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Faith
Cover of Faith
Faith
Taking Flight
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From Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin', comes the first in a two-book origin story of Faith, a groundbreaking, plus-sized superhero from the Valiant Entertainment...
From Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin', comes the first in a two-book origin story of Faith, a groundbreaking, plus-sized superhero from the Valiant Entertainment...
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  • From Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin', comes the first in a two-book origin story of Faith, a groundbreaking, plus-sized superhero from the Valiant Entertainment comics.

    Faith Herbert is a pretty regular teen. When she's not hanging out with her two best friends, Matt and Ches, she's volunteering at the local animal shelter or obsessing over the long-running teen drama The Grove.

    So far, her senior year has been spent trying to sort out her feelings for her maybe-crush Johnny and making plans to stay close to Grandma Lou after graduation. Of course, there's also that small matter of recently discovering she can fly....

    When the fictional world of The Grove crashes into Faith's reality as the show relocates to her town, she can't believe it when TV heroine Dakota Ash takes a romantic interest in her.

    But her fandom-fueled daydreams aren't enough to distract Faith from the fact that first animals, then people, have begun to vanish from the town. Only Faith seems able to connect the dots to a new designer drug infiltrating her high school.

    But when her investigation puts the people she loves in danger, she will have to confront her hidden past and use her newfound gifts—risking everything to save her friends and beloved town.

About the Author-

  • Julie Murphy lives in North Texas with her husband who loves her, her dog who adores her, and her cats who tolerate her. After several wonderful years in the library world, Julie now writes full-time. When she's not writing or reliving her reference desk glory days, she can be found watching made-for-TV movies, hunting for the perfect slice of cheese pizza, and planning her next great travel adventure. She is also the author of the young adult novels Dumplin' (now a film on Netflix), Puddin', Ramona Blue, and Side Effects May Vary. You can visit Julie at www.juliemurphywrites.com.

Reviews-

  • AudioFile Magazine Narrator Joy Nash guides listeners through the intense origin story of Faith Herbert, aka Zephyr, from the graphic novels published by Valiant Comics. Seventeen-year-old Faith volunteers at the animal shelter and runs a fan blog for her favorite teen drama, "The Grove." But when the TV show relocates filming to her hometown and actress Dakota Ash's interest in her seems more than platonic, Faith can almost forget about the string of lost animals, missing people, her grandmother's descent into dementia, and her recently discovered ability to fly. Nash's narration is fueled with high energy; she adds enthusiasm to a large cast of characters, using distinct voices for each one. A heartfelt and humorous performance that expertly balances multiple plotlines. A.K.R. � AudioFile 2020, Portland, Maine
  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 20, 2020
    In the first of two origin story novelizations based on the comic book character Faith Herbert, aka Zephyr, Murphy (Dear Sweet Pea) breaks stereotypes while retaining well-established comics tropes. Seventeen-year-old Faith, who is white and fat and considers her sexual orientation “abstract,” is a superfan of long-running television show, The Grove, her love instilled by her cosplay-loving parents before their death in a car accident. When the show relocates to her small Midwestern town, Faith crosses paths with its star, 18-year-old “modern heartthrob” Dakota Ash, a half white/half Latinx lesbian. As their friendship deepens into a flirtation, Faith carries other secrets, like her grandmother’s declining health and memory and her time last summer at the Harbinger Foundation’s secret lab, where her buried powers, including flight, awakened. As people, including a popular classmate, and pets go missing and a new drug starts appearing around town, Faith finds herself pulled into a dangerous plot involving family trauma and the fumbles that come with newfound power. Murphy affectionately portrays a plus-size girl coming into her own, resulting in a character readers can root for while adding much-needed diversity, in terms of body type and sexuality, to the superhero canon. Ages 13–up. Agent: Jen Marshall, Aevitas Creative Management.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from July 1, 2020

    Gr 8 Up-Faith lives with her Grandma Lou and loves animals, running a fan site for the TV drama The Grove, and hanging out with her best friends. She's also hiding a big secret: She's a superhero. Last summer, she was not actually at camp, but imprisoned-being "activated" by evil scientists. Faith is ready to move on, focusing on school and the cute boy she's liked forever-with occasional flying practice. Then The Grove moves production to Faith's town and she rapidly becomes (more than?) friends with lead actress Dakota Ash. A mystery is afoot, with townsfolk and pets going missing, and a strange new drug circulating at school. Faith uses her new bird's eye view to do some Veronica Mars-style sleuthing. Readers of Valiant's "Faith" comics will see that character translated from a flying millennial who works at a Buzzfeed-style media outlet, to a bisexual 12th grader who writes for the school paper. Murphy knows how to build characters and evoke a sense of place. Here, she borrows from teen soaps and superhero comics in ways that turbo-charge the pace and heighten the stakes. The resulting queer, fat, superhero coming-of-age novel has enough heart to anchor the wilder plot points and to balance campiness with relatability. Some readers may feel thrown by the busy narrative, but most hijinks are handled expertly, and the plot is no more complicated than Riverdale or Spider-Man. VERDICT This #OwnVoices genre and format mashup is fun and memorable, and should produce legions of new Faith superfans.-Miriam DesHarnais, Towson Univ., MD

    Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    May 15, 2020
    A loud-and-proud fangirl finds herself living a fan's dream. Faith Herbert runs a popular blog for her main obsession--the popular show The Grove. This past summer, Faith took a chance to secretly have her latent psiot abilities activated and gained the ability to fly. She's not sure what she's meant to do with her new superheroic powers, but she's been trying to keep her "feet on the ground" as she starts her senior year. When The Grove moves its shooting location to Faith's small Minnesota town, she can't believe her luck. Then she meets, and starts hanging out with, the show's star, Dakota Ash. In the meantime, a string of local pets, homeless people, and then Faith's classmates all go missing. It's scary, but she's determined to help if she can. Faith's character is the true star here; she has a sweet disposition and genuine dedication to her friends and family. She's also good-humored, which makes moments of emotional stress, like dealing with her grandmother's emerging memory issues, all the more poignant. As in all her work, Murphy's portrayal of a plus-size protagonist is nuanced and heartfelt. Faith is blonde, white, and questioning. Dakota is biracial (white/Latinx) and lesbian. Destined for great heights. (Fiction. 13-19)

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    June 1, 2020
    Grades 9-12 Faith Herbert loves superheroes. She could happily spend hours trolling online fandom boards or swapping theories about her favorite shows and comic books with her two best friends. But despite her fervor, it does come as something of a surprise when she becomes a superhero herself. She's got the tragic backstory?her parents died when she was younger, and she's been raised by her grandma?but she hasn't seen many fat superheroes represented in mainstream media. As she works on mastering her new flying abilities in between shifts at the local pet shelter, her town is thrown into chaos as popular TV show The Grove, Faith's favorite, arrives to film there and, simultaneously, people and animals start mysteriously vanishing. As Faith navigates a new and surprising romantic connection with Dakota, one of the star actresses on the show, she also can't stop herself from investigating the disappearances. Murphy shifts gears to launch this new series, based on the Valiant Comics universe, that's body positive and deliciously keyed into fandom. Readers will flock to this inclusive romp.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Murphy's best known for Dumplin' (2015), a best-seller-turned-Netflix-movie, and this latest incorporates the body positivity of that book with the perpetual popularity of superheroes. Better have a few extra copies on hand.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

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