On March 7, the second annual NoVA Teen Book Festival will kick off at Washington-Lee High School and Arlington Central Library. The lineup consists of more than 20 local and national authors who will discuss and promote their new novels. Here’s a sneak peek at three of the authors and their novels.
Robin Talley’s ‘Lies We Tell Ourselves’
In her debut novel, Talley explores the idea of race and integration in 1950s Virginia. The story is told through the alternating points of view of Sarah Dunbar, one of the first black students to attend the all-white Jefferson Middle School, and Linda Hairston, whose father is one of the biggest supporters of “seperate but equal” in town. Once the girls are forced to work on a project together, they explore their beliefs about race, civil rights and friendship on the utmost personal level. –Cate Jensen
Sara Raasch’s ‘Snow Like Ashes’
Raasch’s debut fantasy novel examines the fictional land of Winter and the loss of its status as a powerful and magical kingdom 16 years earlier. Meira, a young refugee girl dedicated to rebuilding Winter, learns of an ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic and embarks on a dangerous adventure full of malevolent magic and perilous politics. Raasch’s novel focuses on love, strength and the journey of controlling one’s destiny. –Susannah Black
Jason Reynolds’ ‘The Boy in the Black Suit’
“When I Was the Greatest” author Jason Reynolds’ latest follows 17-year-old Matt, who wears a black suit every day as part of his job at a funeral home to help support his struggling father after the passing of his mother. Things are rough for Matt until he meets Lovey, a young girl who has had an even rougher time than Matt but remains strong. Matt can’t get Lovey out of his mind as she understands his loneliness and maybe can help take it away. –Michael Balderston