0:00

Chaos Theory

Author Nic Stone
Listen to a clip from the audiobook
audio pause button
0:00
0:00
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin delivers a gripping romance about two teens: a certified genius living with a diagnosed mental disorder and a politician's son who is running from his own addiction and grief. Don't miss this gut punch of a novel about mental health, loss, and discovering you are worthy of love.

Scars exist to remind us of what we’ve survived.
 
DETACHED
Since Shelbi enrolled at Windward Academy as a senior and won’t be there very long, she hasn’t bothered making friends. What her classmates don’t know about her can’t be used to hurt her—you know, like it did at her last school.
 
WASTED
Andy Criddle is not okay. At all.
He’s had far too much to drink.
Again. Which is bad.
And things are about to get worse.
 
When Shelbi sees Andy at his lowest, she can relate. So she doesn’t resist reaching out. And there’s no doubt their connection has them both seeing stars . . . but the closer they get, the more the past threatens to pull their universes apart.
 
#1 New York Times bestselling author Nic Stone delivers a tour de force about living with grief, prioritizing mental health, and finding love amid the chaos.
© Nic Stone
Nic Stone was born and raised in a suburb of Atlanta, GA. After graduating from Spelman College, she worked extensively in teen mentoring and lived in Israel for a few years before returning to the US to write full-time. You can find her on her website: nicstone.info. View titles by Nic Stone
April 5.

It’s been almost a year, but I still think about you every day and wish I could go back and do things diffenestg.

Differently*

That’s super sweet, but I think you have the wrong number.

Oh. Is this 6785552535?

Nope. Look again. You’re off a digit.

Oh man . . .

Well maybe its a sign . . .

DO uyou believe in signs, wrong number person?

I’m gonna go now. Sorry I’m not who you thought I was.

Wait, don’t go!

Pleasese

Please*. Sorry. Bub=mble thumbs,

Anyway, I know you don’t know me, but maybe it’s better like this.

Umm . . . what’s better like what?

I mean, texting you was an accident, right?

but like . . .

Maybe your who I was SUPPOSED to text? Because you don’t know me

And I clearkly need somebOdy to talk to.

Maybe the anonymousness is a presngt or something.

Present* Like a gift.

You there?

Heklo?’

Shit. Sorry. I’ve have too mich tp drink Shoula left my phone in my pocket.

Anonymity.

What?

The noun form of anonymous is anonymity.

Oh.

Yeah I think/ I mayhbe knew that

I get good grased in enhlish classes.

English*

Which Im;m clearly struggling to typa.

TYPE*

Jesus.

Uhhh . . . I’m not really sure what to say?

Never been an anonymous emotional support person before. But you are certainly in need of one.

HA! Well win u put it like that . . .

I hope that wasn’t offensive.

Nah, it’s ffine.

It’s not like you’re wrong. That’s baskiallhy what I asked for. Anaonymous emotional support person

Without ACTUALLY asking, by the way.

Just thought I’d point that out.

Omdeed!

Indeed.*

Who were you TRYING to reach by the way? If you don’t mind my asking . . .

My uhh . . . ex.

Ah.

Yeah.

And I take it things didn’t end well?

**takes another swim**

Swig*

First piece of anonymous, unsolicited advice:

Maybe don’t have any more to drink?

Touché anonymousness ananyomity friend

Are you at home by chance?

Nope. Friend’s house. Ragering party Snort.

Don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone type out the word “snort” before.

U know what they say: First time for everything.

Thouagh Im never sure who “they” actually are.

Will you do me a favor?

I mean, you’re still talking to me

WOud ceetainly say I owe you one.

Certainly*

Don’t drive home.

Okay?

You there?

Yeah, I’m here.

Alright. I wonty.

You promise?

Hello?

Where’d you go?

Just fin/isned my drink.

Time for another 1.

[anonymous unsoliciyed advice DENIED!]

Okay.

Do you promise you won’t drive though?

Okay.

I prom,ose I won’y dribe,

Promise* I won’t*

drive.

Thank you.

Glad to hear it.

Okauy

I’m gonna go now.

Thanks for talking to me.

NI/ghty nite.

Educator Guide for Chaos Theory

Classroom-based guides appropriate for schools and colleges provide pre-reading and classroom activities, discussion questions connected to the curriculum, further reading, and resources.

(Please note: the guide displayed here is the most recently uploaded version; while unlikely, any page citation discrepancies between the guide and book is likely due to pagination differences between a book’s different formats.)

Discussion Guide for Chaos Theory

Provides questions, discussion topics, suggested reading lists, introductions and/or author Q&As, which are intended to enhance reading groups’ experiences.

(Please note: the guide displayed here is the most recently uploaded version; while unlikely, any page citation discrepancies between the guide and book is likely due to pagination differences between a book’s different formats.)

  • SELECTION | 2024
    Texas TAYSHAS High School Reading List
"Stone’s talent for writing compassionately about controversial topics that affect the lives of many is on display." —The Washington Post

A beautiful exploration of neurodivergence, grief, and taking risks.” —Booklist

“Readers will appreciate Stone’s honest discussion of the critical issues of mental illness and substance abuse... as well as what it means to support a friend who is in need.” —The Horn Book

“An honest, if stark, examination of how teen relationships can grow and mature through intense trials.” —School Library Journal

“An honest work that highlights the importance of mental illness advocacy amid societal preconceptions and pressures.”Publishers Weekly

“A thoughtful, realistically messy emotional wallop that destigmatizes mental disorders.” Kirkus Reviews

“Offers a discussion starter about the prioritization of recovery and healing.” —The Bulletin



About

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin delivers a gripping romance about two teens: a certified genius living with a diagnosed mental disorder and a politician's son who is running from his own addiction and grief. Don't miss this gut punch of a novel about mental health, loss, and discovering you are worthy of love.

Scars exist to remind us of what we’ve survived.
 
DETACHED
Since Shelbi enrolled at Windward Academy as a senior and won’t be there very long, she hasn’t bothered making friends. What her classmates don’t know about her can’t be used to hurt her—you know, like it did at her last school.
 
WASTED
Andy Criddle is not okay. At all.
He’s had far too much to drink.
Again. Which is bad.
And things are about to get worse.
 
When Shelbi sees Andy at his lowest, she can relate. So she doesn’t resist reaching out. And there’s no doubt their connection has them both seeing stars . . . but the closer they get, the more the past threatens to pull their universes apart.
 
#1 New York Times bestselling author Nic Stone delivers a tour de force about living with grief, prioritizing mental health, and finding love amid the chaos.

Author

© Nic Stone
Nic Stone was born and raised in a suburb of Atlanta, GA. After graduating from Spelman College, she worked extensively in teen mentoring and lived in Israel for a few years before returning to the US to write full-time. You can find her on her website: nicstone.info. View titles by Nic Stone

Excerpt

April 5.

It’s been almost a year, but I still think about you every day and wish I could go back and do things diffenestg.

Differently*

That’s super sweet, but I think you have the wrong number.

Oh. Is this 6785552535?

Nope. Look again. You’re off a digit.

Oh man . . .

Well maybe its a sign . . .

DO uyou believe in signs, wrong number person?

I’m gonna go now. Sorry I’m not who you thought I was.

Wait, don’t go!

Pleasese

Please*. Sorry. Bub=mble thumbs,

Anyway, I know you don’t know me, but maybe it’s better like this.

Umm . . . what’s better like what?

I mean, texting you was an accident, right?

but like . . .

Maybe your who I was SUPPOSED to text? Because you don’t know me

And I clearkly need somebOdy to talk to.

Maybe the anonymousness is a presngt or something.

Present* Like a gift.

You there?

Heklo?’

Shit. Sorry. I’ve have too mich tp drink Shoula left my phone in my pocket.

Anonymity.

What?

The noun form of anonymous is anonymity.

Oh.

Yeah I think/ I mayhbe knew that

I get good grased in enhlish classes.

English*

Which Im;m clearly struggling to typa.

TYPE*

Jesus.

Uhhh . . . I’m not really sure what to say?

Never been an anonymous emotional support person before. But you are certainly in need of one.

HA! Well win u put it like that . . .

I hope that wasn’t offensive.

Nah, it’s ffine.

It’s not like you’re wrong. That’s baskiallhy what I asked for. Anaonymous emotional support person

Without ACTUALLY asking, by the way.

Just thought I’d point that out.

Omdeed!

Indeed.*

Who were you TRYING to reach by the way? If you don’t mind my asking . . .

My uhh . . . ex.

Ah.

Yeah.

And I take it things didn’t end well?

**takes another swim**

Swig*

First piece of anonymous, unsolicited advice:

Maybe don’t have any more to drink?

Touché anonymousness ananyomity friend

Are you at home by chance?

Nope. Friend’s house. Ragering party Snort.

Don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone type out the word “snort” before.

U know what they say: First time for everything.

Thouagh Im never sure who “they” actually are.

Will you do me a favor?

I mean, you’re still talking to me

WOud ceetainly say I owe you one.

Certainly*

Don’t drive home.

Okay?

You there?

Yeah, I’m here.

Alright. I wonty.

You promise?

Hello?

Where’d you go?

Just fin/isned my drink.

Time for another 1.

[anonymous unsoliciyed advice DENIED!]

Okay.

Do you promise you won’t drive though?

Okay.

I prom,ose I won’y dribe,

Promise* I won’t*

drive.

Thank you.

Glad to hear it.

Okauy

I’m gonna go now.

Thanks for talking to me.

NI/ghty nite.

Guides

Educator Guide for Chaos Theory

Classroom-based guides appropriate for schools and colleges provide pre-reading and classroom activities, discussion questions connected to the curriculum, further reading, and resources.

(Please note: the guide displayed here is the most recently uploaded version; while unlikely, any page citation discrepancies between the guide and book is likely due to pagination differences between a book’s different formats.)

Discussion Guide for Chaos Theory

Provides questions, discussion topics, suggested reading lists, introductions and/or author Q&As, which are intended to enhance reading groups’ experiences.

(Please note: the guide displayed here is the most recently uploaded version; while unlikely, any page citation discrepancies between the guide and book is likely due to pagination differences between a book’s different formats.)

Awards

  • SELECTION | 2024
    Texas TAYSHAS High School Reading List

Praise

"Stone’s talent for writing compassionately about controversial topics that affect the lives of many is on display." —The Washington Post

A beautiful exploration of neurodivergence, grief, and taking risks.” —Booklist

“Readers will appreciate Stone’s honest discussion of the critical issues of mental illness and substance abuse... as well as what it means to support a friend who is in need.” —The Horn Book

“An honest, if stark, examination of how teen relationships can grow and mature through intense trials.” —School Library Journal

“An honest work that highlights the importance of mental illness advocacy amid societal preconceptions and pressures.”Publishers Weekly

“A thoughtful, realistically messy emotional wallop that destigmatizes mental disorders.” Kirkus Reviews

“Offers a discussion starter about the prioritization of recovery and healing.” —The Bulletin



2024 Middle and High School Collections

The Penguin Random House Education Middle School and High School Digital Collections feature outstanding fiction and nonfiction from the children’s, adult, DK, and Grupo Editorial divisions, as well as publishers distributed by Penguin Random House. Peruse online or download these valuable resources to discover great books in specific topic areas such as: English Language Arts,

Read more

PRH Education High School Collections

All reading communities should contain protected time for the sake of reading. Independent reading practices emphasize the process of making meaning through reading, not an end product. The school culture (teachers, administration, etc.) should affirm this daily practice time as inherently important instructional time for all readers. (NCTE, 2019)   The Penguin Random House High

Read more

PRH Education Translanguaging Collections

Translanguaging is a communicative practice of bilinguals and multilinguals, that is, it is a practice whereby bilinguals and multilinguals use their entire linguistic repertoire to communicate and make meaning (García, 2009; García, Ibarra Johnson, & Seltzer, 2017)   It is through that lens that we have partnered with teacher educators and bilingual education experts, Drs.

Read more

PRH Education Classroom Libraries

“Books are a students’ passport to entering and actively participating in a global society with the empathy, compassion, and knowledge it takes to become the problem solvers the world needs.” –Laura Robb   Research shows that reading and literacy directly impacts students’ academic success and personal growth. To help promote the importance of daily independent

Read more