New Kids On The Block 2019 with RuthAnne Snow

New Kids On The Block is a year-long series on Pop! Goes The Reader meant to welcome and celebrate new voices and debut authors in the literary community.

Are you a debut author whose book is being published in 2019? It’s not too late to sign-up! If you want to participate in New Kids On The Block this year, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! You can send a tweet or DM on Twitter to @Pop_Reader or email me at [email protected]. I would love to collaborate with you!

About RuthAnne Snow

RuthAnne Snow was born and raised in Kaysville, Utah. She was a sorority girl in college and social activities director in law school ― which was a lot like being back in the sorority. She loves traveling, watching horror movies, and baking. She lives in Salt Lake City with her husband and dogs. When The Truth Unravels is her first novel. RuthAnne is represented by Maria Vicente of P.S. Literary.

Author Links: WebsiteTwitterInstagramFacebookGoodreads

Nine YA Best Friendships You’ll Want To Join

When The Truth Unravels focuses on four very different teenage girls in the aftermath of a near-tragedy. Despite being best friends for years, Jenna, Ket and Rosie didn’t see Elin’s recent suicide attempt coming. They have their theories, their suspicions, and their assumptions, but none of them know why — except Elin. Now they’re heading to prom together and before the night is over, the truth is coming out.

I knew from the first line I wrote that I wanted this to be a friendship book. Specifically, I wanted it to be a friendship book that refuted an insidious line that I have heard so many times throughout my life:

Women can be each others’ worst enemies.

I just don’t think that’s true; at least, not true enough to merit the number of times I’ve heard it in my life, whether someone was warning me about high school queen bees or senior female colleagues at work. Saying that women can be mean to other women is sort of like saying that The sky is gray sometimes. It’s technically true, but is it truer than The sky is usually blue?

Or put it another way: how often have you heard men and boys commiserate with each other that, “Gosh, guys sure can be jerks to other guys sometimes”? You don’t. And that’s because when men do something, it’s “normal.” When men and boys behave badly to each other, no one feels the need to comment on it.

But for whatever reason, we constantly feel the need to warn women and girls about women and girls, perpetuating the idea that women and girls are in competition with each other. When most of the time — not all of the time, but most of the time — a girl’s best ally is going to be another girl.

Jenna, Ket, Rosie, and Elin don’t always get along. They bicker, they snap, they keep secrets and get offended. Not because they’re girls — because they’re human. Because they’re human, they also take care of each other, watch out for each other, and make each other laugh. At the end of the day, they’re going to save each other.

I didn’t meet my best friends until college and law school, but once I did meet them, it changed my life permanently. We’ve been through good times and bad. And yes, some of them are guys — really great guys. But most of them are women.

Because we’re not in competition with each other. We’re saving each other.

Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t always that way for me. I had friends in high school, but not the sort of bone-deep friendships that it seemed like everyone around me already had. Sometimes I wondered if there was something wrong with me. Sometimes I felt really lonely, even when I wasn’t alone.

I hope teen readers know that if they don’t have that lifelong friend yet, he or she is out there waiting to meet them. And like Jenna, Ket, Rosie, and Elin, those friends won’t be perfect people, but they are going to make your life infinitely better.

And in the meantime, here are 9 fictional best friendships you can borrow for awhile:

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Vivian knows that she’s a feminist. Her best friend Claudia? Not so much. But when Vivian makes a new friend in Lucy, one who shares her feminist ideals, she doesn’t leave Claudia in the dust. Vivian starts making a stand against sexism in her high school with Lucy at her side, and she doesn’t treat Claudia badly just because Claudia doesn’t get it at first. By the end of Moxie, all three girls are friends and they’ve even made feminist allies in unexpected classmates.

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Grace, Rosina, and Erin may have just barely met, but they’re united in their desire to get justice for Lucy Moynihan, a girl who accused some popular boys of rape and was run out of town. There’s nothing like a little righteous fury to bring ladies together. The Nowhere Girls will make you rage and despair, but also glory in the newfound friendship between Grace, Rosina, and Erin — and the positive change that friendship had on other girls around them.

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Mercedes may be hiding a lot of secrets from her religious best friend Angela – including the fact that she hates her nickname Mercy and that she’s made a practice of de-virginizing guys at their school. But when Mercedes finds herself in a bad situation, Angela has her back. In the end, Angela accepts Mercedes for who she really is and not who she is pretending to be.

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Reagan and Victoria may seem like polar opposites, but they have one very important goal in common: they want to head off to college together. But before too long, the girls realize the future they envisioned together may not be what they still want. What I love so much about Just Visiting it that even when they’re fighting, Reagan and Victoria stay friends — because that is what real friendship looks like.

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I am struggling to summarize the friendship between Maddie and Julie. Suffice it to say, the last time I read this book was over a year ago and I’m sitting here, getting misty-eyed just thinking about it.

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Felicity is crashing her former bestie Johanna’s wedding in hopes of advancing her non-existent medical career. Johanna is tentatively pleased to see Felicity but waiting for the other shoe to drop. What makes the friendship between Felicity and Johanna so compelling is the fact it’s our beloved narrator who has to learn that she — not Johanna — is the cause of the dissolution of their original friendship. Watching Felicity and Johanna mend fences, make a new friend in Sim, and take on the 18th century patriarchy is a total delight.

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I didn’t realize I needed a 19th century Thelma and Louise until I found Under A Painted Sky. Samantha is a Chinese-American whose dreams of becoming a professional violinist are dashed after a series of tragedies. Annamae is a runaway slave. The two girls end up disguising themselves as boys and heading west along the Oregon Trail. This books is thrilling, touching, and has a welcome dash of romance, but the key feature is always the blossoming friendship between Samantha and Annamae.

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Frey, Ovie, Juniper, and Runa are hired killers who decide to take down the unstoppable monster that is ravaging a nearby town for the fame and fortune — and the chance for new lives. This female-centric Beowulf is atmospheric like you wouldn’t believe, and the friendship between the girls is dazzling.

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Rome, Lux, and Mercy are from Cottonwood Hollow, a town where every girl has a magical ability. The action kicks off when Rome discovers that the town’s girls weren’t cursed by the Cottonwood Hollow’s founding mother — that in fact their magical abilities were always intended to be a gift bestowed on a woman who has hidden her most valuable possessions somewhere for a future girl to find. The hunt for treasure may drive the action, but it’s friendship between the girls that will stick with you.

So there you have it! Four contemporaries, three historicals, one historical fantasy, and one contemporary fantasy, all featuring stellar, supportive, realistic friendships between girls. And just in case you’ve already read these nine, add Lillian Clark’s Immoral Code (February 19, 2019) and Katy Loutzenhiser’s If You’re Out There (March 5, 2019) to your TBR lists! I won’t tease you with details about books I’ve been lucky enough to read before their release dates, but trust me anyway. And happy reading!

Title When The Truth Unravels
Author RuthAnne Snow
Pages 312 Pages
Intended Target Audience Young Adult
Genre Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
Publication Date January 8 2019 by Sky Pony
Find It On GoodreadsAmazon.comChaptersThe Book Depository

Last month, Elin tried to kill herself.

She knows she’s lucky that her parents found her in time. Lucky to be going to prom with her three best friends, like any other teen. Like it never happened. And if she has anything to say about it, no one but her best friends will ever know it did.

Jenna, Rosie, and Ket will do anything to keep Elin’s secret — and to make sure it never happens again. That’s why they’re determined to make prom the perfect night. The night that convinces Elin that life is worth living.

Except, at prom, Elin goes missing.

Now it’s up to her friends to find her. But each of the girls has her own demons to face. Ket is being blackmailed by an ex. Rosie is falling in love for the first time. And Jenna…

Jenna is falling apart.

And no one, not even her best friends, knows why.

Heart-wrenching and utterly impossible to put down, When The Truth Unravels follows four friends as they confront their greatest hopes and darkest secrets in one life-changing night.

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