ALL FOUR STARS is a finalist for One Book, One Denver!

ALL FOUR STARS by Tara Dairman coverI received some exciting news this morning: All Four Stars is a finalist for the Youth One Book, One Denver program–along with two other books I *love*, Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman and The Secret of Ferrell Savage by J. Duddy Gill!

The Secret of Ferrell Savage by Jennifer Duddy GillYouth One Book, One Denver is a fantastic summer reading program that provides books to kids all over Denver and gives participants a chance to interact with the featured book’s author at various public events.

Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman
The winning book will be chosen by vote, which is open to the public until November 20. Anyone can vote (though extra props if you’re a Denver public school student!). Any of these books would be an excellent choice, and I’m very much looking forward to the programming next summer, whether All Four Stars is the featured book or not.

You can VOTE HERE – thank you!

Want personalized books for the holidays?

All Four Stars by Tara Dairman CoverIs there someone in your life who would love a Gladys Gatsby book, personalized and signed by the author, for the holidays?

If so, you’re in luck. I’m pleased to announce that I’m teaming up with my local independent bookstore, Boulder Book Store, to make it easy for you to get exactly that!

Ordering is simple: Just go to the Boulder Book Store website and choose the books you want. When you reach the checkout page, all the way at the bottom will be a field called “Order comments.” Just write in that field which book(s) you would like personalized, and to whom. Boulder Book Store will then call me up and I’ll pop into the store and personalize the books for you before they ship!

Stars of SummerYou can also reach the store by phone at 303-447-2074.

There is no extra charge for this service–I’m happy to do it. Books make great gifts, and I’m thrilled to partner with an independent bookstore that has been so supportive of my career as an author. Read deliciously this holiday season!


We’ve got winners!

Thanks so much to everyone who helped celebrate the cover and title reveal for Stars So Sweetthe third volume in the All Four Stars series. Your enthusiastic comments, Tweets, Facebook posts, and e-mails really made this author’s week!

(As did the package I received in the mail yesterday from my publisher, containing these beauties. Great timing, because now I can ship two off to the winners right away!)

ARCs of STARS SO SWEET by Tara Dairman


So now, without further ado, the two randomly selected winners of signed advance copies of Stars So Sweet are… jpetroroy and LMcCJ! Congratulations, and read deliciously!

I wish that I had enough advance copies to share with everyone who wants to read them. Rest assured that there will be some more giveaways as the publication date gets closer, and I’ll make sure to post about them here and on my Twitter and Facebook pages.

In the meantime, here’s a list of some of my favorite recent middle-grade reads. If you read one of these books and enjoy it, make sure to let me know!



Cover reveal & giveaway: STARS SO SWEET!

NOTE: The ARC giveaway is now closed, and winners have been announced. Thank you for entering!

Hey there! Guess what you’ll be able to find on…Sale

…next summer?

Hint: This young restaurant critic is involved.

And so is a visitor from a certain European city…French treats

Give up? Okay–reveal time!
STARS SO SWEET by Tara Dairman

Stars So Sweet

an All Four Stars book, coming July 19, 2016!
ISBN-13: 978-1-101-99648-5

Summer is winding down, and Gladys Gatsby’s stomach is full of butterflies about starting middle school. But her concerns go beyond juggling schoolwork and losing touch with old friends; she also has to worry about looming deadlines from her undercover job as the New York Standard’s youngest restaurant critic.

When her editor pushes for a face-to-face meeting, Gladys knows she must finally come clean to the grown-ups in her life about her job. Her perfectly planned reveal is put on hold, though, when her parents arrive home with a surprise: Gladys’s aunt Lydia—one of the only adults who knows her secret—fresh off a plane from Paris. Gladys and Aunt Lydia try one last ruse to fool her editor at the Standard, but for how long will Gladys be able to balance the drama of middle school with her secret life?

This third book in the delicious All Four Stars series sees Gladys facing her biggest challenge yet: being true to herself and honest with her friends and family, regardless of what those around her think.


Huge thanks to the Penguin Young Readers design team, and as always to brilliant cover artist Kelly Murphy, who has captured Gladys so perfectly in this cover!


You can now preorder Stars So Sweet from the following vendors:

Penguin *  AmazonBook Depository (International)

…and it should be available from many more retailers within the next month. Please consider supporting your local independent bookstore (find one here) by preordering the book from them. And, of course, if you’re in Colorado or New York, I hope to see you at a launch event next summer!

And you can add Stars So Sweet to your to-read shelf on GoodReads!

Giveaway alert!

TWO lucky commenters on this post will win their choice of either a signed hardcover of The Stars of Summer OR an advance copy of Stars So Sweet.

Leave a comment on this post if you’d like to enter, and you can earn extra entries by signing up for my e-mail newsletter and/or by tweeting about the giveaway.

Here’s a sample tweet you can use:

Check out the cover for STARS SO SWEET, third book in ‘s ALL FOUR STARS series, & win an ARC! 

Just let me know in your comment if you’ve signed up for the newsletter (either now or in the past) and/or tweeted. And feel free to share this cover far and wide. I hope you love it as much as I do!

The book can be sent to a mailing address in the USA or Canada. I’ll announce a winner one week from today, on Thursday, November 5.

Help “Complete the Cahills”!

Friends, if you’d like to start your Monday off with a good deed (and quite possibly a misty eye), please check out my brother- and sister-in-law’s beautiful video and inspiring story. They *both* survived cancer before the age of 32 and are now seeking to adopt. They are honestly two of the very best people I know, and are going to make incredible parents.

If you have the time to help share their story on social media and/or can find a few dollars to support them, I know that everyone who loves Matt and Heidi would be so grateful. Thank you!

Direct link to Matt & Heidi’s YouCaring crowdfunding site: Complete the Cahills: Help Dual Cancer Survivors Adopt

Fresh raves for THE STARS OF SUMMER!

Stars of SummerI’m so pleased to share two terrific new reviews for The Stars of Summer.

First, it’s been named an “Editor’s Pick” over at Honolulu Family Magazine, which features it in their “5 Great Books for Kids” article. They are also giving away a copy.

And Kiwi Magazine has named it one of their new summer reading favorites, saying “This fast-paced book is full of surprises and likable characters who quickly learn not to judge a (cook)book by its cover.” Thank you for the lovely write-up!

In other news, the good folks at Penguin have designed a beautiful PDF version of the discussion guide for All Four Starsperfect to print out for your classroom, library group, or book club. You can find it linked here on my “Teachers, Librarians, & Book Clubs” page or on the Penguin Young Readers website.

The title and cover reveal for the third book in the All Four Stars series will be coming soon, and my newsletter subscribers will get an exclusive first peek at it. You can sign up here if you haven’t already–thanks!

And happy final days of summer!

Book recommendations!

I recently Skyped with a terrific book club in Massachusetts, and the members asked me to recommend some other middle-grade novels that they might enjoy. I ended up putting a list together and e-mailing it to them, and since this isn’t the first time I’ve had a question like this, I thought that I’d share it here as well so that I can easily refer people to it in the future.

Of course, once I got started, I thought of more and more books I wanted to include, and I had to stop somewhere. So please don’t consider this a comprehensive list by any means…but I do wholeheartedly recommend every single one of these titles and hope you’ll check them out. Here we go!

Nooks & Crannies by Jessica LawsonMind-bending mysteries:
Nooks & Crannies by Jessica Lawson
Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman

Laugh-out-loud funny books:
Hook’s Revenge by Heidi Schulz
The Only Thing Worse than Witches by Lauren Magaziner
Remarkable by Lizzie Foley
The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex

Unputdownable historical fiction:
Katerina’s Wish by Jeannie Mobley
When Audrey Met Alice by Rebecca Behrens (actually a mix of contemporary and historical!)
The Sound of Life and Everything by Krista Van Dolzer

When Audrey Met Alice by Rebecca Behrens

Madcap NYC-set adventures:
At Your Service by Jen Malone
Better Nate than Ever by Tim Federle (which is also LOL funny!)

Tasty foodie books:
Cupcake Cousins (and sequels) by Kate Hannigan
It’s Raining Cupcakes (and sequels) by Lisa Schroeder

Deliciously creepy books:
Mothman’s Curse by Christine Hayes
The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy by Nikki Loftin
Grave Images by Jenny Goebel
Doll Bones by Holly Black
Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Nightingale's Nest by Nikki LoftinFabulous fairy-tales:
Grounded by Megan Morrison
A Nearer Moon by Melanie Crowder
Nightingale’s Nest by Nikki Loftin
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente (best title ever, no?)

Wonderful contemporary stories:
Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Rhyme Schemer by K.A. Holt (an excellent novel in verse)

What are your recent favorite middle-grade reads? Feel free to share more recommendations in the comments.