March 1, 2016 Debuts - Part Three
In the coastal village of Maiden Rock, Maine, Quinnie Boyd's teacher has disappeared. Quinnie thinks it's a kidnapping case, but her mom, the town sheriff, just thinks the teacher has left town. Still, Quinnie's going to follow her instincts that something's wrong.
Her investigation takes her through a damp and smelly marsh, a lobster pound, and more of Maine's messiest places. She even gets help from her glamorous new neighbor, Mariella. As the girls hunt for clues around Maiden Rock, they encounter a cast of unlikely characters. And if Quinnie's hunch is right, the search may lead them right into danger . . .
This hilarious and page-turning debut is the perfect whodunit story for middle school sleuths.
"Surrisi has created a tale that captures readers’ attention within the first few pages and keeps up the pace through the last chapter. The characters are relatable, refreshingly human, and very funny. Quinnie acts just like a 13-year-old girl would; she is an adult, a child, wise, and very foolish all at the same time."
-- School Library Journal
"Much of the book's humor derives from the quirky, colorful Maiden Rockers, particularly the two elderly nuns who drive too fast, can't figure out recycling, live in the convent with hordes of cats, and have a puzzling need for bat guano... Surrisi's debut novel is a delightful cozy mystery, snugly mixing intrigue and humor, with an unpredictable and satisfying resolution."
-- Kirkus reviews
When fragile, sixteen-year-old Hope Walton loses her mom to an earthquake overseas, her secluded world crumbles. Agreeing to spend the summer in Scotland, Hope discovers that her mother was more than a brilliant academic, but also a member of a secret society of time travelers. And she's alive, though currently trapped in the twelfth century, during the age of Eleanor of Aquitaine. Hope has seventy-two hours to rescue her mother and get back to their own time. Passing through the Dim, Hope enters a brutal medieval world of political intrigue, danger, and violence. A place where any serious interference could alter the very course of history. And when she meets a boy whose face is impossibly familiar, she must decide between her mission and her heart—both of which could leave Hope trapped in the past forever.
Addictive, romantic, and rich with historical detail, Into the Dim is an Outlander for teens.
"Debut author Taylor adeptly blends the fantastical and the historical as she sends her reluctant heroine back to the age of Eleanor of Aquitaine in order to save her mother. Taylor’s writing is bright with detail and her plot dense with action as Hope learns to be brave and resourceful when circumstances turn dire."
-- Publishers Weekly
Life is confusing for Mateo Martinez. He and Johnny Ramirez don't hang out anymore, even though they used to be best friends. He and his new friend Ashwin try to act like brave, old-time knights, but it only gets them in trouble. And last night, two skunks stole Mateo's old trike.
Wait—two skunks stole his trike?
Mateo is too big for that rusty kid toy. He has a cool, shiny new bike anyway. But Mateo also has a neighborhood to protect. And he's about to begin a big, stinky quest to catch the thieves in the middle of the night!
As Mateo protects his neighborhood, he also learns a few things about growing up and letting go.
"Yardi, in her first novel, delivers an entertaining story of sibling loyalty, friendship struggles, and the sometimes vexing passage into adolescence."
"Utilizing a gentle sense of humor and incisive insight, the author negotiates Mateo’s developing identity with aplomb, especially his Mexican-American heritage: “Trying to speak Spanish makes me feel like I’m doing it wrong, and I hate that.” Mateo finds no easy answers, and that’s OK. A magnificent novel that defines what it is to be an older brother, a friend, and, yes, even a knight."