Middle Grade Books:
"A powerful tale of a headstrong and compassionate youngster.
When Dahlia's brother Charlie is diagnosed with Scarlet Fever and the Harrell family is forced to quarantine, everything begins to spin out of control. That spoiled Rosie Blevins tries to steal Dahlia's one true friend, Ruby Walker, and Dahlia is left out of the daily goings-on at school. When Uncle Ennis shows up with his banjo, he brings truth and light to all the darkest places...until Rosie Blevins finds a way to ruin that, too. Suddenly, the traveling troubadour's motives for visiting Lothian Mill are called into question, and Dahlia is left to wonder what and who she can trust.
Charlie's Song, set in 1935 rural North Carolina, is a heartwarming story about family, friendship, and the transformative power of forgiveness.
"An enjoyable twisty mystery and coming-of-age story."
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."
*starred review, Kirkus Best Books 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.