Cover Reveal: The Miraculous by Jess Redman

Hello, Jess Redman! Happy Monday! Thank you for dropping by to share the exquisite cover for The Miraculous. I spent a long time studying every detail.

Hi, Mr. Schu! Thank you so much for having me on your wonderful blog! I’m so inspired by all the work you do connecting readers with books.

I wrote the words in purple, and Jess wrote the words in black. Thank you, Jess!

Matt Rockefeller’s cover illustration for The Miraculous is beyond perfect.

When I first opened the final illustration and saw it in full color with the title and with my name, I gasped—out loud and very dramatically.

Then I just stared at it. For a long time. And when I finally closed my computer and went to do something else, I only lasted about two minutes before I came back to stare at it again.

There are so many details from the story in this cover—like the spirals on the M and S and on the DoorWay House, the just-starting-to-turn autumn leaves, the soaring bird, and Faye’s cloak streaming behind her like she has wings of her own. I love that the full illustration will wrap around to the back cover, a Miraculous panorama.

I think Matt captured, so beautifully, the darkness and the light in the story, the grief and the loneliness, the love and the joy.

Wunder Ellis is an 11-year-old miracologist.

Since he was five, Wunder has collected stories of the inexplicable and the extraordinary, recording them in his journal The Miraculous. He interviews neighbors, scours newspapers, and finds the magical in his own day-to-day.

He is an eternal optimist, a questioner, and a dreamer.

Until something very unmiraculous happens.

The Miraculous tells the story of how Wunder stops believing in miracles and magic and extraordinary things after the death of his newborn sister. Wunder is heart-broken by the loss. He leaves his miracle journal at the cemetery.

But the story, of course, doesn’t end there. Wunder meets Faye, a classmate who has just experienced a loss of her own. Faye is a cape-wearing, deadpan-stare-giving student of all things paranormal (“Ghosts, vampires, ghouls, et cetera”).

And when a mysterious old woman moves into the abandoned house by the cemetery, Faye insists that she and Wunder investigate.

The old woman—who might be a witch—needs their help. And a string of maybe-coincidences connect this maybe-witch to Wunder and to his sister.

To help the maybe-witch and to find out the secrets she’s hiding, Wunder and Faye travel through cemeteries and forests, to townhalls and police stations, by bicycle and by train, all over their town of Branch Hill and beyond. They go on a journey that connects the living to the dead and brings them face-to-face with the miraculous.

School libraries are the most direct route from kids to the resources that can grow their minds and their hopes and their hearts. I went to quite a few schools as a kid, and I remember the libraries of each one.

Libraries are powerful places because stories and knowledge are powerful. And a school library can meet every child where they are.

Story is how we create the world. We are all telling ourselves stories all the time—stories about who we are and where we’re going and what this life is about.

Throughout time, across cultures, stories can always be found. Stories connect us and teach us and change us in ways that sometimes cannot be put into words…except perhaps in another story.

I love how Flannery O’Connor puts it: “A story is a 
way to say something that cannot be said any other way.” 

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me about the spiraled house from the front cover and the white-flower tree that will be on the back cover. 

But actually—I’m glad you didn’t! 

At the heart of The Miraculous is a mystery, and the DoorWay House and the tree hold a lot of the answers to that mystery—answers that readers will have to find in the story.

Look for The Miraculous on July 30, 2019.


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