Holy cow, guys, today’s the release day for THE CHANCE YOU WON’T RETURN! I am so freaking excited to see this book out in the world, and so freaking grateful to everyone who’s worked with me and helped me along the way–from the amazing people at Candlewick Press to my wonderful family and friends to the fantastic community of children’s and young adult writers and readers like the OneFours. You are all incredible and I’m so lucky to have you in my life.

A little about the book:

When your mom thinks she’s Amelia Earhart, navigating high school, first love, and family secrets is like flying solo without a map.

Driver’s ed and a first crush should be what Alex Winchester is stressed out about in high school – and she is. But what’s really on her mind is her mother. When did she stop being Mom and start being Amelia Earhart? Alex is increasingly worried that Amelia is planning her final flight – the flight from which she never returns. What could possibly be driving Mom’s delusions, and how far will they take her?

But you know what they say–a picture is worth a thousand words, and a gif must be worth a thousand more. So what better way to celebrate the launch of THE CHANCE YOU WON’T RETURN than with a few good gifs. If you’re looking for a book about:

The awfulness of driver’s ed:

The awesomeness of new crushes:

The intensity of family secrets:

The courage and mystery of Amelia Earhart:

And a good game of  Never-Have-I-Ever:

Check out THE CHANCE YOU WON’T RETURN, now available at your local favorite bookstore!

Annie Cardi lives outside Boston, MA, where she spends her time baking, creating alternate lyrics for tv show theme songs, and writing YA fiction. Her debut novel, THE CHANCE YOU WON’T RETURN, is forthcoming from Candlewick Press on April 22 2014. Her writing is fueled by copious amounts of coffee and chocolate.


We have a lot of fantastic debut authors at OneFour KidLit and are excited to introduce them all to you. Today, we’re kicking things off with YA writer Annie Cardi.

Annie CardiHey, you’re getting published! How’d that happen?

Crazy, right? I was the kind of person who always wrote stories. When I was young, I’d invite friends over and pressure them to play writing games with me. (Once, my mom took me aside and said maybe playing other games would be fun.) So I took creative writing classes in college and went to grad school for fiction writing, where my thesis was QUEEN OF THE AIR. I figured if I had a complete novel, I might as well do something with it and started querying agents. I also submitted my manuscript for PEN New England’s Susan P. Bloom Children’s Book Discovery Award, which recognizes unpublished children’s/YA writers. (Attention New England writers–submit to this award!) I never thought anything would come of it, but I ended up being one of the 2011 winners. One of the fantastic things about the Susan P. Bloom award is that the committee then shares your manuscript with editors at major publishing houses. Candlewick got my manuscript and ended up accepting it for publication.

What’s your debut book about? Can you share any cool details with us?

When people ask me what my book’s about, I usually say it’s about a girl whose mother thinks she’s Amelia Earhart. From the more official PW blurb: “Annie Cardi’s debut QUEEN OF THE AIR, [is] about a teenage girl struggling to balance high school, passing Drivers Ed, and a new relationship while trying to keep her mother’s progressing mental illness — delusions that she is Amelia Earhart — secret.” For me, the “secret” part is huge. We all have secrets that we carry and fear. And it’s easy to think that no one else has these burdens, but we all do to some extent.

As for cool details, I tend to create playlists for all of my projects. QUEEN OF THE AIR was heavily influenced by Arcade Fire, especially “Keep the Car Running.”

What are you most excited about in the debut process?

So far the process has been great. I’ve loved getting to know some of the 2014 authors and am psyched to be working with them on OneFour KidLit as our debut year approaches. (I’m sure everyone says their debut class is the best, but seriously–2014ers, you rock.) But I’m really looking forward to the moment my book isn’t just a Word document on my computer anymore and is officially a book I can hold and see on bookshelves and check out in libraries. (Or, you know, the e-version of all of that.) When I was in high school I’d go to the bookstore and find the C section of authors to see where my name could be. The first time I can see my name actually there will be freaking amazing.

What are your desert island books?

If I’m anticipating a long wait, I’d want books that have the perfect balance of craft and entertainment. TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD would have to be on that list, as well as THE PRINCESS BRIDE and THE GIVER. (I also know that both books hold up to multiple reads.) Although I’d want all of the His Dark Materials series, I’ll stick with THE GOLDEN COMPASS. And since I don’t think I’d be able to hunt or catch much, I’d need a copy of HOW TO COOKE EVERYTHING VEGETARIAN.

Annie Cardi lives in Brookline, MA, where she spends her time baking, creating alternate lyrics for tv show theme songs, and writing YA fiction. Her debut novel, QUEEN OF THE AIR, is forthcoming from Candlewick Press in Spring 2014. Her writing is fueled by copious amounts of coffee and chocolate.