Good News from the Online Author Visits Team!

Good News from the Online Author Visits Team!

Martha Brockenbrough’s novel, THE GAME OF LOVE AND DEATH, is up for an Audie Award in the YA category. These are awards given to the best audio recording. Susan Hanfield reads the book, and the audio version includes three songs Martha co-wrote with jazz singer Victoria Contreras.

And here’s the cover of her Sept. 5 release, a young adult biography of Alexander Hamilton.
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The first two books in Dori Hillestad Butler‘s new KING & KAYLA easy reader series launch on March 1. KING & KAYLA is the prequel her Edgar award winning BUDDY FILES series. Book 1, THE CASE OF THE MISSING DOG TREATS is a Junior Library Guild selection for March. Kirkus says, “Readers will connect with this charmingly misunderstood pup (along with his exasperated howls, excited tail wagging, and sheepish grins).”

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The revised digital version of David Patneaude’s EPITAPH ROAD is now available from Amazon. Kirkus says, “Will hook readers of The Hunger Games trilogy.”

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Laurie Ann Thompson was excited to receive the Advanced Reader Copies for her upcoming book, TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT’S ALIVE (co-authored with the fabulous Ammi-Joan Paquette). It’s equal parts thrilling and nerve-wracking to think that book buyers and reviewers across the country will soon be evaluating your book!

Her book EMMANUEL’S DREAM showed up recently on some very nice lists, including 10 Great Picture Books on Heroism (from Waking Brain Cells), 35 Picture Books for Young Activists (from All the Wonders), and Making an Impact: 25 Mighty Girl Books About Charity and Community Service (from A Mighty Girl). She also learned that it is the “One School, One Book” selection that all students, grades K-5, will be reading in March at the Brooks Global Studies Extended-Year Magnet School in North Carolina!

To top it off, she’s had several fantastic in-person school visits in the last month, which are always energizing and inspiring!

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For kids who love learning about natural disasters, Trudi Trueit had two new titles debut recently, DETECTING AVALANCHES and DETECTING VOLCANIC ERUPTIONS. Each book features simple text that explains how scientists use technology to predict these catastrophic events. The books include “How It Works” spreads, fun facts, sidebars, a disaster preparedness checklist and more! For readers ages 7 and up. Trudi is also OAV’s February Author of the Month, and she’s GIVING AWAY an advanced copy (ARC) of her upcoming fiction book, MY TOP SECRET DARES & DON’TS. Click HERE to enter the contest!

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Dori Jones Yangftb-cover-image is delighted to reveal the cover for her new middle-grade novel, THE FORBIDDEN TEMPTATION OF BASEBALL. It’s a lively and nuanced story about two brothers sent to America by the Emperor of China in 1875, as part of a group of 120 boys who were to live with American families, learn English, study technology, and return home to modernize China. Readers will experience culture clash and some of the difficulties immigrant children have in adapting to life in the United States. For readers aged 10 to 14, the book will come out August 15, 2017, with SparkPress.

 

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Trudi Trueit, Author of the Month: For All the Champions

My mom was my champion. She believed in me long before I believed in myself. For a chubby, near-sighted, shy kid, her faith became my heartbeat. My mom gave me the precious gems of wisdom every child should possess: find your passion, follow your gut, never away give your power, persevere through hard times, pick yourself up when the world kicks you down. Plus, she was my best friend. I could tell her my secrets and know they would be safe.

Three years ago, when my mom died, my spirit turned gray. I tried telling myself all the things we say when a loved one dies: she wouldn’t want me to wallow, take comfort in the memories, grieve at my own pace. Still, I had trouble tapping into my creative core. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to write, but I couldn’t figure out what to say. I was a jumble of emotions. Which ones should I pick? And how should I express them? Was there a right way? A way that would help me heal? One day, while looking at a picture of Mom and me I kept on my desk, I thought, ‘I feel like you took a piece of me when you left.’ And the answer came back, ‘Maybe so, but I also left a piece of myself behind.’

Me. I was, of course, that piece.

I knew I needed to write. Anything. Everything. Just write. So I did. I let my feelings of anger, sadness, frustration, and loss pour out onto the page, even if the things that came out made no sense, especially if they made no sense. I wrote short poems or jotted down memories of us; sometimes, the best I could do was scribble a sentence or two about how I was feeling that day. It took time but ever-so-slowly, the color came back into my soul. I am a firm believer that writing is cathartic. If you are willing to be honest and write about the messiness, it can save you.

Some of my work during that difficult time later became the seeds for a middle grade novel. I found myself writing a story about a 12-year-old girl named Kestrel (my mom loved birds) whose family travels to Canada after the death of her grandfather to help her grandmother save the family business. For many children, like Kestrel, the loss of a granddaresdontsssparent will be the first time they come face to face with death. Kestrel wants to be there for Grandma Lark (another bird) but isn’t sure how. Is there a right way? A way to help her grandmother heal? Or will she only make things worse? (Sound familiar?) The two begin a journey to find the answers together and, in the process, forge a powerful and lasting bond. MY TOP SECRET DARES AND DONT’S will be released next month from Aladdin MIX.

A few years before my mother passed, she told me she had her first inkling I would be a professional writer when I was seven years old. This surprised me, because we’d had many conversations about my career over the years. “You never said anything to me about it,” I said. “No,” she said. “It was your path to choose, your path to walk.” True enough. She had always supported me, but never steered me. She’d taught me to make my own choices then stepped back and let me do just that – another one of her gems.

Each day, as I sit down to write, I think how blessed I was to have a champion like her. We all need them in our lives. If I can be that for even one young writer than I will have fulfilled my artistic purpose. I think Mom would agree.

* * * GIVEAWAY * * *

The giveaway of an Advanced Reviewer Copy (ARC) of MY TOP SECRET DARES & DON’Ts is now over!  Congrats to our winner: LYNN A.

truditrueit2016Trudi Trueit is an award-winning author of more than 100 fiction and nonfiction books for children. She enjoys giving online presentations and leading writing workshops for elementary through middle school students. Click HERE to find out how you can bring her into your classroom via Skype or Google Hangouts. To read more about Trudi and her books, visit her website at www.truditrueit.com.

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