cover image Second Sleep

Second Sleep

Diane Stanley. Quill Tree, $17.99 (288p) ISBN 978-0-06-265803-6

When 12-year-old Max’s mother doesn’t come home to their New York City apartment, instead leaving a cryptic message about helping an old friend, Max’s family is thrown into disarray, suddenly missing “the sun to their planets.” While their father stays home to search for their missing mom, Max and his eight-year-old sister Rosie go with their maternal grandmother, Mozelle, to pack up the family’s rustic cabin before it is sold. The upstate cabin of their mother’s childhood lacks electricity, which changes the siblings’ sleeping pattern—the city kids now go to bed when the sun sets, awaken in the night, and then sleep again. And it is during this “second sleep” that they meet up at a nearby lake with a supportive group of kids. Max connects to another child his age, Lila, and together they realize that perhaps their friendship holds the secret to Max and Rosie’s missing mom. Filled with rich details that uphold a dreamy nostalgia, a strong core mystery, and organic growth for Max, Stanley’s (Resist! Peaceful Acts That Changed Our World) latest celebrates bonds past and present among the presumed-white characters. Ages 8–12. Agent: Marcia Wernick, Wernick & Pratt Agency. (Nov.)