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Middle Grade Books:


 "An enjoyable twisty mystery and coming-of-age story."       
Kirkus Reviews

Twelve-year-old Sam Parsons tries to scheme his way out of a 500-mile journey to attend a funeral for his mom's reclusive but beloved Uncle Buster. After all, Sam has important business going on at home. He's close to being part of Joey Sabatini's elite posse, which places him just one degree of separation from his favorite football team. However, once he's forced to make the trip to Ashe County, North Carolina, Sam is sidetracked by suspicions about the circumstances surrounding Uncle Buster's demise. The surly, mysterious neighbor, the shadowy Meal on Wheels lady, the less-than-truthful sisters of the deceased, and the grunting hulk of a man dragging a bush hog across Uncle Buster's property are all suspects. Can Sam solve a mystery in the mountains while also scoring an NFL connection at home?

Cover art by Shelby Koehler



"A well-crafted novel about a fraught childhood moment."     

                                                                                                  --Kirkus Reviews *

                                                                                                                  *starred review,  Kirkus Best of 2019

Can a person just decide to give up feeling scared?

It’s 1933, and Dahlia Harrell lives in a hand-me-down mountain cabin built by her Grandpap’s Uncle Zeke. At eight-and-three-quarters, Dahlia knows all about being scared. She’s scared of snakes, high-up places, dark nights, and a mean ol’ sister named Celia. What she doesn’t understand is the new president’s nonsense: The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. 


Dahlia decides that enough money can buy away any reason she has for feeling afraid, and she sets her hope on the rumor of a treasure buried beneath Zeke's cabin. However, when her family is uprooted to become tenant farmers in a distant community, Dahlia’s quest for fearlessness ultimately sets her on a path of recklessness. What she fails to realize is that the secret to living a fearless life has been hers all along. And that treasure? Well, it just might hold the answer after all.

Resources for Teachers:
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