Rebecca Behrens books
Rebecca Behrens books
Rebecca Behrens books

The Disaster Days: now available in paperback

The Disaster Days releases in trade paperback today!

Now all five of my books are available in that format–my personal favorite to read, because it’s perfect to stash in a beach/pool bag, a backpack, or hold onto while you’re standing on the subway. (I’ll never forget the time I tried to read Anna Karenina in hardcover on my commute . . .)

It’s great timing, too, because I recently found out that The Disaster Days has been selected for a few state reading lists:
the Florida Sunshine State Young Readers Award Book (Grades 3-5) for 2021-2022!
the Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Book Award list (Grades 6-9) for 2021-2022!
the 2022 Land of Enchantment Book Award!

And Alone in the Woods is on a couple of lists, too:
the 2021 Kansas National Education Association Reading Circle Recommended List!
the 2021/2022 Maine Student Book Award List

It’s really exciting to know that my stories will be on so many school and library shelves this next year.

Happy summertime, and happy reading!

More news and reviews for Alone in the Woods

Here’s a roundup of some more news and reviews for Alone in the Woods!

The book received great reviews from BCCB and the Midwest Book Review:

Behrens plays fair with both the friendship drama and the survival story, and each protagonist’s voice is astute and true to her own perspective. . . . In the northwoods or the school hallway, most readers will feel they’ve been there.”
—Elizabeth Bush, BCCB, Recommended

A deftly crafted, suspense laden, inherently entertaining, and thoroughly ‘kid friendly’ novel by an author with a remarkable talent for the kind of narrative driven storytelling skills that will keep a young reader’s riveted attention from beginning to cliffhanger ending. . . . [A]n extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to elementary school, middle school, and community library . . . collections.”
Midwest Book Review

And Alone in the Woods was featured as one of “40 New Books for Holiday Gifts in 2020” recommended by Jim Higgins of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

I’m also thrilled to share that Alone in the Woods is a Junior Library Guild Selection, and in the new year, Alone in the Woods will be a Literati Club Phoenix pick! It’s great news that the book will be finding an audience thanks to both of these fantastic curation services.

Interview with Author Caroline Starr Rose

Earlier this year, my friend Caroline Starr Rose (who is the fantastic author of May B, Blue Birds, Jasper and the Riddle of Riley’s Mine, and several fascinating picture books) was kind enough to invite me onto her blog for an interview:

Alone in the Woods: An Interview with Author Rebecca Behrens

Check it out to hear about how being the world’s oldest living tween has helped me write authentic MG fiction, as well as my research and inspiration for the book!

Interview with Pop! Goes the Reader

I really love the book blog Pop! Goes the Reader. It’s beautifully designed and illustrated, and Jen’s coverage of MG/YA books is so inclusive, thoughtful, and creative. So I was thrilled to partner with her to discuss Alone in the Woods. Check out our conversation to learn more about the inspiration behind the book, including my love for Wisconsin wildlife, and how my personal experiences with a fractured friendship helped me write this story–along with my advice for any readers going through something similar.

And earlier this fall, Jen compiled a fantastic list of 25 MG and YA survival stories to give young readers hope. If you enjoyed Alone in the Woods and The Disaster Days, check out the list to find other adventurous books!

ALONE IN THE WOODS on Teen Librarian Toolbox

To say 2020 has been a challenging year for us all is definitely an understatement. So I was thrilled to have the opportunity to write an article for Karen Jensen’s SLJ blog, Teen Librarian Toolbox, about resilience–one of the themes of my latest MG novel, Alone in the Woods:

Raising Superheroes: How Tough Times Create Resilient Kids

Check it out to learn more about real-life sisters who survived being lost in the woods, as well as tips to encourage resilience, preparation, and community engagement in your own family!

ALONE IN THE WOODS is now available!

For each book I’ve released, I’ve spent time in my home state of Wisconsin, visiting schools and talking with young readers. And during every single Q&A, the same question has come up: Have you written any stories set in Wisconsin?

It took me years, and four other books, to find the right story, but now I can finally answer: Yes!

My latest middle-grade novel, Alone in the Woods—which releases today!—is a thrilling survival story about Jocelyn and Alex, two former best friends who must work together to stay alive after getting lost in the Nicolet National Forest. But in some ways, it’s a love letter to my beautiful and ecologically rich home state. Set in both Madison—where I was born and raised, and still spend much of my time—and the Northwoods, I hope I captured the magic of a Wisconsin summer in its pages. From tubing on a river (my family used to go up to Twelve Foot Falls on the Pike River in Marinette County), to hiking in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest (the Cathedral Pines is one of my favorite spots—the old-growth trees are mesmerizing), to enjoying a buttermilk doughnut at Paul Bunyan’s Cook Shanty—those cherished experiences all helped inspire the book’s setting.

However, the girls’ harrowing adventure—in which after a tubing mishap, they wander off a trail and find themselves hopelessly lost, wearing only swimsuits and water shoes and with just the contents of their backpacks to help them survive the elements for days and nights—is thankfully not inspired by my own experiences exploring Wisconsin’s wild places. Well, except for all the bug bites. Those mosquitoes and deer flies can be vicious!

Reviewers so far have called Alone in the Woods “gripping,” “brisk,” “dangerous,” and “compelling,” and I hope readers will race to find out what happens to Jocelyn and Alex during their adventure in the woods. But as Emily Graham for Booklist notes in her review, its heart, this story is about surviving friendship as much as a forest: “The most tender wounds here are the emotional ones nursed by the two girls. . . . It’s simply the complicated business of growing up and outgrowing past selves. In this classic adventure story with the heart of a relationship drama, it’s easy to root for the complex girls and their deep friendship.” I couldn’t ask for a better review than that!
I hope you’ll join me on Jocelyn and Alex’s Northwoods adventure. And if reading this book makes you hungry for s’mores, I heartily recommend this recipe for s’mores bars. 🙂
PS If you want to celebrate the book’s release with me virtually, join me at my virtual launch with Mystery to Me bookstore on Wednesday, October 7!

Booklist loved ALONE IN THE WOODS

I was thrilled to read Booklist‘s review of Alone in the Woods–especially because they highlighted the “moments of peril and bodily danger,” but felt that “but the most tender wounds here are the emotional ones nursed by the two girls.” That’s exactly what I was going for! It’s really special to read a review that “gets” what you were going for as the author. 🙂

Great trade reviews for ALONE IN THE WOODS

Trade reviews for Alone in the Woods have started rolling in, and I’m excited to share what these critics from Kirkus Reviews and School Library Journal have to say about the girls’ Northwoods adventure:

Brisk, compelling, relatable, and dangerous–those are all adjectives I’m happy to read!

Alone in the Woods ARCs

I got a fun surprise in the mail the other day–a big box of books. Not just any books, though–advance reader copies of Alone in the Woods!

Of course I had to take them out to the park for a proper photo:

 

I realized *after* I got home that I cut off part of the title . . . Oops.

Here’s a sneak peek at the interior design (photo taken while I was reviewing the final pages):

This story is told in two points of view, and I love how the designer found subtle ways to distinguish those sections.

Alone in the Woods will be out in October 2020, and I can’t wait to share it with readers. 🙂

 

The Disaster Days is an official 2020 ILA Teachers’ Choices selection!

I’m thrilled to share that The Disaster Days is an official 2020 ILA Teachers’ Choices Selection. From ILA’s website:

Our Choices reading lists, shaped by thousands of students and educators across the United States, serve as a valuable resource—particularly in these times of remote and virtual learning. They bridge the distance by connecting us with stories that kids, teens, and teachers find inspiring, comforting, and empowering. . . . Teachers’ Choices identifies approximately 30 books rated by teachers, librarians, and reading specialists as outstanding for curriculum use.

I’m honored! You can view the whole list here. Also, the release of the Choices lists coincides with Children’s Book Week–an annual celebration of reading with tons of fun resources for kids, families, and educators. Check it out!

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