Melody Carlson's New Fashion-Focused Series for Girls
First Two Books, Premiere and Catwalk, Slated for June Publication
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., May 26, 2010 – The glare of fashionistas on the red carpet and the glamour of the fashion industry come alive in a new book series by top young adult fiction author Melody Carlson. Zondervan and Carlson have paired up to introduce a new series―On the Runway―with publication of two new teen fiction books, Premiere and Catwalk in June.
Written for girls between the ages of 13 and 16, On the Runway follows fast on the heels of Carlson’s successful Carter House GirlsSeries. Zondervan also served as publisher of that series.
“Melody Carlson’s storytelling serves as a source of inspiration and encouragement for teens to explore new perspectives. Throughout these new books her characters illustrate the positive impact of Christian values in various situations, making them a must-read,” said Annette Bourland, senior vice president and publisher with Zonderkidz.
The books feature two sisters who couldn’t be more different. Erin Forrester is focused on a film career and tries to stay outside the spotlight, while her older sister, Paige, lives for high fashion and strives for attention. But with the launch of On the Runway, their fashion-centric television show, the sisters finally have at least one thing in common.
Premiere features fifteen-year-old Jessie Hatcher, a girl with ADHD whose normal life includes dealing with her mom’s bipolar disorder. Jessie’s “normal” changes when the father she thought was dead shows up at her door. While staying with her “bio-dad” in Florida for the summer, Jessie discovers a battered book with the initials RL, and learns to deal with a man who teaches her the art of sushi by tormenting her. Life isn’t any saner with her dad, but a cute guy and that mysterious book might just be the crazy Jessie needs.
In Catwalk, readers meet Bryn O’Connor, who is good at keeping secrets. But when a car accident reveals her boyfriend’s abusive behavior, the truth is unleashed. It starts a tidal wave of trouble in Bryn’s life: enemies who once were friends, a restraining order violation and her world unraveled. If that weren’t enough, her grandmother Mim arrives, attempting Mexican cuisine and insisting that Bryn try surfing. It’s all too much and even Bryn’s habit of daydreaming won’t offer an escape this time. Could a mysterious book she found at the hospital hold the secret to riding a tsunami like her life? As the story progresses, Bryn searches for her identity and a feeling of empowerment.
“We feel the excitement and charisma of the fashion industry setting will keep readers not only attracted to but engaged in reading the entire series,” said Bourland, adding, “These books will appeal to readers of Melody’s past series, and, as the pressures grow between the two main characters in the book, so does the drama. It’s this type of storytelling that makes Melody Carlson a bestselling author to readers worldwide.”
Premiere, the first book in the series, follows the successes and missteps of the two very different Forrester sisters as they embark on a joint project: their television show. Sisterly bonds are tested and plenty of drama ensues as the siblings learn that it takes two to keep their once-in-a-lifetime project afloat. A guest spot on a hot teen reality series and their first big red-carpet assignment give this unlikely partnership plenty of room for success and even more for failure.
In Catwalk, the Forrester sisters take their hit show to New York, learning that success in the big city comes with big challenges. As the girls cover Fashion Week together, they learn to value and grow from the gifts of each other. Paige is determined to garner the attention of New York’s top designers, but her newfound fame threatens to go to her head. Erin wants to help promote the work of some eco-minded designers, but struggles to be taken seriously.
Both Premiere and Catwalk contain 224 pages, are available in softcover, retail for $9.99 (USD) each, and will be available wherever books are sold worldwide.
Zondervan is planning to publish Carlson’s third book in the On the Runway series, Rendezvous, which is set in Paris; book four Spotlight, which is set in London; book five Glamour, set in the Bahamas; and Ciao, the sixth book, set in Milan. Plans are for Rendezvous to publish in September 2010, Spotlight to publish in November 2010, Glamour to publish in March 2011, and Ciao to publish in October 2011.
“We feel that the books we publish offer a distinctly Christian perspective and a ‘safe’ alternative to secular YA fiction, especially because all of our titles have been vetted by theological experts,” said Annette Bourland.
Online Promotions-Contest, Book Trailer, Book Giveaways, Facebook and More: The On the Runway series is being promoted heavily to teen readers online. Quizzes, sampling, and a special contest will provide a chance for teens ages 13-16 to win a Kate Spade bag. Teens should visit Zondervan’s Good Teen Reads Facebook fan page and www.zondervan.com/Teen for further information. A book video trailer will also be available and book giveaways will be hosted on GoodReads.com, and TeenReads.com.
Readers are being asked to log on to the Zondervan Good Teen Reads Facebook page at facebook.com/goodteenreads (under the “discussion tab”) and explain where they left the book, or how they found it. Readers are also encouraged to talk about it on their own Facebook pages. A grand prize will be offered to the person with the most compelling reader’s “pass it on” story through the zondervan.com/teen site.
Reviews will be included on the Planet Wisdom website during summer 2010 and book discussion guides will be made available on author Melody Carlson’s website at www.melodycarlson.com, and on the Good Teen Reads page on Facebook.
About the Author: Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books for teens, women, and children. Before publishing, Melody traveled around the world, volunteered in teen ministry, taught preschool, raised two sons, and worked briefly in interior design and later in international adoption. “I think real-life experiences inspire the best fiction,” she says. Her wide variety of books seems to prove this theory.