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May 7 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
In-Person: An Evening with Leah Johnson | Ellie Engle Saves Herself
Books & Books presents…
AN EVENING WITH LEAH JOHNSON
in conversation with Chantel Acevedo
Sunday, May 7th, 6:30 PM | Books & Books, Coral Gables
About the Book:
From award-winning YA author Leah Johnson comes her middle grade debut: a laugh-until-you-cry, cry-until-you-laugh story about friendship, change, and the power we have to love ourselves.
Ellie Engle doesn’t stand out. Not at home, where she’s alone with her pet fish since her dad moved away and her mom has to work around the clock . Not at the bakery, where she helps out old Mr. Walker on the weekends. And definitely not at school, where her best friend Abby—the coolest, boldest, most talented girl in the world—drags Ellie along on her never-ending quest to “make her mark.” To someone else, a life in the shadows might seem boring, or lonely. But not to Ellie. As long as she has Abby by her side and a comic book in her hand, she’s quite content.
Too bad life didn’t bother checking in with Ellie. Because when a freak earthquake hits her small town, Ellie wakes up with the power to bring anything back to life with just her touch. And when a video of her using her powers suddenly goes viral, Ellie’s life goes somewhere she never imagined—or wanted: straight into the spotlight.
Surviving middle school is hard enough. Surviving middle school when paparazzi are camped out on your front lawn and an international pop singer wants you to use your powers on live tv and you might be in love with your best friend but she doesn’t know it? Absolutely impossible.
About the Author:
Leah Johnson is an eternal midwesterner and author of award-winning books for children and young adults. Her bestselling debut YA novel, You Should See Me in a Crown, was a Stonewall Honor Book, and the inaugural Reese’s Book Club YA pick. In 2021, TIME named You Should See Me in a Crown one of the 100 Best Young Adult Books of All Time. Leah’s essays and cultural criticism can be found in Teen Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Cosmopolitan among others. Her debut middle grade, Ellie Engle Saves Herself is forthcoming from Disney-Hyperion in May 2023.
About the Moderator:
Called “a master storyteller” by Kirkus Reviews, Chantel Acevedo is the author of the novels Love and Ghost Letters, A Falling Star, The Distant Marvels, which was a finalist for the 2016 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, and , The Living Infinite, hailed by Booklist as a “vivid and enthralling tale of love and redemption.” Muse Squad: The Cassandra Curse and Muse Squad: TheMystery of the Tenth, Acevedo’s new middle grade duology (called “Riveting and suspenseful” by School Library Journal) was published by Balzer + Bray. Her latest middle grade novel, THE CURSE ON SPECTACLE KEY, is a lightly spooky story set in theFlorida Keys, published September 6th, 2022. She is Professor of English at the University of Miami, where she directs the MFA program.