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Born under a blood moon, twin sister travellers, Kizzy - a brave, voluptuous bear dancer - and Lil - slight in frame and blessed with a beautiful voice – are captured after their camp is ransacked on the eve of their divining, the coming-of-age rite that would have seen them learn their fates. With many kinsfolk slain, the twins are enslaved by Boyar Valcar and set to work in the castle kitchens, where rumours about the notorious Dragon loom large over all the female slaves. Separated when Kizzy is snatched away, Lil escapes to search for her sister with Mira, a fellow slave. As they race against time to save Kizzy, encountering the terrifying strigoi (undead) along the way, powerful desires are awakened, which adds extra conflict as the story winds to its transfixing climax. Driven by the sisters’ passion and revenge, loyalty and love, and powerful on the persecution of travellers, this is a dazzling female-focused reimagining of vampire legends, with the writing infused with a lyrical earthiness throughout.
Christina is sent to stay with her terrifying uncle and her cousins at Flambards, a rambling house in the country where riding and hunting are the most prized activities. Everything about the countryside - and her relatives - is new to Christina but she soon finds she loves riding. And, in different ways, she begins to love her cousins. The first volume in a hugely romantic trilogy.
Soar into space with this glorious love story of alien folk, from the creators of The Gruffalo and Stick Man. The Smeds (who are red) never mix with the Smoos (who are blue). So when a young Smed and Smoo fall in love, their families strongly disapprove. But peace is restored and love conquers all in this happiest of love stories. There's even a gorgeous purple baby to celebrate! With fabulous rhymes and breathtaking illustrations, this book is literally out of this world!
CLICK HERE TO NOMINATE AND VOTE FOR YOUR QUEEN OF TEEN! Inspirational and entertaining stories by top teen authors in aid of Kids Company that have been selected to be in the final shortlist of the Queen of Teen Award. This story collection provides a perfect opportunity to discover a new author’s writing. Featuring stories by Meg Cabot, Cathy Cassidy, Lisa Clark, Cathy Hopkins, Sarra Manning, Karen McCombie, Joanna Nadin, Louise Rennison and Jacqueline Wilson, each one focuses on the realities of being a teenager and aining independence.
A smart, funny and fast-paced read which addresses a near-universal teen experience. Can Sadie overcome her unrequited crush for her best friend, for good having discovered he's fallen for another girl? Heartbroken, Sadie realises she's finally had enough and that it's time for a total Garrett detox. Aided by a barista job, an eclectic crew of new friends (including hunky chef Josh) and a customized self-help guide, Sadie embarks on a summer of personal reinvention full of laughter, meltdowns...and a double shot of love. With her trademark wit and wisdom Abby McDonald serves up an hilarious new novel.
July 2017 Debut of the Month | In a Nutshell: Loss, love, and the struggle to survive the most savage of storms A compelling coming-of-age story, an exploration of loss, and a gripping, multi-layered mystery, this had me hooked from the opening lines, and will surely be loved by fans of Wonder, and Louis Sachar. Ethan Truitt (twelve years and four months old) has moved from his beloved Boston to Palm Knot, a “drooping and faded” backwater. His parents say it's because Grandpa Ike needs their help, but Ethan knows they’re lying. He knows they moved “because of what I did to Kacey”, his best friend. Being the new kid in class is hard for anyone, but especially so for Ethan, who doesn’t think he deserves friends, not after the accident he blames himself for. Then Coralee blasts into his life. She’s a whirlwind of a girl, a teller of big tales, a keeper of big secrets. Several mysteries are smoothly interwoven with the path of their relationship, and their personal struggles. What’s with the jewels they find in abandoned Blackwood House? Why does Kacey’s dad keep calling Ethan’s parents? And why won’t Grandpa Ike let anyone in his room? Poignant, tender, and budding with shoots of hope, this is a mighty fine debut about guilt, grief, friendship and healing. ~ Joanne Owen
February 2017 Book of the Month | In a Nutshell: Supernatural Regency Extravaganza | This second book in the lavishly entertaining Lady Helen trilogy - think Jane Austen meets contemporary supernatural sass – more than matches the dark drama of its impressive predecessor. Having decided to join the charismatic Lord Carlston in the Dark Days Club as a Reclaimer, Lady Helen is undergoing training in Brighton during the summer season. But, before she’s been fully instructed, Carlston feels certain that a Grand Deceiver has arrived on English soil, and defence against Grand Deceivers cannot wait for apprenticeships to be completed… But that’s not all. Lady Helen must also manage the somewhat problematic matter of the Home Office having their own agenda for her, along with some rather taxing matters of the heart. This glorious sequel has it all for fans of fantasy and historical fiction - paranormal clashes, political intrigue, smoldering romance, a handsomely headstrong heroine, and bejeweled historical detail. The writing fizzes with passion and panache throughout, much like Lady Helen herself. ~ Joanne Owen The Lady Helen trilogy is set in Regency England; Alison Goodman says: "I like the veneer of civility over raw human emotions, the elegant and opulent surroundings, the fashion, the dancing, and how meeting the eyes of someone or the fleeting touch of their hand can take on enormous meaning. As a writer of historical fiction, I also love how the Regency is like a mirror for today’s society- excessive consumerism, huge divide between rich and poor, and a lot of civil unrest." Read a full Q&A with the author here.
December 2018 Book of the Month | | I relished the first two books in this series (The Dark Days Club and The Dark Days Pact) and this final Bath-set instalment is a fittingly thrilling feast of fantastical foe-fighting and illicit liaisons. Spirited Lady Helen might be in the throes of finalising her wedding plans, but she has far greater matters to attend to, such as defeating the Grand Deceiver. Alongside the high-stakes, high-octane action, the delicious duplicity of Helen’s double-life existence further flavours this novel with edge and intrigue. While “her aunt and uncle, along with the rest of society, were under the impression that she had spent the last six months enjoying the delights of Brighton and Bath”, Helen had, in fact, been engaged in “killing murderers, and becoming one half of the Grand Reclaimer with Lord Carlston” as a member of the demon-fighting Dark Days Club. Talking of whom, Helen’s relationship with Carlston is a frisson-fuelled delight, thronging with “will they? Won’t they?” tension. Wildly inventive, and driven by the vitalities and conflicts of an engaging heroine, this trilogy is a magnificent melange of history, fantasy and heart-pounding passion.
Ally Kennen's observations of teenage life, along with the themes of dysfunctional families and the people who fall between the gaps in society, are what define her as one of the best authors writing for young people. In Bedlam Ally Kennen has once again been supremely clever in delivering a plot that will make your blood run cold whilst at the same time delivering dead pan humour. It's absolutely gripping but not everyone will be brave enough to read it. This is the third chilling teen title from Ally Kennen. Berserk and Beast are the 2nd and 1st respectively.
The first in a powerful new series, this is a spellbinding love story fuelled by overwhelming supernatural powers and the conflicting forces of good and evil. The sole survivor of a car crash in which her parents, younger sister and pet dog are all killed, Ever recovers to find she has the strange ability to see the auras surrounding other people. Mostly she tries to protect herself from looking too closely but, when new boy Damen arrives at school, Ever can no longer resist. Ever’s powers tell her that Damen is not what he seems but he also appears to be her destiny. How can she resist him?
A second story about Ever, a girl whose special powers mean she can read auras. Still in love with Damen, despite the confusion around his aura, Ever’s powers of seeing and understanding are increasing but her hold over Damen is fading. Ever enters the dangerous in-between world of Summerland but now must make a choice. Should she save her family or her love for Damen? A gripping supernatural romantic thriller.
June 2016 Book of the Month. Oozing with ambition, glamour and more ruthless Hollywood backstabbing than you can shake a designer stiletto at, this is the sassy first instalment of Alyson Noël’s Beautiful Idols series.Everyone in LA either is, or aspires to be, a somebody and few are more driven than ambitious young things Layla, Aster and Tommy. Blogger Layla dreams of studying journalism in New York, while strictly-raised rich girl Aster is desperate to make it as an actress, and country boy Tommy has set his sights on becoming a Grammy-winning musician. They share one thing in common: the desire to succeed at any cost, which is what pushes them to enter a contest to promote LA nightclubs to an A-list clientele. Enter Madison Brooks, the Hollywood starlet who’s shunned her past, “seized control of her destiny and made it her bitch”, and whose presence at any club brings a whole lot of kudos, not to mention press. When the lives of the three contestants entwine with Madison’s, they get a whole lot more than they bargained for after she goes missing and they’re implicated in a suspected homicide.Part thriller, part racy peek through the keyhole of the dark side of celebrity-worshipping culture, this novel is as exhilarating and seductive as the world it depicts and dissects, posing the million dollar question: how far will a person go to get what they want? In a Nutshell: Hollywood glamour | Ambition |Thriller
May 2014 Debut of the Month *** This book contains a strong storyline which centres around teen suicide A gripping and thought-provoking story that goes right to the heart of the extremes to which the powerful emotions of adolescence can lead. A teen suicide and the bullying that seems to have gone before it must be explored and explained even if everyone thinks they know how it happened. When Emma hangs herself Sara Wharton is blamed. Not for the action but for being a central cause of it. But was she? Sara her own way of looking at it; she is sure of where blame lies. But, she tells her story, Sara begins to consider the events differently. A Piece of Passion from Naomi Greenwood, Senior Commissioning Editor On first appearance Tease seems a familiar story: popular mean girls torment the new girl until the new girl kills herself. We think we know the story – popular and unpopular, in and out, bully and victim. But as you read on, it becomes clear that this is no ordinary take on high school bullying. Tease is told from the perspective of the bully, through Sara’s unreliable, twisting narrative. As the real truth is teased out, you’re forced to re-evaluate your perceptions every step of the way as the thin line between bully and victim is exposed. It’s one manipulative read. You’ll cringe, judge, sympathise and feel all kinds of love and hate for Sara. And that’s what makes this an addictive, divisive, provocative, important read. I’m thrilled that we’re publishing Tease this year, and I can’t wait to hear what readers have to say about it, because Tease is one of those books that gets people talking – and everyone has a different opinion. I wonder what yours will be?