“Where did you get the idea for your book?”

Dominion, Science Fiction, Sci-fi, Strong female character, fantasy, spirits

The following post is written by Shane Arbuthnott, author of Dominion.   “Where did you get the idea for your book?” This seems to be a common question for authors. My debut novel, Dominion, only came out at the end of February, but I’ve already heard it a dozen times. I usually rattle off something about themes and worldbuilding. But my answer is always incomplete, because a book takes more than one idea. So I thought maybe I might try to answer that question properly here. This might take a while. For most of my […]






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Author Feature: Robin Stevenson

Blood on the Beach by Robin Stevenson and Sarah N. Harvey

In Blood on the Beach, eight teens are dropped off on a remote west-coast island for a week-long treatment program called INTRO (Into Nature to Renew Ourselves). The story is told by two of them: Alice, whose police-officer mother believes Alice might have a substance-abuse problem, and Caleb, who assaulted his abusive stepfather. They are joined by six other miscreants and three staff: a psychologist, a social worker and an ex-cop. On the first night, one of the girls disappears from her cabin. There is a panicked search of the island, but she is nowhere […]






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Lucy’s Granola Bars

Lucy's granola bars

As the weather gets warmer, it’s time for outdoor play and sports–Lucy is outside playing soccer, her favorite summer sport! The Lucy Tries Sports series encourages young readers to try new things, get outside and be active. In Lucy Tries Soccer, Lucy and her friends meet at the soccer field for their first game of three-on-three! Thanks to Coach Nick, Team Blue learns some new skills as they prepare to face Team Red. Lucy discovers how much fun it is to play on a team and learns why soccer is the world’s most popular game. […]






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Author Feature: Alison Hughes

Basketball, Shakespeare, sports, couch, announcer, middle grade novel

When the Gladiators basketball team’s nasty coach finally gets turfed midseason, things couldn’t possibly get worse. The team hasn’t won a game yet, and morale is at rock bottom. Sameer, who announces the games and keeps score, and Vijay, the team mascot, have their hands full keeping the team’s spirits up. When they get promoted to assistant coach and manager, can they help a small, unathletic, Shakespeare-quoting drama teacher coach the team to victory, or at least to dignity? Or will the courtside drama eclipse even the school play? What image/scene/character did you start Kings […]






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5 books for Earth Day!

Footprints, Orca Footprints, Earth Day, Smart Reading, Environmentalism, Make a differece, what matters, nonfiction, fiction, picture book

Happy Earth Day, readers! Every little thing matters (as we learn in the playful picture book featured below). So let’s get into the green, planet-saving mode with some of our favorite earth-related books!   1. What Matters by Alison Hughes and Illustrated by Holly Hatam What happens when one small boy picks up one small piece of litter? He doesn’t know it, but his tiny act has big consequences. From the miniscule to the universal, What Matters sensitively explores nature’s connections and traces the ripple effects of one child’s good deed to show how we […]






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A Leap of Faith

Author, author reading, book launch, performing, performance

The following post is written by Trudee Romanek, author of Raising the Stakes. Ever thought about performing improv? Standing in front of an eager crowd with no script, no back-up music—nothing but your wits? I’ve had heart-thumping nightmares that were less stress-inducing. I love watching improv but figured I could never perform it. Coming up with stuff off the top of your head is the opposite of what I do as a fiction writer. See, I love control. I research and plan endlessly, creating a timeframe, an outline, character sketches, and so on. And once […]






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