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ABC New Voices Fall 2013

New Voices highlights books by first-time authors for both kids ages 8-12 and teens. The books are chosen by a committee of independent children's booksellers from around the country. These 10 titles came from more than 70 submissions from a wide range of publishers.

Fall Picks for Ages 8 - 12

After Iris
by Natasha Farrant (Dial Books/Penguin Young Readers Group, 9780803739826, Ages 10-14)

"Bluebell's twin sister Iris died three years ago, and it affected each member of the family in a different way. Blue escapes her sadness behind the lens of her video camera, where she captures the behaviors of her siblings and parents as they learn to cope. This bittersweet novel captures the strength, sadness, and beauty of a family and the love that helps us recover from loss. "
Kaley DeGoursey, RJ Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

The Mysterious Woods of Whistle Root
by Christopher Pennell (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 9780547792637, Ages 9-12)

"When Carly's sleepless nights propel her into an acquaintance with a fiddle-playing mouse, she discovers that she may be the Moon Child, destined to save the creatures of the woods from the terrible Griddlebeast by finding the crank that will ring the bell-shaped leaves of the whistle root trees."
Holly Alder, Blue Marble Books, Fort Thomas, KY

by Katherine Rundell (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 9781442490581, Ages 8-12)

"This is a heart-tugging, beautifully written story of young Sophie's quest to find her mom. Her guardian, Charles 'had kindness where other people had lumps and politeness in his fingertips. If, when reading and walking at the same time, he bumped into a lamppost, he would apologize and check that the lamppost was unhurt.' This wonderful tale is about music and books, acceptance and love, and the need to belong. Are you curious? Read this one slowly."
Christopher Rose, Andover Books, Andover, MA

Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot
by Caroline Carlson (HarperCollins, 9780062194343, Ages 8-12)

"Hilary Westfield has always wished to be like the pirates in Treasure Island, but her parents prefer she attend Miss Pimm's Finishing School for Delicate Ladies. She escapes at her first opportunity and, along with her faithful talking gargoyle, joins a ragtag band of pirates on a hunt for magical treasure. Join Hilary for this funny, rip-roaring adventure on the high seas!"
Amanda Hurley, Inkwood Books, Tampa, FL

What We Found in the Sofa and How It Saved the World
by Henry Clark (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 9780316206662, Ages 8-12)

"A zucchini-colored crayon stuck deep in an abandoned sofa, an eccentric neighbor, a cat named Mucus and a wise double-six domino will all become important in the lives of River, Freak and Fiona as they get caught up in an amazing adventure that will involving traveling to places they never dreamed of visiting and helping to save the world. Hang on, it's going to be a bumpy ride."
Julia Wilson, The Bookworm, Omaha, NE

Fall Picks for Teens

The Brokenhearted
by Amelia Kahaney (HarperTeen/HarperCollins, 9780062230928, Ages 12+)

"After an accident that should have left her dead, prima ballerina Anthem is fitted with a bionic heart. In addition to saving her life, it gives her superhuman strength and speed. Now it's up to Anthem to save the boy she loves&emdash;and herself. All is not as it seems in this thrilling debut, and teens, especially those who are fans of Cinder and Clockwork Angel, will love it!"
Lauren Peugh, Mrs. Nelson's Toy and Book Shop, La Verne, CA

How to Love
by Katie Cotugno (Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins, 9780062216359, Ages 14+)

"Reena's been in love with mercurial Sawyer forever. When he begins to return her affections, they launch into a messy romantic entanglement&emdash;one further complicated by Reena's discovery that she's pregnant just as Sawyer disappears. When he unexpectedly returns two years later, Reena's carefully re-constructed life is upended again. A romantic yet realistic story about second chances and embracing love in all its complicated, not-always-perfect glory."
Lauren Mayer, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

If You Could Be Mine
by Sara Farizan (Algonquin Young Readers, 9781616202514, Ages 14+)

"Sahar is in love with her best friend; she always has been. And she is willing to do anything to be with her. This book is a love story, but it-s also a story about what it's like to be a young gay woman in Iran&emdash;a county where homosexuality is illegal."
Hannah Smith, The Doylestown Bookshop, Doylestown, PA

The Paradox of Vertical Flight
by Emil Ostrovski (Greenwillow Books/HarperCollins, 9780062238528, Ages 12+)

"Brimming with honesty, absurdist adventure, and philosophical pondering, this book is a refreshing trip down the rabbit hole of potentiality, meaning, and existence itself. Jack's journey encapsulates the beautiful juxtaposition of youth and maturity alongside an infinite yearning for understanding in this confusing world. One of the most true-to-heart novels to appear in the genre for some time."
Kyle Warren, The Boulder Book Store, Boulder, CO

The Theory of Everything
by Kari Luna (Philomel Books/Penguin Young Readers Group, 9780399256264, Ages 12+)

"Seeing things other people can't see, having an eccentric physicist father who disappears (literally), and being guided through her first year in a new high school by a shaman panda are not aberrations for Sophie&emdash;they are the norm. With her genius best friend Finny, Sophie sets out to find answers about her Dad's disappearance, String Theory, and how the 'Sophie Effect' changes everything. "
Angie Tally, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC