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NEW BOOK – Peppermint Cocoa Crushes by Laney Nielson

Peppermint Cocoa Crushes by Laney Nielson, Sky Pony Press (October 2017). Ages 9-12

A delightfully wonderful holiday read for tweens that hits the middle school voice right on the head. What I loved best about this book is how accurately it captures those emotions of first crushes, and feeling the pressure to like someone, even if you don’t. The naïveté is refreshing, and Sasha’s emotional development is written in such a way that readers will be able to clearly relate.

This is the second book in The Swirl series, with at least two more on the horizon for later this year, so keep your eyes open for them!



Sasha is so excited. ‘Tis the season for snow, gifts, peppermint cocoa, and the Holidaze Spectacular — the school’s variety show competition with an amazing grand prize! She and her best friends, twins Karly and Kevin, are working on a dance routine for it, and Sasha is sure they’ll win. She’s also sure that her crush — Kevin — likes her back. She just needs to find a way to tell him.

But then nothing goes as planned. Karly disappears into quiz bowl, things with Kevin are going nowhere, and Sasha’s head is spinning between rehearsals, homework, and volunteer commitments. Everything is falling apart! Can Sasha repair a friendship, figure out her crush, and still make the most of her moment in the spotlight?