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R.L. Toalson

Middle Grade, Simon & Schuster / Alladin, 2024

Junior Library Guild Gold selection

There’s a new man in her mom’s life, and Victoria is determined to get rid of him—no matter what. Both a standalone novel and a follow up to The First Magnificent Summer, this pitch-perfect middle grade story is destined to become a classic.

Thirteen-year-old aspiring writer Victoria Reeves remains dedicated to writing in her diary as her reading tastes evolve from Virginia Woolf to Sylvia Plath. She’s growing up—getting the hang of her monthly “visitor,” coming to terms with her relationship with her estranged father, and grappling with her ever-evolving views of womanhood. But the summer brings unexpected bumps along the way when Victoria develops complicated feelings about the cute boy next door and decidedly uncomplicated ones about her mom’s new boyfriend.

To protect her mom—and the family dynamic she’s used to—from this unwanted interloper, Victoria will do what it takes to send him packing. But when she goes too far, Victoria realizes all she’s done is ruin a good thing for her mom. Is it too late to set things right?

Rights Sold:

US: Simon & Schuster (NA)


"Thoughtfully and sincerely explores themes of womanhood, family, anxiety, and identity. Tugs at the heartstrings and shows the importance of unconditional love." —Kirkus

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