Good News from the Online Author Visits Team!

Good News from the Online Author Visits Team!


Trudi Trueit has a new book out for tween readers, MY TOP SECRET DARES & DON’TS (Simon & Schuster/Aladdin MIX). It’s the story of 12-year-old Kestrel, who travels to Whistler, BC to help her grandmother run the family ski lodge. However, Kestrel soon realizes the business is in dire trouble and it’s up to her to save it. SIGNED hard cover and paperback copies of the book are available through University Books in Mill Creek, WA. To order yours, call (425)385-3530.

Also, Trudi has inked a deal with National Geographic for a new middle grade fiction series, called EXPLORER ACADEMY. The books will focus on a twelve-year-old boy, who joins an elite group of young explorers. They travel the world, uncovering artifacts, protecting endangered species, and making new discoveries. Naturally, danger, intrigue, and more than a few family secrets give him plenty to tangle with in this illustrated action series with a dash of science fiction. The series will debut in 2018. Watch for more details or sign up for Trudi’s e-newelstter at

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twotruthsandalie-hc-convertedLaurie Ann Thompson‘s upcoming book, TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT’S ALIVE! (co-authored with Ammi-Joan Paquette) was chosen by the Junior Library Guild as a Fall 2017 selection for the Elementary Nonfiction category (for grades 2-6). It also received its first professional review, from Kirkus Reviews, which called it, in part, “An engaging, entertaining compendium that will inform and confound.”
And, there was good news for EMMANUEL’S DREAM, too. First, it was selected to the 2017 IBBY Outstanding Books for Young People with Disabilities. Second, Brooks Global Studies elementary school in North Carolina chose EMMANUEL’S DREAM as their all-school read during the month of March, which included Skype visits with Thompson for every grade level and a surprise in-person visit from Emmanuel! You can read more about their event, and even see a video, here.
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Dana Sullivan is at work on revisions to his sketches for MY RED VELVET CAPE and apologizes to the legions of readers for keeping them breathlessly awaiting news about whether this book would be published or not. YES! It’s to be published Spring 2018 and the art is due in August. But first he’s got to get the sketches revised and approved. A book is really a team effort, with everybody pushing to make the book the best it can be. The team includes an art director and mine is helping me with pacing to get the most emotional bang for your book. (Ha! He says he’s gonna keep that one.) The revisions are not huge, just tweaks to make things clearer, especially to young readers. For instance, the art director asked that these two spreads
be combined into one to keep the flow moving along.
In this image he was asked to remove the teacher, because at this age, kids really do NOT want a teacher to help them get into the bathroom (even if they might need it).
Dana really loves that teacher, so he’s moved her to another page. Her name is Vanessa (“Vern”) Aquilaria, by the way.
Now it’s back to work on revisions for Dana!
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Here’s a covers reveal for Lisa L. Owens‘s titles in Lerner’s new Primary Source Explorers series. Both books will come out in August 2017.

LLO_PSE covers

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Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams are celebrating two new releases this month. NYX THE MYSTERIOUS (Book 22 in the GODDESS GIRLS series for ages 8 – 12), and HERNES AND THE HORSE WITH WINGS (Book 13 in the HEROES IN TRAINING, created by Joan and Suzanne and written by Tracey West for ages 6 – 9.)

In NYX THE MYSTERIOUS, Nyx, the bringer of night in Greek mythology hopes to convince the students and staff at Mount Olympus Academy of the importance of her job. But no one seems appreciate what she does until, quite by accident, they experience what it’s like to have unending day.

In HERMES AND THE HORSE WITH WINGS, Zeus and his fellow Olympians are on their most important quest ever; to find the winged horse that flew away with Zeus’s beloved magical thunderbolt.
Goddess Girls Nyx the Mysterious Joan Holub Suzanne Williams (1)
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Dori Hillestad Butler‘s brand new KING & KAYLA series has received nice reviews from Booklist (“This title is a delightful series start that will have kids returning to read more about Kayla and King. It’s also a great introduction to mysteries, gathering facts, and analytical thinking for an unusually young set.”), Kirkus (“Dog lovers will fall hard for this series.”), Hornbook (“Repetition both within and between books helps boost confidence in beginning readers, as do the generous, plot-reinforcing illustrations…Each book allows plenty of room for predictions and provides a glimpse into the great payoff reading can deliver.”) and YA and Kids Books Central (“It’s great to see books with diverse characters, and King is a very appealing dog, with his love of all things food and his devotion to Kayla.”). Both books were selected as Junior Library Guild selections this spring and both books will appear in the May Scholastic book orders.

Book 3, KING & KAYLA AND THE CASE OF THE MYSTERIOUS MOUSE will be out in September and it was also chosen as a Junior Library Guild selection for Fall 2017. Here’s a cover reveal:

king and kayla3 cover

In other news, Haunted Library #1 is now available in Czech and books #2 and #3 are now available in Japanese:


Joan Holub, Author of the Month: How a Night Owl Gets Day Things Done

Do you get up early, feeling immediately creative?

If so, I’ve always wanted to be like you. Alas, I’m a night owl. To me, the evening hours feel all cozy and less interruptible by outside forces. My energy peaks and my brain sparks with creativity. I get a lot done…

Coming in 2017:
Tool School  Scholastic picture book
Vampoodle  Random House early reader

But I can’t live out of step with most of the world. I have to get started earlier than comes naturally. So I begin my day working on something that doesn’t require me to be at peak creativity. Research. Emails. Designing a book postcard.

Then I ease into writing–the kind that doesn’t require me to dig deep. Morning is not the time to start a new story or make critical creative decisions on one I’ve begun. Instead, I might do revisions on a first draft Goddess Girls series manuscript—not the final-stage fine-tuning kind. No, the easy kind, like perusing Google images to get a consensus on a new mythology character’s hair color, or moving hunks of story around for better logic. Organizing facts is easy and fun for me in the mornings–probably one reason I write nonfiction in addition to fiction.

I’ve been thinking about what it is to be a night owl a lot lately because Nyx is a night owl. She’s the star of Nyx the Mysterious, the newest book (#22) in the Goddess Girls middle grade series I co-author with the amazing Suzanne Williams. Nyx is the bringer of night in Greek mythology. An important job. Yet no one at Mount Olympus Academy seems to get that. (I do, Nyx! Honestly, would they really want it to be day all the time?) Evening and night have beneficial qualities. Darkness serves us as a time to dream, both creatively and in a rejuvenative sense.

For us naturally-night-owl authors, the point is to find things we can do in the early part of our day that will act as bridges to what we hope to accomplish every afternoon or evening—create something new and surprising on the page.

Whether you’re a morning person or a night owl like Nyx and me, it’s really all about getting started. About finding a way to accomplish your goals, whatever they may be!

* * * GIVEAWAY * * *
Nyx the Mysterious
Book birthday: April 4, 2017
Goddess Girls series
Middle grade, ages 8-12
Simon & Schuster / Aladdin
Giving away two copies signed by Joan Holub & Suzanne Williams.
Please post a comment to enter (with contact so winners can be notified win).

Joan Holub is the New York Times bestselling author of Mighty Dads, illustrated by James Dean. She is the author and/or illustrator of about 150 books for children. To read more about Joan and her books, visit: