The Light in Everything

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The Light in Everything بقلم كاتيا بالين ... This is the story of Tom and Zofia. Tom is quiet and careful and is only just starting to feel safe, even though his dad has been in jail for nearly two years now. Zofia is the opposite. Inside her there's a storm that's always raging and it makes her want to run and shout and fight the whole world to make it give her what she wants. What she wants most is for boring, babyish scaredy cat Tom to get out of her life. And Tom can't think of anyone he likes less than loud, unpredictable Zofia. But Tom and his mum are moving into the little cottage by the sea where Zofia and her Dad live. Because Tom's mum and Zofia's dad are in love, and they're having a baby. Tom and Zofia both wish with all of their hearts that the stupid baby had never happened. But then, as Tom's mum gets more and more ill, it begins to look like their wish might come true … This is a story of learning to trust, learning to let go and diving into the unknown with hope in your heart from the author of THE SPACE WE'RE IN and OCTOBER, OCTOBER.

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كاتيا بالين كاتيا بالين

Katya Balen is co-director of Mainspring Arts, a not-for-profit that supports neurodivergent and autistic people to access creative opportunities. She studied English at university, and completed an MA researching the impact of stories on autistic children’s behaviour. When she’s not writing books or funding applications, she’s busy trying to coax her ridiculous rescue dog to go for a walk. She lives in Reading with the aforementioned dog and her partner, an NHS psychiatrist.

Her debut children’s novel The Space We’re In was published by Bloomsbury in 2019 and was selected as the Sunday Times Children’s Book of the Week as well as being shortlisted for the Branford Boase award.

Katya’s second novel, October, October, was published in 2021 to widespread acclaim and was again selected as the Times Children’s Book of the Week. In 2022, October, October scored a double victory, winning both the Yoto Carnegie Medal and the Shadowers’ Choice Award. Jennifer. Horan, Chair of Judges, praised the book’s “captivating story feature exquisite descriptions of the natural world and relationships that develop and heal” and called it “expertly written, beautiful and lyrical”. Just one week later, October, October was shortlisted for the James Cropper Wainwright Prize in the first ever Children’s Writing on Nature and Conservation category.

Since October, October‘s release, Balen has published another middle-grade novel with Bloomsbury, The Light in Everything, which was longlisted for the 2023 UKLA Book Awards. She has also written a novella, published by Barrington Stoke in July, Birdsong.

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