The New Debs: Please Welcome the Class of 2019!

This week, we take a break from our traditional Saturday Guest Author posts in order to introduce you to the new class of Debutante Ball authors! We are so excited for them to begin their tenure starting tomorrow!

Layne Fargo will be taking over the weekly News Flash.

Layne Fargo has Master’s degrees in theater and library science, which seem slightly less useless now that she writes very dramatic books. She’s a Pitch Wars mentor and a member of the Chicagoland chapter of Sisters in Crime. Her debut novel, TEMPER, will be published by Gallery Books in summer 2019. Layne lives in Chicago with her partner and their pets.

TEMPERTwo ambitious women drawn into the mind games of a manipulative director have to decide how far they’ll go when staged violence starts to draw real blood. BLACK SWAN meets LUCKIEST GIRL ALIVE in this feminist psychological thriller set in Chicago’s storefront theater scene.


Devi S. Laskar will be our new Social Media Maven.


Devi S. Laskar is a native of Chapel Hill, N.C. She holds an MFA from Columbia University in New York. A former newspaper reporter, she is now a poet, photographer and novelist. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Crab Orchard Review, Tin House, New Guard. She is an alumna of both TheOpEdProject and VONA. Finishing Line Press published two poetry chapbooks, “Gas & Food, No Lodging” & “Anastasia Maps” in 2017. Counterpoint Press will publish her debut novel, THE ATLAS OF REDS AND BLUES, in February 2019. She resides in California and has three teens (until the eldest leaves teendom shortly) and a newly adopted dog.

THE ATLAS OF REDS AND BLUES grapples with the complexities of the second-generation American experience, what it means to be a woman of color in the workplace, a sister, a wife, a mother to daughters in today’s America. Drawing inspiration from the author’s own terrifying experience of a raid on her home, the short novel explores an alternate reality that might have been.

It also has an amazing digital cover!



Martine Fournier will be the new Guest Wrangler/Instagram Manager.

Martine Fournier Watson is originally from Montreal, Canada, where she earned her master’s degree in art history after a year in Chicago as a Fulbright scholar. She currently lives in Michigan with her husband and two children. Her debut novel, THE DREAM PEDDLER, will be released April 9th, 2019, by Penguin Random House. When she is not curled up somewhere, writing, you can find Martine walking in the woods, playing Sudoku, trying to read all the books in the world, and stalking famous authors on Twitter.

The dream peddler came to town at the white end of winter, before the thaw . . .

Traveling salesmen like Robert Owens have passed through Evie Dawson’s town before, but none of them offered anything like what he has to sell: dreams, made to order, with satisfaction guaranteed.

Soon after he arrives, the community is shocked by the disappearance of Evie’s young son. The townspeople, shaken by the Dawson family’s tragedy and captivated by Robert’s subversive magic, begin to experiment with his dreams. And Evie, devastated by grief, turns to Robert for a comfort only he can sell her. But the dream peddler’s wares awaken in his customers their most carefully buried desires, and despite all his good intentions, some of them will lead to disaster.

“Astonishing . . . The Dream Peddler unfolds like a gorgeous poem, leading us deep into the lives of its characters, and exploring the vast underground legacy of our own desires. This is the must-read book of the year.” —Rene Denfeld, bestselling author of The Child Finder


K.A. “Kai” Doore will be the new Tech Deb!

Kai describes herself as a type-A Virgo mom, an extrovert, and a cat-herder. Website-building experience dating back to “ye olde days of Geocities” means that the Debs platform is in excellent hands!

Kai Doore grew up in Florida, but has since lived in lush Washington, arid Arizona, and cherry-infused Michigan.  While recovering from climate whiplash, she’s raised chickens, learned entirely too much about property assessment, photographed cacti, and developed online trainings, none of which has anything to do with – or perhaps has everything to do with – her BA in Classics.

The Perfect Assassin, TOR, 19 March 2019

The assassins of Ghadid serve a higher power, dispensing justice in the shadows. Or so Amastan has been taught. Until, unexpectedly, Amastan finds the body of a very important drum chief. Until, impossibly, fellow assassins are being killed off. Until, inevitably, Amastan is ordered to solve these murders, or else.

And that’s the least of his problems.


Stephanie Jimenez will be the new Giveaway Maven!

Stephanie Jimenez is a former Fulbright recipient. She is based in Queens, New York.

Her fiction and non-fiction has appeared in The Guardian, O! the Oprah Magazine, Entropy, Vol 1 Brooklyn, Yes! Magazine, and more.

She completed a novel-writing intensive at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity as well as the 2017 Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference for fiction.

THEY COULD HAVE NAMED HER ANYTHING (Little A, 2019) is about two teenage girls–one Latina and one white–questioning what it means to live up to the name you’ve been given and how far you’ll go for the life you’ve always dreamed of living. The story grapples with racism, class privilege, female friendship, familiar expectations, and love and lust in New York City. The novel is told in four perspectives, alternating between the 17 year old protagonist, her best friend, and their fathers.


We are so excited to turn the blog over to these amazing authors, and can’t wait for you to get to know them – and their books – better.  Thanks for an amazing year!

Author: Julie Clark

Born and raised in Santa Monica, California, Julie Clark grew up reading books on the beach while everyone else surfed. After attending college at University of the Pacific, and a brief stint working in the athletic department at University of California, Berkeley, she returned home to Santa Monica to teach. She now lives there with her two young sons and a golden doodle with poor impulse control. Her debut, THE ONES WE CHOOSE, will be published by Gallery/Simon & Schuster in May 2018.

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