My next upper middle grade novel, Coming Up Short, will be published on June 21, 2022, and it’s now available for preorder, on Goodreads, and on Edelweiss (and I think it will be popping up on NetGalley before long, too).
Coming Up Short is about softball, performance anxiety, a transformative summer trip (to Gray Island—the setting of Up for Air!), and what happens when you can no longer count on the things that used to feel certain. Working on this book has brought me a lot of joy and purpose during much of 2020 and 2021, and I can’t wait for readers to meet Bea.
Here’s the full description:
A heartfelt novel about a softball-loving girl coming to terms with her parents’ humanity, from the acclaimed author of Up for Air and Saint Ivy
Bea’s parents think she can accomplish absolutely anything—and she’s determined to prove them right. But at the end of seventh grade, on the same day she makes a gutsy play to send her softball team to the league championships and Xander, the boy she likes, makes it clear that he likes her too, a scandal shakes up her world. Bea’s dad made a big mistake, taking money that belonged to a client. He’s now suspended from practicing law, and another lawyer spread the news online. To make matters worse, that other lawyer is Xander’s dad.
Bea doesn’t want to be angry with her dad, especially since he feels terrible and is trying to make things right. But she can’t face the looks of pity from all her friends, and then she starts missing throws in softball because she’s stuck in her own head. The thing she was best at seems to be slipping out of her fingers along with her formerly happy family. She’s not sure what’s going to be harder—learning to throw again, or forgiving her dad. How can she be the best version of herself when everything she loves is falling apart?
You can read more about why I wrote this book and why I ADORE the cover, which was illustrated by Mike Burdick and designed by Deena Fleming, in this guest post I wrote for MG Book Village. And how great does it look next to Up for Air?! My two sporty, summery upper middle grade novels are very well coordinated.