Hi everyone! Today I have the immense pleasure to welcome Gail Nall to Pop! Goes The Reader as I host the exclusive cover reveal for Gail’s forthcoming contemporary middle grade novel, Out Of Tune. Scheduled to be published November 8th, 2016 by Simon & Schuster, Out Of Tune follows the story of Maya, a girl who longs to audition for the singing competition Dueling Duets, but whose dream that seems less and less likely after Maya’s parents sell their home and move the family into a RV to travel the country. Please read on learn more about this absolutely adorable middle grade novel, including an exclusive interview Gail held with the cover’s designer, Jessica Handelman, as well as an exciting opportunity to to enter to win an advance reader copy of Out Of Tune!
Gail: I love how the cover turned out! I especially adore how so much of the story is in this illustration – Maya’s singing, her crazy hair, the RV (aka Bertha the Beast), the mountains. Was this the concept from the start? Or were other ideas considered?
Jessica: First and foremost, I’m so thrilled to hear how much you love the cover. It is always nice to hear that the designer’s work is appreciated. This was the concept from the start. It is always helpful to have a manuscript or an outline of the story, which helps us to infuse the cover with as much of the story as possible. In your case, I think we had 50 pages of a manuscript and a complete outline, which was great. We passed the materials to the artist who created a sketch, which was very similar to what we wound up with for the front cover. We loved the direction from the beginning.
Gail: I love that it happened so seamlessly! One of my favorite things about this cover are the clean lines. How did you find the illustrator?
Jessica: I spent a lot of time searching for artists on the internet. Either through their websites or agents’ websites. We considered three artists, all who had a very similar style. Graphic, cute female characters, bold and bright colors. And we (editorial and design) picked Eda Kaban. We liked that she hadn’t done a ton of other covers at the time, so your cover would have a fresh look compared with what was out in the market.
Gail: It definitely looks fresh and bold. And the colors! They’re so vivid, and I love the way the title pops off the page. How did you hit upon the color scheme?
Jessica: Eda came up with the color scheme for the art. We loved all the outdoorsy-ness of the main character’s journey and wanted to highlight that with the green fields and the blue mountains and sky. I encouraged her to brighten it some. Then I worked off of those colors in designing the title type.
Gail: I think it’s just so eye-catching — and fun! Now, only because I’m curious, what are some of your favorite book covers?
Jessica: Ones that I’ve designed: I love the hardcover for 33 Minutes (I did the little illustration too!), Bad Unicorn, OCD Love Story, My Dairy From The Edge Of The World and Violent Ends.
About Gail Nall
Gail Nall lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her family and more cats than necessary. She once drove a Zamboni, has camped in the snow in June, and almost got trampled in Paris. Gail is the author of the middle grade novel, Breaking The Ice (Aladdin/S&S, 2015) and the co-author of You’re Invited (Aladdin/S&S, 2015). She is also the author of the young adult novel, Exit Stage Left (Epic Reads Impulse/HarperCollins, 2015).
Title Out Of Tune
Author Gail Nall
Pages 256 Pages
Intended Target Audience Middle Grade
Genre Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
To Be Published November 8th, 2016 by Simon & Schuster/ Aladdin M!X
Find It On Goodreads ● Amazon.com ● Chapters
When Maya’s parents sell their house and move the family into the world’s ugliest RV to travel the country, Maya’s only goal is to get back home – and fast. No way is she going to miss the chance to audition for Dueling Duets, the singing competition show that’s going to surely propel her — and her cowboy-hatted crush — to country stardom.
But Operation Maya Goes Home turns out to be more complicated than she had expected, so Maya sets out on a secret 100-mile bike ride through Yellowstone National Park with her know-it-all little sister, a cute nature-loving boy, and a blue-haired girl named Shiver (a.k.a. the most annoying person ever). Somewhere between the worst muscle ache she’s ever had and losing half of their group to a flat tire, Maya starts wondering if maybe, just maybe, it’s possible to find home in the last place you expected.
As an extra, exciting bonus, Gail has been kind enough to offer an ARC of Out Of Tune to one lucky reader! This contest is open internationally and the prize will be distributed once ARCs become available. Please fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter.