Ellen Hopkins is an American freelance writer. She is mostly famous for her verse novels, or narrative poetry in which a novel-length narrative is told through the medium of poetry. All of which are about everything crapsack in the teenage world. All of her books are serious Doorstoppers. Debuted with Crank, a novel based on her daughter's experience with crystal meth.
Her work contains examples of
- Abusive Parents: In pretty much every book.
- Department of Child Disservices: Summer of Fallout goes through several foster homes after her grandparents die and was sexually abused in one of them.
- Deus Angst Machina: Impulse, Glass, and Tricks.
- Diabolus Ex Machina: The Downer Ending of Burned has no direct connection to the story's issues (religion-based parental abuse and teenage sex) and comes out of almost nowhere.
- Downer Ending: Burned, Glass, and partially true with Impulse and Tricks.
- Drugs Are Bad: Subverted in Crank and Glass, but comes close to crossing the line a few times.
- Freudian Excuse: All protagonists in all of her stories have one. Always. However, subverted into just being depressing backstories in most cases.
- Missing Mom: Kristina of Crank and Glass is this to the three narrators of Fallout.
- Parental Incest: Identical.
- Prison Rape: Is implied to have happened to Tony from Impulse on several occasions in juvie.
- Rape and Switch: Tony in Impulse.
- Rape as Backstory: Ginger in Tricks, in a particularly twisted way: her mother sold her to several different men over the course of her childhood.
- Rape as Drama: In Crank, Impulse, Identical, Tricks, and Perfect.
- Someone to Remember Him By: Subverted in Burned, as both Ethan and the child die.
- Teen Pregnancy: Kristina in Crank, Pattyn in Burned, Alex in Tricks, Mikayla in Triangles and Tilt. Implied with Autumn in Fallout but never outright confirmed.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: at least one a book.
- Waking Up Elsewhere: Burned, Impulse, Identical and Tricks.