Published Date: 9-15-20
Publisher: INtense Publications LLC
Stuttering Darby is never perfect enough for her mother. Justin's been silent since his dad died. Naz is struggling to learn English. But after they meet at summer camp, mysterious calliope music from an abandoned warehouse grants them power to communicate without words. When they sneak inside, the dark, empty space bursts into a magical carnival. They're greeted by the ghost of Leroy Usher, who asks for their help convincing his family to restore the carnival to its former glory. In return, he promises to teach the kids how to find their voices. As Darby, Justin, and Naz are swept off on a series of midnight adventures via Mr. Usher's carnival rides, they discover they're capable of more than they ever imagined. With each challenge, their confidence in communicating – and in themselves – grows. Meanwhile, they scheme to persuade the Usher family to revive the carnival. But when Darby’s bunkmates trick her into starring in the camp talent show, her budding confidence falters. Can she risk being less than perfect by performing in the show and speaking up to Mr. Usher's resistant son? If not, she'll put the carnival in danger and sabotage her most important quest: to believe in herself, stutter and all.
Laura Segal Stegman grew up with parents who valued reading, and she still finds herself spellbound by middle grade fiction. Some of her favorites, then and now, are The Diamond in the Window, Ellen Tebbits, All of A Kind Family, Wonder, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and The Miraculous. As a writer, her non-fiction credits include collaboration on the travel book Only in New York, and her feature stories have appeared in Los Angeles Times and Westways Magazine, among others. A long-time publicist, she has represented numerous arts organizations. Summer of L.U.C.K. is her debut novel.