The Otherwoods

$17.99 USD

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Too Bright to See meets Doll Bones in this spooky, atmospheric adventure about a reluctant hero’s journey into a terrifying other world.

Some would call River Rydell a “chosen one”: born with the ability to see monsters and travel to a terrifying world called The Otherwoods, they have all the makings of a hero. But River just calls themself unlucky. It’s not like anyone actually believes River can do these things, so the way River sees it, it’s best to just ignore anything Otherwoods-related.

But The Otherwoods won’t be ignored any longer.

When River’s only friend (and crush) Avery is dragged into The Otherwoods, River has no choice but to confront the world they’ve seen only in their nightmares—but reality is more horrifying than they could have ever imagined. With only their cat for protection and a teen spirit as their guide, River must face The Otherwoods and their own fears to become the hero they were (unfortunately) destined to be.

Justine Pucella Winans is a queer and nonbinary writer who resides in Los Angeles with their husband and orange tabby cat. They graduated with a B.F.A in Acting from Chapman University and now work at a talent agency. Originally from Cleveland, they still say "pop" and have love for the city, just not the cold. When not writing, they try their best at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, read an alarming amount of manga, and try to make pasta even a fourth as good as their nonna's

 "Winans’ nightmarish monster realm holds horrors and revelations . . . River’s sarcasm injects welcome humor into the narrative, which is as much about their personal journey toward self-confidence and silencing bullies as it is about surviving literal monsters. This reluctant hero will mean the world to many readers and be beloved by all." —Booklist, starred review

"[An] emotionally complex portal fantasy. . . . Balancing gruesome creature encounters with an empowering meditation on bravery, this middle grade debut offers up a panoply of nightmarish ghouls and harrowing perils, but the real appeal comes from tender interpersonal ties and themes of self-discovery." —Publishers Weekly, starred review

"An excitingly suspenseful portal horror led by a cleverly humorous, adorably queer, and intrepid nonbinary tween . . . The Otherwoods is creepy fun with a queer heart, and a cunning and determined protagonist whose growing self-confidence is a joy to experience." —Shelf Awareness

"Spooky, funny, and queer—what’s not to love?" —Kirkus Reviews

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