So yesterday I read this online at Publisher's Weekly: "Kathy Dawson, associate editorial director, Harcourt Children's Book says, 'So I'm working on this harrowing book by Susan Beth Pfeffer called The Dead & the Gone, due out next May. It's the companion to Life
As We Knew It, about a meteor that hits the moon and knocks it closer in orbit to the earth, causing worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes and volcanoes. My assistant read it and said, "Kathy, I don't know how you can edit these books." Generally, I am happy being a pessimist, and I love apocalyptic novels. But the events in here hit very close to home. When I first read Life as a submission on the subway, I'd end up whispering, "It's not true, the world is still here… it's not true… everything's okay… it's not true…." like a mantra all the way to work. And judging from what I've heard, many readers are finding it impossible to read Life without the urge to stock up on emergency supplies. One industry blogger even coined the phrase "Pfefferitis" to describe this urge.
"And The Dead & the Gone? Well, it's set during the same period as the first book, so I thought I'd be okay since I'd already been there. But this one hits even closer to home. Where Life was set in a remote town in Pennsylvania, The Dead & the Gone is set in New York City. Here's one of the points where my heart stopped: "The mandatory evacuation of the Borough of Queens will begin on Saturday. All municipal services will end by Friday, July first.""
I can't wait!
(Full disclosure: The world of YA publishing can be kind of small, but I don't know Pfeffer at all. I don't even know anyone who knows her - do I? Tell me if you do.)