“This spell-binding read will keep you turning pages.”

Three New Releases to Kick-Off the New Year, EXAMINER.COM
“Sovern’s coming of age tale is exceptionally written. Though the book starts quietly, it’s depth, realism, and surprising sci fi twist take readers on a roller coaster of intense emotion. So, if you’re interested in a beautifully written YA book that delves into the joy of love, the pain of loss, and the very nature of reality, then Life at the Speed of Us is perfect for you. This incredible story is one you won’t soon forget!”

HEARD > HERD: Book of the Month
Only a year ago, Sovern and her mom were laughing and talking in the car. Now her mother is gone, and Sovern refuses to talk. If only she had not distracted her mother at that moment! Her equation is “me + anyone I love = disaster.” Dyslexic Sovern is also a math genius who sees patterns and equations everywhere she looks. None of that matters when she skips school again, snowboards a dangerous run, and crashes into a tree. When her ski patrol “family”—father and patrollers—rescues her, she sees the hurt in her father’s eyes. She decides she must change her ways. But when Sovern returns to that tree and places her palm on it, she enters alternate dimensions. In one she encounters her mother—still alive. In another she falls in love with a young Indian from the past. It is intriguing to find quantum mechanics blended into a coming-of-age story. Sovern’s drive to understand life through equations and to make sense of the multiverse she experiences makes it seem believable. However, this is most of all a story that is rich in sensory detail and filled with dynamic characters, both teen and adult. Sovern’s growth as a character peaks when she must make a most difficult decision. Will she stay with the father she loves in the life they have been given? Younger teens may not follow the quantum theory, but they will keep turning the pages.
Maria Unruh, VOYA

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One night, Oona Antunes literally splits in two. Her spirit, weary of a life lived without love or meaning, exits her body but does not leave altogether. She watches herself dance with an unwanted date, sneak out of the winter formal alone, and then curl up in the woods near her house to quietly freeze to death. But Oona’s body is found before it’s too late, forcing Oona down a path to recovery she is not convinced she wants to make. As her body heals, Oona watches herself tentatively build a new life, but she will have to face some very hard truths about herself and her family if she truly wants to live. Approaching teen suicide directly and honestly, this debut novel packs a walloping emotional punch. Alternating Oona’s first- and third-person narratives is a brutally effective device illustrating just how detached teens can feel from their own lives. Raw but with insight and tenderness, this story deftly explores life’s varied riches that come from the connections we build with others.
Summer Hayes, BOOKLIST

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Sappenfield’s writing has a delicate beauty. It is reminiscent of Francesca Lia Block, the gauzy dreamlike prose that conceals terrible truths.
Diane Colson, VOYA

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