393a7594b3cd1b1163943a019bcb82faToday we welcome Kelly Barson to the Lucky 13 Then and NOW Blog series. With multiple award nominations for her 2013 debut, 45 POUNDS (more or less), Kelly’s new novel is eagerly anticipated and just happens to be coming out on April 5th, the same day as my new book!!


CHARLOTTE CUTS IT OUT, which Kirkus says474e3440657eb6497c8e9594381ce67a “offers important lessons in self-realization and collaboration,” is destined to be another beloved book, especially for teens struggling to forge their own path amid the competing pressures of family, friends and romance.


Kelly answered these questions on her writing journey:


If you could go back several years to give advice to your pre-published self, how far back would…


Liz Coley’s 2013 debut, a Young Adult psychological thriller, PRETTY GIRL 13, 51pCbx2oKbL._UX250_has been translated into eleven languages and made into an audio book!! It was selected for multiple best book lists, including:

2014 YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults list
2014 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant YA Readers list
2015-2016 Eliot Rosewater Indiana High School Book Award list
Booklist called  PRETTY GIRL 13 “chilling” and “fascinating.” School Library 13450398Journal said readers “will admire Angie’s struggles and journey.” Publisher’s Weekly said, “It’s a harrowing journey with no shortage of creepy moments and imagery, and readers should be fascinated by Angie’s efforts to put her life and…


27B_21-150x150Jennifer Salvato Doktorski had an established writing career in journalism, including writing for Cosmopolitan, before the release of her 2013 Debut, HOW MY SUMMER WENT UP IN FLAMES. In fact Jen was so prepared for the launch of her fiction writing career that she actually had two 2013 releases only two months apart! Her second was the YA novel, FAMOUS LAST WORDS.


Both books were critically acclaimed. Publisher’s Weekly said HOW MY 9781442459403SUMMER WENT UP IN FLAMES was “full of emotion and wit.” Kirkus called it “a great ride.”


FAMOUS LAST WORDS was similarly lauded. Publisher’s FLW-smallWeekly said she “offered another fun and quirky protagonist, along with a well-developed supporting cast.” Kirkus…


2-4c3b569ec9Today, we’re joined by Sarah Skilton whose powerful 2013 Young Adult debut, BRUISED,  received a starred review from Publishers Weekly!  BRUISED went on to be named a Bank Street Best Book of the Year, a Tristate Review Book of Note and has been nominated for the Arkansas Teen Book Award, the Missouri Association of Librarians 118981Reader’s Award for 2015-2016 and the Maryland Association of School Librarians 2014-2015 Black-Eyed Susan Book Award.


In 2014 Sarah followed her strong debut with HIGH & DRY, a second Young Adult novel that Kirkus called, “A dark, well-constructed mystery with a strong voice.” HIGH & DRY was a quick favourite with readers, becoming a Staff Pick at McNally Jackson Books in New York City!