cover image Rayne & Delilah’s Midnite Matinee

Rayne & Delilah’s Midnite Matinee

Jeff Zentner. Crown, $17.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-5247-2020-9

In Jackson, Tenn., best friends and high school seniors Josie and Delia host a public access show called Midnight Matinee. Every Friday night, their alter egos, Rayne Ravenscroft and Delilah Darkwood, screen low-budget horror films, hamming it up in comedic segments. Delia’s father left the videos behind when he abandoned the family, and she’s eager to both track him down and make the show a success. Meanwhile, Josie’s family is pressuring her to attend college and accept a television internship in Knoxville—something she’d have to quit the show to do. When the girls get a flyer to ShiverCon in Orlando, Fla., they agree to attend. If they can persuade creature-feature legend Jack Devine to help them take their show to the next level, Josie will go to college close to home. But things go awry in Orlando, and Delia learns her father is also in Florida. Zentner (The Serpent King) expertly channels the voices of two young women, one convinced she will always be left behind and one certain she is destined for greatness. Written in alternating perspectives, Zentner’s quick-witted, charming characters tackle real-life issues with snappy dialogue and engaging levity. Ages 14–up. Agent: Charlie Olsen, Inkwell Management. (Feb.)