BISHOP'S CORNER: Queer YA Panel

Thursday, June 20, 2024 - 6:30pm

Join us on June 20 for a Queer YA Panel to celebrate the release of Rebecca Podos's newest book, Furious.

Rebecca will be joined by local author S.J. Taylor (Being Ace) and West Hartford native, Ryan La Sala (The HoneysBeholder). The panel will be moderated by upcoming debut author, Taylor Grothe (Hollow, out 2025).

Come listen to these incredible authors talk about their books and writing stories starring queer kids. After the discussion, there will be time for an audience Q & A.

All authors will be signing books after the panel.

When: June 20, 2024 at 6:30 PM
Where: Bishop's Corner Senior Center
15 Starkel Road, West Hartford


RSVPs REQUESTED: Click here to let us know you're coming!

Want to read the books before hand? Click on the covers below to order your copies!
If you would like to pick up your books at the event, please include that in the order comments.


ABOUT THE BOOKS & AUTHORS

FURIOUS by Jamie Pacton and Rebecca Podos

There's nothing more thrilling than being behind the wheel when the flag drops, a stretch of track ahead and her foot on the gas. Racing is in Jojo's blood. Or at least . . . it was.

Jojo Emerson-Boyd should be on the fast track to her own wildly successful racing career. Instead, she's spending the seemingly endless summer working at her grandmother's auto shop in the small town of Dell's Hollow. Everything changed when Jojo lost her mom, a celebrity NASCAR racer, in a tragic racing accident. Now, according to her dad, even getting her license is out of the question, so she might as well forget about racing. For the first time, her future seems foggy. But something comes into focus when Eliana "El" Blum turns up at the shop with an adorable scowl, a tough-girl vibe, and a mystery to solve.

A Motorcyle Girl™ at heart, El grew up on the sidelines of the motocross circuit, watching Maxine, her idol of an older sister, compete. When she suddenly loses all contact with Max, El won't give up until she's found. She's determined to follow Max's trail of clues, the first of which leads straight to the auto shop and to Jojo.

Jojo and El form a quick bond, and their relationship only deepens as they investigate Max's disappearance together. Falling for each other feels effortless—El the steady, measured pace to Jojo's fast lane. Impromptu road trips, heists, street races, and ever heightening stakes that feel ripped from a Fast & Furious movie test their resolve and the strength of their relationship. When the final laps of their search reveal surprising emotional truths, they'll have to trust each other and confront the grief woven into their complicated families if they hope to chase down their dreams.

REBECCA PODOS is the Lambda Literary Award-winning author of YA novels, including The Mystery of Hollow PlacesLike WaterThe Wise and the Wicked, and From Dust, a Flame. She is a co-editor of the YA romance anthology Fools in Love and has a short story featured in the collection At Midnight. By day, she's an agent at the Rees Literary Agency in Boston and can be found on her website Rebeccapodos.com.

JAMIE PACTON is an award-winning author. Her YA contemporary books include Lucky Girl and The Life and (Medieval) Times of Kit Sweetly. Her YA fantasy novels include The Absinthe Underground and The Vermilion Emporium. Currently, she lives in Wisconsin with her family. Find her at www.jamiepacton.com or @jamiepacton on Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter.


"The Witch of Festa Falls" by S.J. Taylor from BEING ACE 

A historical fantasy steeped in Norwegian folklore. Birga's beloved cousin came to the woods for peace and healing. Instead, she was drowned by a frightening monster. When the monster appears in the woods again outside the village, luring away more girls with treacherously beautiful violin song, Birga sets out alone to face him... and avenge her cousin's death.

Being Ace is a first of its kind anthology, featuring 14 stories by ace authors. Whether adventuring through space, outsmarting a vengeful water spirit, or surviving haunted cemeteries, no two aces are the same in these unique works that highlight asexual romance, aromantic love, and identities across the asexual spectrum.

S.J. TAYLOR writes stories steeped in folklore and magic, where young protagonists tackle big adventures and bigger questions. Although she grew up in Arizona’s desert, her heart yearns for the Nordic lands. When she’s not writing, she can often be found knitting yet another sweater (sweater weather is the best weather). She lives with her family in Connecticut. Visit her at SJTaylorbooks.com.


THE HONEYS by RYAN LA SALA

 

Mars has always been the lesser twin, the shadow to his sister Caroline's radiance. But when Caroline dies under horrific circumstances, Mars is propelled to learn all he can about his once-inseparable sister who'd grown tragically distant.

Mars's genderfluidity means he's often excluded from the traditions -- and expectations -- of his politically-connected family. This includes attendance at the prestigious Aspen Conservancy Summer Academy where his sister poured so much of her time. But with his grief still fresh, he insists on attending in her place.

What Mars finds is a bucolic fairytale not meant for him. Folksy charm and sun-drenched festivities camouflage old-fashioned gender roles and a toxic preparatory rigor. Mars seeks out his sister's old friends: a group of girls dubbed the Honeys, named for the beehives they maintain behind their cabin. They are beautiful and terrifying -- and Mars is certain they're connected to Caroline's death.

But the longer he stays at Aspen, the more the sweet mountain breezes give way to hints of decay. Mars’s memories begin to falter, bleached beneath the relentless summer sun. Something is hunting him in broad daylight, toying with his mind. If Mars can't find it soon, it will eat him alive.