In the Shadow of Blackbirds

YA Fiction
Available from Amulet Books
Hardcover, ISBN 9781419705304
Paperback, ISBN 9781419710230
Audiobook available from Recorded Books

In 1918, the world seems on the verge of apocalypse. Americans roam the streets in gauze masks to ward off the deadly Spanish influenza, and the government ships young men to the front lines of a brutal war, creating an atmosphere of fear and confusion. Sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches as desperate mourners flock to séances and spiritphotographers for comfort, but she herself has never believed in ghosts. At her bleakest moment, however, she’s forced to rethink her entire way of looking at life and death, for her first love—a boy who died in battle—returns in spirit form. But what does he want from her?

Featuring haunting archival early-20th-century photographs, this is a tense, romantic story set in a past that is eerily like our own time.
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AWARDS & RECOGNITION:

• 2014 Morris Award Finalist
• A School Library Journal Best Book of 2013
• YALSA's 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults
 • 2013 Bram Stoker Award Nominee for Superior Achievement in Young Adult Fiction
YALSA's 2014 Teens' Top Ten Nominee
2013 Oregon Spirit Book Award Winner
• SCBWI 2014 Crystal Kite Member Choice Awards Finalist 
Booklist's 2013 Top 10 Horror Fiction for Youth
Booklist's 2013 Top 10 First Novels for Youth
• Starred reviews, Publishers Weekly, Booklist,
School Library Journal

• Highlighted review, VOYA Magazine
• 2014 TAYSHAS Reading List
2014 Westchester Fiction Award Winner  
• 2014-2015 Georgia Peach Book Award Nominee
• 2014 Maine Regional Library System Cream of the Crop List
TriState Young Adult Book Review’s 2014 Book of Note List
2014-2015 Florida Teen Reads Award Finalist 
• Oregon Young Adult Network Book Rave 2014 List
2015-2016 Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award Nominee
• Nominated for the ACL of Northern California's
2013 Distinguished Book List
 

2015-2016 MASL Gateway Readers Award Nominee
• Shortlisted for the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board Teen Reader’s Choice Award, Canada
2016 Rhode Island Teen Book Award Nominee 
2015-2016 South Carolina Young Adult Book Award Nominee 
October 2015 Big Library Read Selection 
2015 ALA Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults (Mysteries: Murder, Mayhem, and Other Adventures) 

REVIEWS:

★ “Winters’s masterful debut novel is an impressively researched marriage of the tragedies of wartime, the 1918 flu epidemic, the contemporaneous Spiritualism craze, and a chilling love story and mystery...
Deliciously creepy.
Publishers Weekly, starred review

Unconventional and unflinching... More than anything, this is a story of the breaking point between sanity and madness, delivered in a straightforward and welcoming teen voice.
Booklist, starred review

“Winters deftly combines mystery, ghost story, historical fiction, and romance...the story and setting are atmospheric and eerie.”
School Library Journal, starred review

“Romance fans will love Stephen's ghostly visits to Mary Shelley. Mystery lovers will enjoy the satisfactory resolution of the puzzle. Recommend this title to fans of Libba Bray's The Diviners.”
VOYA Magazine, highlighted review

“This engrossing combination of historical fiction, ghost story, psychological thriller, and straight-up whodunit moves between genres with stunning ease, maximizing the tropes of each to satisfying effect.”

“Winters strikes just the right balance between history and ghost story, neatly capturing the tenor of the times, as growing scientific inquiry collided with heightened spiritualist curiosity.
Kirkus Reviews

“[A] gorgeous production...The book’s historic setting is as much a star as the plucky Mary Shelley...
Library Journal

“Cat Winters's debut novel is creepy good... Mary Shelley, with her Boy Scout boots and penchant for aviatrix goggles, is just plain awesomely odd.”
The Boston Globe

“Winters’ words have a curious lyricism to them – a silent kind of brilliance . . . The haunting combination of a very real kind of mystery, combined with ghostly voices and the unknown of “the other side” made this novel a rare kind of war-time story, a rare kind of love story, and a rare kind of story altogether”
The Guardian

“One of the creepiest (in a good way) covers of the season! What's inside, historical Y.A. set at the time of the Spanish influenza, is equally haunting.”
The Atlantic Wire

Beautifully written and absolutely riveting.
The Statesman Journal

“The passion of first love and the paranoia of the times are realistically and movingly rendered.”
The Oregonian

“Words like ‘unputdownable’ and ‘irresistible’ are simply not enough for Cat Winters’s In the Shadow of Blackbirds. Days after finishing this story, it remains the first thought I have in the morning, and the thing that haunts me until I sleep.”
New York Times bestselling author
of The Chemical Garden trilogy

“Mary Shelley is a likable, sympathetic heroine, and through her story, teen readers will get a glimpse of a fascinating time period, made all the more real by the haunting historic photographs that pepper the novel, from soldiers in trenches to policemen in gauze masks. Part romance, part mystery and part ghost story, In the Shadow of Blackbirds makes palpable a terrifying time that brought the horror of death into the homes of millions.
BookPage

“The plot is well developed, the story is full of good research on folk remedies, spirit photographers, séances, and the horrors of losing your mind in the trenches.”
BayViews

“Cat Winters deftly captures the darkness and the light of human nature. I swear, I can smell the smoke from the flashlamps and taste the electricity in the air—this dark and startling story lingers long after the final page.”
    —Saundra Mitchell
      Edgar Award-nominated author of Shadowed Summer
and The Vespertine series

Part history, part mystery, part post-apocalyptic paranormal romance, In the Shadow of Blackbirds bundles everything in a spookily atmospheric and almost otherworldly early-twentieth-century San Diego. From the first page, I was captivated by Mary Shelley Black—by her spirit and by her capacity to love and hope amid the horrors of war and the hysteria of pandemic.
Katherine Longshore
Author of The Royal Circle series

“The unique plot continually surprises and shocks, and rich, descriptive detail brings it all vividly to life. From its first pages, one is captivated and transported into a chilling, haunted, and poignant world. Recommended with great praise.”
Historical Novels Review

TRANSLATIONS:

Czech
21848829
Published by Jota

Hungarian
23274108
Published by Scolar

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