Keeping Up with the Sweet 16s: Wisconsin State Reading Association Reading List

Each year, the Wisconsin State Reading Association’s Children’s Literature Committee selects books published during the previous year to recommend as “the most interesting and valuable books for educators and children to read.” The committee evaluates titles based on “the quality of the literature, the appeal for students, and the value for classroom use.”

Congratulations to the 5 Sweet Sixteens authors whose debut novels were chosen for the WSRA’s chapter books through eighth grade list, Just One More Page:
 
Victoria J Coe (FENWAY AND HATTIE)   bees   CHARLIE PRICE   Lois Sepahban (PAPER WISHES)   Laura Shovan (THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY)
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“I Wish I’d Known…”: Advice for Debut Authors, Part 5

Here’s the final installment in our series where members of the Sweet Sixteens share what they’ve learned in their debut year.

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

Part 4

Sarah Ahiers, author of Assassin’s Heart and Thief’s Cunning

Sarah Ahiers   Assassins Heart   thief's cunning

Find her online at sarahahiers.com

“I wish I’d known that even though everyone says you shouldn’t read reviews, I shouldn’t really read reviews. But it also seems to be a lesson everyone needs to learn on their own.

Also, that writing book 2 will be the hardest thing ever, even though I had written books before, and after, I’d sold Assassin’s Heart. It didn’t matter. It was still really hard, just like for countless other debut authors before me. They were right all along.”

 

Laura Shovan, author of The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary

Laura Shovan   Laura Shovan (THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY)

Find her online at laurashovan.com

“I wish I’d known that the middle grade “slow burn” was a real thing. My book came out in April. The first six weeks after launch were a roller-coaster. The book did well, but sales and readership really started taking off when the school year began. Teachers, librarians, and parents are still finding my book, talking about it, and sharing it with young readers.”

 

Cynthia Reeg, author of From the Grave

cynthia reeg   from-the-grave-monster-trilogy-1

Find her online at www.cynthiareeg.com

“I wish I’d known that publishing a first novel is a rollercoaster ride of highs and lows. That it is a marathon of edits and promotion and self-doubt and exhilaration. I feel extremely lucky to have joined with The Sweet Sixteens to weather the storms and to celebrate the highs. I’d encourage debut authors to find peer support in their writing community. It will make the adventure much easier and enjoyable!”

 

Lisa A. Koosis, author of Resurrecting Sunshine

Lisa A. Koosis   resurrectingsunshine

Find her online at www.lisakoosis.com

“I wish I’d known that as amazing as my debut year would be, it would also be terrifying, that there would be times when everything would be outside my comfort zone. I wish I’d known that I’d have moments when I’d want to make the whole thing just stop…and that it’s normal to feel that way, that it will eventually pass. I wish I’d known to trust myself more, that when it came time, I would find it in me to do what needed to be done (like speaking in front of people!). So trust yourself…and enjoy the ride!”

 

Harriet Reuter Hapgood, author of The Square Root of Summer

Harriet Reuter Hapgood   square root of summer

Find her online at harrietreuterhapgood.com

“I wish I’d known that I really was invited to the party! My first panels and green rooms and events were a crash-course in imposter syndrome. The thing is, I deserved to be there. I might not know everything (joke, I know everything), but I knew how to write get an agent, write a YA book, sell it – which qualified me to answer questions about YA, publishing, craft. I did all the things, but I wish I’d done so with way less anxiety and beta-blockers and self-doubt, and much more razzmatazz and balloons.”

 

 

Autograph, Please: Where to Find Signed Copies of Books by the Sweet Sixteens

Signed books make great holiday gifts! Many of the Sweet Sixteens have paired up with local bookstores to offer signed copies; click on the bookstore links below to order yours today.

Fenway and Hattie

 

FENWAY AND HATTIE by Victoria J. Coe

Henry’s Bear Park, Providence/Arlington/Cambridge/Brookline, MA

 

 

COUNTING THYME

COUNTING THYME by Melanie Conklin

[words] bookstore, Maplewood, NJ

 

 

WeightofZero_front cover new12.indd

 

THE WEIGHT OF ZERO by Karen Fortunati

Barnes & Noble, Milford, CT

 

 

 

Kathy MacMillan (SWORD AND VERSE)

 

SWORD AND VERSE by Kathy MacMillan

The Children’s Bookstore, Baltimore, MD

 

 

RIPPLE

 

RIPPLE by Heather Smith Meloche

The Book Beat, Oak Park, MI

 

 

thegirlwhofell_comps_006

 

THE GIRL WHO FELL by Shannon M. Parker

Sherman’s Maine Coast Bookshop, Damariscotta, ME
Barnes & Noble, Canton, CT

 

 

WHERE FUTURES END

 

WHERE FUTURES END by Parker Peevyhouse

Hicklebee’s, San Jose, CA

 

 

Underwater

 

UNDERWATER by Marisa Reichardt

{pages} a bookstore, Manhattan Beach, CA

 

 

crossing the line

 

CROSSING THE LINE by Meghan Rogers

Children’s Book World, Haverford, PA

 

 

BFF Bucket List

 

THE BFF BUCKET LIST by Dee Romito

Monkey See, Monkey Do Bookstore, Clarence, NY

 

 

Laura Shovan (THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY)

 

THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY by Laura Shovan

The Ivy Bookshop, Baltimore, MD

 

 

 

Monica Tesler (BOUNDERS)tundra-trialsBOUNDERS (hardcover) by Monica Tesler

EARTH FORCE RISING (BOUNDERS 1, paperback) by Monica Tesler

THE TUNDRA TRIALS (BOUNDERS 2, hardcover) by Monica Tesler

Buttonwood Books and Toys (Please include signing and personalization requests in Order Comments section of electronic checkout or contact the store for assistance.)

 

The Sweet Sixteens at the NCTE Annual Convention

annual2016

alan_books_logo_bw-01

Many of our members will be on hand at the NCTE/ALAN Annual Convention this weekend in Atlanta!  Here’s where to find them:

Friday, November 18

9:30 AM:

  • Cheryl Blackford will appear on the “Engaging the Muse: Advocating for Creative Thinking in the Common Core Classroom” panel with Anne Nesbet, Tracey Baptiste, Laura Gary, Jennifer Ziegler, and Terra Elan McVoy

11:00 AM:

  • Jennie Brown will present “Teachers Who Write: Finding the Teach, Write, Life Balance” (B311)

12:30 PM:

  • Tara Sim will appear on the “Diverse Voices in Historical YA” panel

2:00 PM:

  • Cheryl Blackford will be signing LIZZIE AND THE LOST BABY at the HMH booth

4:00 PM:

  • Victoria J. Coe will be signing FENWAY AND HATTIE at the Penguin booth
  • Elly Swartz will appear on the “Bibliotherapy: Advocacy on the Page and in the Classroom” panel with Lynda Mullaly Hunt, Anne Nesbet, Erin Moulton. Kari Ann Holt, moderated by Paul Hankins (B407)

 

Saturday, November 19

8:00 AM:

  • Tara Sim will appear on the “Making Space for Advocacy in YA Speculative Fiction” panel

9:30 AM:

  • Elly Swartz will be signing FINDING PERFECT at the MCPG booth.
  • Alison Umminger will be signing AMERICAN GIRLS at the Macmillan booth.
  • Laura Shovan will be appearing on the “Writing for a Better World: Poetry Response to World Events” panel with Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Irene Latham, Margarita Engle, and Tara Smith (B210)

2:45 PM:

  • Audrey Coulthurst and Tara Sim will appear on the “Authors Exploring Diverse Perspectives in the Classroom” panel (A404)

4:00 PM:

  • Laura Shovan will be signing THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY at the SCBWI Southern Breeze Signing (A411)
  • Tara Sim will be signing TIMEKEEPER at the Sky Pony Booth (#236)

 

Sunday, November 20

9:00 AM:

  • Laura Shovan will be signing THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY at the Random House booth (#412)

10:00 AM:

  • Sarah S. Reida will be signing MONSTERVILLE: A LISSA BLACK PRODUCTION at the Sky Pony Booth (#236).

12:00 Noon:

  • Victoria J. Coe and Laura Shovan will present “Writing Strategies for Teaching Empathy Through POV” with Cheryl Lawton Malone (A310)

 

Monday, November 21

9:20 AM:
  • Amber Smith, author of THE WAY I USED TO BE, will be appearing on the panel, “Rape and Healing” with Laurie Halse Anderson and E. K. Johnston. Chaired by Ricki Ginsberg. (B312-B314)

Thank the Admins!

“Thank the Admins” is an end-of-2016 feature that provides a shout-out to the core group of sixteen authors who have been the tireless engine behind making The Sweet Sixteens a cohesive debut group. They’ve been the brilliant minds behind ARC tours, Sweet Sixteen logo & web design, Facebook posts, Twitter love and so much more.  We hope you’ll take a moment to extend your gratitude and give these peeps a virtual high five.

Shannon M. Parker

thegirlwhofell_comps_006rattledbones_final-covercs-nkdtwyaey-2as-m-parker-1Your role as admin: Shannon wrangles news for The 16th Day Update, a feature that promotes Sixteener successes and announcements on the 16th day of each month. She’s also responsible for plastering The Sweet Sixteen website with all the gorgeous MG and YA debut covers!

What’s up next:  Shannon will release her sophomore YA novel in August of 2017. THE RATTLED BONES is *mostly* YA contemporary with a lot of creepy paranormal. THE RATTLED BONES is the story of Rilla Brae–a girl working in the male-dominated fisheries–as she contends with first-generation college access, grief, eugenics, love, forced institutionalization, and the central premise that secrets will always rise to the surface. Plus, there’s a ghost.

Shannon is also a contributing author to WELCOME HOME, a YA anthology on adoption that will release in September, 2017. Shannon’s story “Tunneling Through” takes an important look at belonging, gender identity and the fierce and lasting grip of trauma.

Thing you learned in your debut year: “I can’t live without Marisa Reichardt.”

Laura Shovan

Last-Fifth-GradeLaura ShovanYour role as admin: Laura moderated “The Debut Club” series of Fearless 15er interviews and runs the The Sweet 16s Facebook page with Marisa Reichardt. Ever wonder how your news gets onto our Facebook page for everyone to see? Welp, it’s either Laura or Marisa making sure that all of The Sweet Sixteen news finds a Facebook presence.

What’s up next:  Laura has a contemporary middle grade novel (in prose!), due out in 2018 from Wendy Lamb Books/Random House. We cannot wait for more of her gorgeous work!

Thing you learned in your debut year: “Being a debut novelist is a roller-coaster ride. You need an iron stomach and good friends to hold your hands, laugh with, and also scream with.”

 

Kim Savage

after the woodsbeautiful-broken-girls Kim SavageYour role as admin: Kim was responsible for our super fun Sweet Sixteens Contests that helped readers get early snippets of Sweet Sixteen books. She also worked as part of a team of four admins to manage our twitter account!

What’s up next: Kim has her next YA novel, BEAUTIFUL BROKEN GIRLS, hitting the shelves February 21, 2017! Think The Virgin Suicides meets Romeo and Juliet with a mystical secret.
Thing you learned in your debut year: “To turn off the noise and write the next thing. And the next. Once I re-committed to the art, it all fell into place. I’m on book 4, and the Muse and I are friends again. It’s all good.”

 Bridget Hodder

RAT PRINCEBridget HodderYour role as admin: For two years, Bridget organized the super fun “Top Sixteen Lists” for the Sweet Sixteens blog. She’d post fab topics on our discussion boards and other Sweet Sixteen authors would populate the list with their own witty contributions.!

What’s up next: Bridget is working on two new projects and trying to keep up with all her commitments with the release of THE RAT PRINCE.

Thing you learned in your debut year: “The process of getting published takes a long time. I think that finding other like-minded souls and sharing the journey with them is the best thing a new author can do to stay on course!”

 

 

 

Autograph, Please: Where to Find Signed Copies of Books by the Sweet Sixteens

Many of the Sweet Sixteens have paired up with local bookstores to offer signed copies! Click on the bookstore links below to order yours today!

Fenway and Hattie

 

FENWAY AND HATTIE by Victoria J. Coe

Henry’s Bear Park, Providence/Arlington/Cambridge/Brookline, MA

 

 

COUNTING THYME

COUNTING THYME by Melanie Conklin

[words] bookstore, Maplewood, NJ

 

 

Kathy MacMillan (SWORD AND VERSE)

 

SWORD AND VERSE by Kathy MacMillan

The Children’s Bookstore, Baltimore, MD

 

 

RIPPLE

 

RIPPLE by Heather Smith Meloche

The Book Beat, Oak Park, MI

 

 

WHERE FUTURES END

 

WHERE FUTURES END by Parker Peevyhouse

Hicklebee’s, San Jose, CA

 

 

Underwater

 

UNDERWATER by Marisa Reichardt

{pages} a bookstore, Manhattan Beach, CA

 

 

crossing the line

 

CROSSING THE LINE by Meghan Rogers

Children’s Book World, Haverford, PA

 

 

BFF Bucket List

 

THE BFF BUCKET LIST by Dee Romito

Monkey See, Monkey Do Bookstore, Clarence, NY

 

 

Laura Shovan (THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY)

 

THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY by Laura Shovan

The Ivy Bookshop, Baltimore, MD

 

 

Shannon Parker (THE GIRL WHO FELL)

 

THE GIRL WHO FELL by Shannon M. Parker

Sherman’s Maine Coast Bookshop, Damariscotta, ME
Barnes & Noble, Canton, CT

 

 

WeightofZero_front cover new12.indd

 

THE WEIGHT OF ZERO by Karen Fortunati

Barnes & Noble, Milford, CT

Extras! Extras!: Bonus material from Sweet Sixteens authors

Here’s a guide to some of the extras that Sweet Sixteens have been posting around the internet, including deleted scenes, extra stories, and details from the worlds of their books!

 

ASSASSIN’S HEART by Assassins HeartSarah Ahiers
Quiz: In Which ASSASSIN’S HEART Family do You Belong?
.
.
……
..
… 

Ivory and Bone

IVORY AND BONE by Julie Eshbaugh

Pinterest Inspiration Board: Photos and artwork that inspired IVORY AND BONE

 

 

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Sword And Verse

SWORD AND VERSE by Kathy MacMillan

Extra stories, pronunciation guide, and playlist, including: 

  • “Alterations”: Raisa’s Selection and first day in the Adytum.
  • “The Only Bearable Solution“:  The story of how Mati fell in love with Raisa, from his point of view.
  • “Iron and Silk”: Recruiting one Tutor into the Resistance was a risk.  It would be madness to try again – but then, Jonis never was one to play it safe.
  • “Exposed”: Mati has to do some quick thinking when his father finds out about him and Raisa.

PBJ Society

THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE OF THE PB&J SOCIETY by Janet Sumner Johnson

Annie’s Bet: Six months before their last great adventure, Annie and Jason fight for justice at recess.

(at the same link there is also PB&J Society Rules Printable, & Discussion Guide)

 

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BFF Bucket List

THE BFF BUCKET LIST by Dee Romito

Behind the Book  – Designing The BFF Bucket List Cover: A look behind the scenes of designing and illustrating a cover! (With a peek at early cover designs.)

 

 


Secrets-of-the-dragon-tomb
SECRETS OF THE DRAGON TOMB by Patrick Samphire
Meet the Characters: Find out about all the exciting and peculiar characters in SECRETS OF THE DRAGON TOMB

Laura Shovan (THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY)
THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY by Laura Shovan
“A Fib Poem”: Fibonacci poem in the voice of Newt Mathews, cut from the final book.