July 2009 Indie Next List
“Gianna's family is definitely quirky. Dad runs a funeral parlor out of the basement, mom is a health-food freak, her brother is a budding paparazzo, and Nonna doesn't remember where she's left her teeth. This is a warm and wonderful family story with a whole lot of heart.”
— Jennifer Laughran, Books Inc., San Francisco, CA
In the mountains of rural Vermont, fall is a season of beauty and transformation . . . but not for Gianna Z. With less than one week to collect twenty-five leaves for a science project, her spot at cross-country sectionals is in serious peril. Plus with a dad who runs a funeral parlor out of the basement, a grandma who keeps losing her teeth, and a rival trying to steal her spot on the team, Gee just wishes life could leave her alone to finish her project. But when Nonna disappears one afternoon, suddenly some things seem more important than projects and races.
Gianna Z. will have readers rooting for her-and maybe even for science projects-from the very first page of this funny and poignant novel about family, friendship, and being true to yourself.
About the Author
Kate Messner is a debut author on Walker's list. She has a picture book and a chapter book series both scheduled for publication in 2010. She teaches junior high in Plattsburgh, New York, where she lives with her husband and two children.