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About Donna Gephart
Donna Gephart's love for libraries and reading led her to a career as an award-winning children's book author for Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, Penguin Random House and Holiday House. Her humorous, heartbreaking middle grade novels now reside on the shelves of her childhood library.
Meet fiercely determined Cleveland Rosebud Potts in Donna's latest book, THE PARIS PROJECT, where Cleveland is determined to escape her tiny town of Sassafras, Florida and move to Paris, France because she's filled with shame from her dad's recent incarceration. Will the power of family, friendship and forgiveness help Cleveland bloom where she's planted?
Look out for ABBY, TRIED AND TRUE -- a middle grade novel that will break your heart, then stitch it back together with hope and love. (Spring '21, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
Donna's first picture book, GO BE WONDERFUL, releases March '21 from Holiday House.
Grab a copy of one of Donna's other books:
1. IN YOUR SHOES -- "A unique and compelling novel from a master storyteller. Highly recommended." -- School Library Journal (starred review)
2. LILY AND DUNKIN -- A dual narrative of a big-hearted, nature-loving transgender girl and a thirteen-year-old boy with bipolar disorder, who is spiraling toward psychosis.
3. DEATH BY TOILET PAPER -- Will Ben be able to keep a promise to his recently deceased dad and save his family from eviction, using his creativity and contest skills?
4. OLIVIA BEAN, TRIVIA QUEEN -- Can Olivia overcome huge obstacles to achieve her dream of appearing on the TV quiz show Jeopardy!?
5. HOW TO SURVIVE MIDDLE SCHOOL -- David is famous online from his hilarious YouTube videos, but how will he ever survive the challenging terrain of middle school?
6. AS IF BEING 12-3/4 ISN'T BAD ENOUGH, MY MOTHER IS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT -- won the prestigious Sid Fleischman Humor Award. Can spelling bee champ Vanessa Rothrock do what's necessary to save her mom from an assassination attempt on the campaign trail?
Donna's novels have appeared on many state reading lists and won various awards. She's a popular speaker at schools, book festivals, libraries and conferences, including ALA, NCTE, the SCBWI National Conference, VCFA Retreat, the Erma Bombeck Humor Writers' Workshop, the Conference on Children's Literature and others. Visit her website for free reading guides, funny videos and more.
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Books By Donna Gephart
The critically acclaimed author of Lily and Dunkin delivers another heartfelt story that will remind readers you never know who needs a friend the most.
Miles is an anxious boy who loves his family's bowling center even if though he could be killed by a bolt of lightning or a wild animal that escaped from the Philadelphia Zoo on the way there.
Amy is the new girl at school who wishes she didn't have to live above her uncle's funeral home and tries to write her way to her own happily-ever-after.
Then Miles and Amy meet in the most unexpected way . . . and that's when it all begins. . . .
For readers who enjoyed Wonder and Counting by 7's, award-winning author Donna Gephart crafts a compelling story about two remarkable young people: Lily, a transgender girl, and Dunkin, a boy dealing with bipolar disorder. Their powerful journey, perfect for fans of Wonder, will shred your heart, then stitch it back together with kindness, humor, bravery, and love.
Lily Jo McGrother, born Timothy McGrother, is a girl. But being a girl is not so easy when you look like a boy. Especially when you’re in the eighth grade.
Dunkin Dorfman, birth name Norbert Dorfman, is dealing with bipolar disorder and has just moved from the New Jersey town he’s called home for the past thirteen years. This would be hard enough, but the fact that he is also hiding from a painful secret makes it even worse.
One summer morning, Lily Jo McGrother meets Dunkin Dorfman, and their lives forever change.
When Abby Braverman’s best friend, Cat, moves to Israel, she’s sure it’s the worst thing that could happen. But then her older brother, Paul, is diagnosed with cancer, and life upends again. Now it’s up to Abby to find a way to navigate seventh grade without her best friend, help keep her brother’s spirits up during difficult treatments, and figure out her surprising new feelings for the boy next door.
Eleven-year-old David Greenberg dreams of becoming a YouTube sensation and spends all of his time making hilarious Top 6½ Lists and Talk Time videos. But before he can get famous, he has to figure out a way to deal with:
6. Middle school (much scarier than it sounds!)
5. His best friend gone girl-crazy
4. A runaway mom who has no phone!
3. The threat of a swirlie on his birthday
2. A terrifying cousin
1. His # 1 fan, Bubbe (his Jewish grandmother)
1/2. Did we mention Hammy, the hamster who’s determined to break David’s heart?
But when David’s new best friend, Sophie, starts sending out the links to everyone she knows and her friends tell their friends, thousands of people start viewing his videos.
“A memorable, heartfelt read.” —Publishers Weekly
Fans of the Nate series by Tim Federle and The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm will love Cleveland Rosebud Potts in this poignant and heartfelt novel from the award-winning author of Lily and Dunkin.
Cleveland Rosebud Potts has a plan. If she can check off the six items on her très important Paris Project List she will make it out of the small-minded and scorching town of Sassafras, Florida, to a rich and cultured life at The American School of Paris.
Unfortunately, everything seems to conspire against Cleveland reaching her goal.
Cleveland is ashamed of her father and angry that her mother and sister are never around because they have to work extra shifts to help out the family. Her Eiffel Tower tin has zero funds. And to top it all off, Cleveland’s best friend Jenna Finch has decided she’s too fancy for her and her neighbor Declan seems to be hiding something.
As Cleveland puts her talents to the test, she must learn how to forgive family for their faults, appreciate friends for exactly who they are, and bloom where she’s planted—even if that’s in a tiny town in central Florida that doesn’t even have a French restaurant. C’èst la vie!
Olivia Bean knows trivia. She watches Jeopardy! every night and usually beats at least one of the contestants. If she were better at geography, she would try out for the show’s kids’ week. Not only could she win bundles of money, she’d get to go to the taping in California, where her dad, who left two years ago and who Olivia misses like crazy, lives with his new family. One day Olivia’s friend-turned-nemesis, Tucker, offers to help her bulk up her geography knowledge. Before Olivia knows it, she’s getting help from all sorts of unexpected sources: her almost-stepdad, super-annoying Neil; her genius little brother, Charlie; even her stressed-out mom. But will the one person she wants to impress more than anyone else show up to support her?
A Mighty Girl Best Book of the Year
When Daisy is born, Daddy says she's wonderful for crying, sleeping, and playing peek-a-boo. When she's one, Mommy says she's wonderful for banging on pots and pans in a "rock 'n' roll band."
Grandma and Grandpa say she's wonderful for saying, "Nooooooooo," when she's two. Her uncles for taking a mud bath when she's three, and her neighbor for riding her scooter all the way to the library when she's four.
Then comes the biggest milestone of all. School! It takes a village to get her there--as parents, grandparents, uncles, and neighbors escort Daisy to the door. But will Daisy be wonderful at school? Yes! She shares, makes a friend, and reaches the toilet just in time!
"I was wonderful!" Daisy shouts.
Bright colors and joyful compositions filled with humorous details depict Daisy's community of adoring family and friends.
Perfect for children entering preschool or kindergarten, for preschool graduation, or as a WONDERFUL baby shower gift. The jacket has a growth chart attached so you can measure your own child's wonderfulness.
Preschool curriculum subjects include self-esteem, growing, family, community, starting school, all about me, and blended families.
Fans of Louis Sachar will welcome the adventures of a contest-crazed seventh grader who uses his wits and way with words in hopes of winning a big cash prize to help his family avoid eviction.
Benjamin is about to lose a whole lot more than good toilet paper. If he doesn't make tons of money fast by selling candy bars and winning contests—like the Royal-T Bathroom Tissue slogan contest—his family will get kicked out of their apartment. Even with his flair for clever slogans, will Benjamin be able to win a cash prize large enough to keep a promise he made to his dad before he died? Or will he lose everything that matters to him?
Praise for Death by Toilet Paper
"Readers can't help but enjoy this heartening book about hanging in there."--Kirkus Reviews
"Ben is a character kids will root for."--Publisher's Weekly
"Would make a fine classroom readaloud."--The Bulletin
Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Abraham Lincoln . . . at one point, they all ran for president. And so is Vanessa Rothrock’s mother!
As if being 12 3/4 isn’t bad enough, Vanessa Rothrock’s mother is running for president and it’s ruining her life. Isn’t it enough that her enormous feet trip her up all the time, even on stage during the school spelling bee? Isn’t it enough that Reginald Trumball, love of Vanessa’s pathetic life, read her personal and private list of deficiencies to some boy she doesn’t even know? And that the Boob Fairy hasn’t visited her even once?! Doesn’t Mom realize that Vanessa needs her more than the rest of the country? More importantly, doesn’t she realize that she may be in grave danger? Vanessa's receiving threatening notes at school–notes that imply some psycho has it out for her mother at the Democratic National Convention. Vanessa might be the only person who can save her. But does she have the courage to do what that requires?
This hilarious debut novel about a girl who gets thrust into the campaign trail will have you laughing out loud and thanking your lucky stars that your mom never decided to enter a national election.
“Gephart maintains the humor even as the stakes rise. . . . An intelligent look at primaries, caucuses and nominating conventions.” –Publishers Weekly
“Readers learn about the political process and motivations of people who work in this milieu.” –SLJ