Deb Caletti’s The Fortunes of Indigo Skye, published by Simon Pulse in 2008, is a young adult novel.
Indigo Skye is a high-school senior who works in the morning at Carrera’s restaurant in Seattle, Washington. As a waitress, Indigo has come to understand what people are like based on what they order for breakfast. She takes great pleasure in keeping track of her tables and orders. She knows her regular customers personally and refers to them as the Irregulars. These characters are rich and varied in the diner: a factory worker with many tattoos, a Native American poet with a chemical imbalance, and a man who is accused of murdering his wife.
Indigo’s life is quite happy as she has a loving boyfriend (Trevor) and loving relationships with her mother, younger sister (Bex), and her twin brother (Severin). Her life changes when a stranger enters the restaurant after hopping off of his orange Vespa and ordering “just coffee.” Indigo and the Irregulars cannot quite figure him out. Over time, this stranger becomes a semi-regular. On one occasion, Indigo notices a pack of cigarettes in his pocket, and she chides him for killing himself. She and the stranger talk about his life in her customary way. There is nothing unusual about the conversation. The only unusual thing about this encounter is that he has left an envelope for her. The stranger gives her two and half million and Indigo is left with even more questions. Like most people, Indigo has heard that “money changes people.” This is a difficult concept to comprehend at any age, but as a teenager Indigo is left puzzled and determined not to change based on this sudden good fortune.
Indigo uses the money to do what any person might do: she buys things. She purchases a huge flat-screen TV, presents for those she loves, and a beautiful new car. She travels to the wealthy and celebrity-ridden suburbs of Hollywood to seek answers. While there, Indigo learns that achieving wealth is not always the best destination. People with money have problems, too.
Deb Caletti drew attention to her first novel, The Queen of Everything, by developing a likeable heroine and rich supporting characters. The Fortunes of Indigo Skye underscores Caletti's reputation as a writer to watch in the genre of young adult literature.