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Four starred reviews!

"Powerful.... Johnson writes about the long shadows of the past with such ambition that any reader with a taste for mystery will appreciate the puzzle Candice and Brandon must solve." -- The New York Times Book Review

When Candice finds a letter in an old attic in Lambert, South Carolina, she isn't sure she should read it. It's addressed to her grandmother, who left the town in shame. But the letter describes a young woman. An injustice that happened decades ago. A mystery enfolding its writer. And the fortune that awaits the person who solves the puzzle.

So with the help of Brandon, the quiet boy across the street, she begins to decipher the clues. The challenge will lead them deep into Lambert's history, full of ugly deeds, forgotten heroes, and one great love; and deeper into their own families, with their own unspoken secrets. Can they find the fortune and fulfill the letter's promise before the answers slip into the past yet again?



About the Author

Varian Johnson

Varian Johnson is the author of four novels, including THE GREAT GREENE HEIST, a Publishers Weekly Best Summer Book of 2014. His novels for older readers include MY LIFE AS A RHOMBUS, named to the Texas Library Association Tayshas High School Reading List and the New York Public Library "Stuff for the Teen Age" list, and SAVING MADDIE, a Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Book.

Varian was born in Florence, South Carolina, and attended the University of Oklahoma, where he received a BS in Civil Engineering. He later received an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. Varian now lives outside of Austin, TX with his family.



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