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Meg McKinlay. Candlewick, $15.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-7636-6126-7

A poetic sensibility shines through this coming-of-age mystery from McKinlay (Duck for a Day), first published in Australia. Twelve-year-old Cassie feels like a fifth wheel in her family, having been born eight years after her older siblings. Cassie was also the first baby born in the Australian town of New Lower Grange, which was established after the intentional flooding of the previous town to accommodate a dam. Cassie swims six laps every day at the local pool to keep her lungs strong (she was born eight weeks early), but she feels the pull of the forbidden lake above Old Lower Grange. There, she is joined by Liam, a classmate whose life was altered in a tragic accident, and together they search for the truth about the town’s past as its centenary celebration approaches. The weight of personal history hangs over McKinlay’s story, and she strongly evokes the claustrophobia of a small town where well-meaning people all know each other’s business. There’s also a very real sense of excitement and danger as Cassie tries to unearth the lake’s secrets, making her triumph all the sweeter. Ages 9–12. (May)