Girls get Gutsy in new series from Second Story
November 28, 2008 | 5:50 PM | By Danielle Ng-See-Quan
There’s American Girl, there’s Gossip Girl, and now Second Story Press is introducing Gutsy Girl, a YA fiction series inspired by author Susan Glickman’s fall 2008 title Bernadette and the Lunch Bunch.
“They’re stories about girls who confront the world in wonderful and energetic and brave ways,” says Second Story president and publisher Margie Wolfe. “The idea is to inspire the readers to show that the world is truly open to them, and all they have to do is work for it.”
Though Bernadette and the Lunch Bunch was conceived and published as a standalone novel, Wolfe felt there was more there to capitalize on. The series won’t always feature the same characters, says Wolfe, but some may recur, and several different authors have been lined up to pen the books.
The first Gutsy Girl selection, which will be published next spring, is Home Free by Sharon Jennings, a story set in 1960s small-town Ontario about a girl named Lee who is “a bit of a loner and has a huge passion for Anne of Green Gables and loves the whole notion of being an orphan,” says Wolfe. When Cassandra – an actual orphan who has just been adopted – moves in across the street, Lee learns that the reality is a lot different from the fantasy.
The Gutsy Girl idea follows in the vein of Second Story’s Kids’ Power series, which was launched in fall 2007 and focuses on youth activism. Wolfe says the Kids’ Power series has been well received abroad, with international publishers purchasing several installments of the series at once, instead of just individual titles. Wolfe says the international marketplace is where one tends to find an audience for this type of series. “What we found with publishers when we told them about this Gutsy Girl series – everyone got a big smile on their faces,” says Wolfe. “They knew there wasn’t going to be another series out there [like it].”