Children’s and Young Adult Newsletter 3: October 2011

 Upcoming for Submission

Cora Sandoval is used to the fevers, but this one just might be the worst. In and out of consciousness, and on the brink of death, she sees a man she believes is an angel. When she finally awakens from her haze, weakened and confused, she’s sure there’s something wrong with her eyes–everyone has a colorful halo around them. Everyone except herself, that is. She sees only a brilliant, sparkling silver around herself. Cora is distracted from her strange vision when she falls for Finn, an Irish exchange student who takes interest in her. Their attraction is magnetic, primal, urgent, but her father disapproves, to say the least, and Finn’s mother orders him home to Ireland upon hearing he’s fallen in love. Cora lies her way to Ireland, both to follow Finn but also to look for her mother, missing since she was a young child. Cora finds out more about her power when she meets another like her, but as people around her start to die, she’s not sure who she can trust. She has no clue who, or what, she really is, and can’t know how she plays into a conspiracy spanning centuries–and that just might be what kills her. Scintilla is the first book in Tracy Clark’s lush and exciting new trilogy, full of romance, adventure and metaphysical mystery. Michael Bourret is the agent on this project.

Ten days. That’s all the time Alejandro has to do the impossible-steal a dragon’s golden treasure, the legendary Dragoro. It is the only way he can ransom his older sister Alisa from the corrupt Constable of Toledo. Alejandro would rather run his sword through the fiend than thieve the gold for him, but that’s not an option-at least not yet. While Alisa plots her own escape, Alejandro is joined in his quest by a puckish assistant named Palo, and together they battle desert raiders, a bloodthirsty succubus, and a Cyclops as they press on to the dragon’s mountain lair. Yet when Alejandro discovers that the Dragoro is not what everyone believes, his quest may prove futile, and the chance to save his sister may be lost forever. Boy and girl readers of all ages will thrill to discover the exotic world of Dragoro, where medieval Spain becomes a perfect backdrop for mythical elements drawn from multiple cultures. Like Lord of the Rings crossed with Don Quixote, Steven Cordero‘s debut novel Dragoro seamlessly blends fantasy and history into an epic swashbuckling quest that will have you rooting for Alejandro and Alisa all the way. John Rudolph is the agent on this project.

Ever since her Francesca Schnell’s brother Simon drowned four years ago, she has played second fiddle – to her best friend Lisette, a blossoming blond bombshell; and worse, to her dead brother’s memory. After Francesca sees her father in the arms of the sultry woman who lives across the street while her mother is busy burying herself at the Drowning Foundation, Francesca tails the woman to the local, exclusive country club, where she meets Frankie Sky, a fearless 3-year-old boy with a hole in his heart. Hired by Frankie’s frazzled mother to keep her little boy in check, Francesca gets caught up in a whirlwind that, for the first time since her brother’s death, lifts her literally and metaphorically from the dark she’s known for too long into the sunlit world of summer. But is Frankie just an ordinary boy, or as she’s beginning to suspect, could he be the reincarnation of her dead brother? And if he’s only the former, who will protect Francesca when stepping out of the shadows carries with it the risk of losing everything that matters to her most? Frankie Sky is Gae Polisner‘s stunning follow-up to her debut The Pull of Gravity, a consideration of the darkest moments of tragedy and how sometimes, if we’re lucky, we can learn to recover and rediscover life’s beautiful potential. Jim McCarthy is the agent on this project.

It’s been years since sixteen-year-old Andrew Winston Winters backed out of the suicide pact that took the lives of his older brother and younger sister. Now stuck at a remote Vermont boarding school, Win knows it’s only a matter of time until he turns into a monster like his father, until he, too, becomes a violent, vicious wolf. The last time he got really mad, a kid wound up with a broken jaw. To do the least amount of damage to those around him, he masters the art of shutting people out. But fellow cross-country runner Jordan Herrera starts making some inroads with her boldness and wit, and Win finds himself accompanying her to an all-night party deep in the New England woods. Win wants to believe he’s not dangerous, that he could never hurt someone he cares for. But as he leads Jordan into the wilderness with his father’s blood running through his veins and wolves running through his mind, he knows this isn’t true. Charm and Strange, the debut novel from Stephanie Kuehn, tells Win’s story by alternating between his final summer with his siblings and his current struggles to control his mind, weaving a portrait of grief, madness, and ultimate resilience. Michael Bourret is the agent on this project.

To Kyra, high walls and locked doors are not obstacles, but invitations. She specializes in nighttime raids, using her sharp senses and extraordinary agility to break into Forge’s most well-guarded homes. Then she meets James, the deadly but intriguing head of the Assassin’s Guild. He has a job for Kyra: infiltrate the supposedly impenetrable Palace compound. The pay is good, and the challenge appealing. It’s the perfect job for someone of her talents. But as Kyra establishes herself in the Guild, her “perfect job” starts to unravel. Her assignments become increasingly violent, demanding more than Kyra is willing to give. Then Forge is attacked by Demon Riders-barbarians riding bloodthirsty wildcats -and Kyra suspects the Guild is to blame. When a failed mission lands Kyra in the Palace dungeons, she faces an impossible decision. If she cooperates with the authorities against the Guild, James will kill her family, but if Kyra does nothing, she’ll see Forge overrun by Demon Riders. As the city falls into chaos, Kyra uncovers a secret from her past – a forgotten link to the barbarian invaders that will test Kyra’s loyalties and ultimately challenge the limits of her humanity. Livia Blackburne‘s thrilling YA debut, Midnight Thief, is sure to appeal to fans of Kristin Cashore and Tamora Pierce, and Kyra is a tremendously compelling, deeply conflicted, yet ultimately confident heroine that readers will quickly rally behind. Jim McCarthy is the agent on this project.

Gabriel Adam is used to moving a lot with his minister father, Joseph. But when the mysterious assassin called Septis burns Gabe’s current home in New York City to the ground and leaves Joseph’s assistant murdered in a style not witnessed in centuries, Gabriel’s father reveals the truth of why they are always on the move: Gabriel is one of four Archangels, born human and sent to stop Armageddon. Now, Gabe must set aside dreams of attending NYU to fulfill a prophecy kept secret by the Essenes, a phantom religious sect charged with the pre-biblical traditions of the End of Days. With Septis in pursuit, Gabe and his father travel to the English university town of Durham, hoping that the last Essene can guide them. Joined there by Micah (the Archangel Michael born as a girl), Gabe must learn to have faith in himself and accept his role in the coming war, before facing Septis in a showdown on the ancient Biblical plains of Ethiopia. A sweeping high-YA adventure, The Revelation Saga: Book One by Stephen L. Duncan mixes End of Days with elements of Harry Potter and Raiders of the Lost Ark to create a winning stew of action and teen self-discovery. John Rudolph is the agent on this project.

In the ‘Old World,’ a gifted race known as the Laxens evolved, bringing new creativity and innovation to a primitive world. The group lived together with people for centuries in relative peace, until the year that Eine was born and a mysterious order called the Indigo took over a thriving trade center and began to hunt down all the Laxens. Seventeen years later, Eine – a half-Laxen in hiding – scrapes together a meager existence in the alleys of the once great city of Thela, where the oppressed people are terrorized by giant guards and cut off entirely from the outside world. Stoic Eine barely dreams of a different kind of existence until she stumbles across someone else hiding out: a nameless but charismatic soldier sent as a spy from a foreign city, where politicians and scholars are investigating the Indigo’s power. Together they join Noname’s fatherly companion in an escape under the Thelan walls and travel to the beautiful but aging city of Enahala, where the ruling order must decide how best to prevent the Indigo’s destruction from spreading beyond Thela. In The Indigo Stone, by Simone Snaith, Eine discovers that the world holds wonders of which she’s never dreamed, including technology, legends, romance, and a power she never suspected was hers, one that will be the Indigo’s downfall. Michael Bourret is the agent on this project.

Authors Kara Loo and Jennifer Young have been best friends since high school when they first created the world of Easden during sleepovers turned marathon writing sessions. Since then, they both went to college, found jobs together writing video games for Electronic Arts, and returned to writing about Easden in order to write their fantasy novel, School for Adventurers: Thief. At Eastridge Academy, the realm’s best and brightest learn fighting, magic, and even thieving-in short, all of the skills needed to become a great adventurer. Princesses, however, are supposed to learn sewing, dancing, and courtly manners. They aren’t supposed to learn how to throw a punch or cast fireballs, and they’re certainly not supposed to spy and steal. Princess Averi is about to break all the rules. With her kingdom at war, she’s hardly content to waste her time at fancy banquets, not when attending Eastridge Academy will prepare her to save her people. But life at Eastridge is nothing like life at the palace. Averi’s never had to live with a hostile roommate, fight bullies, or face her biggest misstep of all, falling for the charming heartbreaker Rai Ravin. A deliriously entertaining novel about clever princesses, nefarious princes, snobby healers, cocky warriors, and one very brittle mage roommate, Loo and Young’s action packed debut sets the stage for what promises to be a truly exciting series. Jim McCarthy is the agent on this project.