From the critically-acclaimed author of Under a Painted Sky and Outrun the Moon and founding member of We Need Diverse Books comes a powerful novel about identity, betrayal, and the meaning of family.

Stacey Lee

Stacey Lee is an award-winning author of historical and contemporary young adult fiction. A native of Southern California and fourth-generation Chinese American, she graduated from UCLA, then got her law degree from UC Davis King Hall. After practicing law in Silicon Valley for several years, she finally took up the pen because she wanted the perks of being able to nap during the day, and it was easier than moving to Spain.

Stacey dreamed of writing books for a living since she was nine, when she penned her first children’s novel. Now, she’s the acclaimed author of The Secret of a Heart Note, Under a Painted Sky, and Outrun the Moon, which won the PEN Center USA Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction. She also contributed to The Radical Element, an anthology of daredevils, debutantes and other dauntless girls, edited by Jessica Spotswood. Her work has earned the Asian Pacific American Library Association Literature Award, and The SCBWI Crystal Kite Award, and they are listed among the American Library Association’s Best Fiction for Young Adults, The Kirkus Review’s Best YA Books, the Amelia Bloomer List, and The New York Library’s Top Ten YA Books. She lives with her family outside of San Francisco.

A vivid, nontraditional western…with plenty of twists…Growing romantic undertones with hints of uncertain sexuality add bonus interest to a story that distinguishes itself by integrating strands of Chinese lore and wisdom, Christianity, and music with themes of friendship, diversity, and survival.
— Publishers Weekly
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Talks and Topics

  • Under a Painted Sky: How to Survive the Wild West When You’re Young, Broke, and Chinese (Oh, and a Girl)

  • Outrun the Moon: When the World Shakes and You’re Standing At the Bottom

  • The Downstairs Girl: How One Girl Changes the World By Only Whispering

  • The Secret of a Heart Note: Your Nose Always Knows But Your Mother’s Usually Right

  • Where Are All the Mirros in Children’s Literature, and Other Questions You Never Thought To Ask

  • Tension, Conflicts and Stakes, Oh My! How to Ratchet These Three Key Elements to Create Your Best Page Turner

  • How Small Voices Can Make Loud Echoes

Lee creates characters full of depth and nuance that seem historically accurate but still relatable to today’s teens. . . . . A diverse, engaging historical fiction that should not be missed.
— School Library Journal

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