Welcome to the Second Favorite Daughter’s Club, a guest post and cover reveal by Colleen Oakes
From as early as I can remember, I’ve been the Second Favorite Daughter in my family. It’s hard to explain to those who aren’t second favorite children, but if you are one, you definitely know it. This doesn’t mean your parents love you any less – my parents loved me fiercely and unconditionally – but you know that there is one child that they prefer to hang out with. In my case, it was my little sister, Cynthia. It makes sense that Cynthia is my parent’s favorite – she’s so hilarious, chill and warm. She makes everyone feel comfortable – in fact, I can understand because she’s my favorite person too. This doesn’t mean that I wasn’t annoyed to no end about it – as a teen especially.
When I was a teen, I had a strict curfew and was constantly grounded for small infractions. When she was a teen, she drove on a soccer field and had to go to court! When I asked my mother about her punishment, my mother shushed me and said, “Isn’t going to court enough?” To which I stamped my foot and said, “NO! It’s not!” This is the life of a second favorite child: one child gets an Xbox for Christmas and the other gets socks. One has their parent’s attention most of the time and the other raises themselves to an extent. It’s a reality in most families, and yet we never talk about it.
I got my idea for the Second Favorite Daughter’s Club from a conversation at the library I worked at, with my friend Santana. (I am also a librarian in my free time!). We were talking about what it’s like being second favorite daughters, and I said, “We should have a club. The second favorite daughter’s club.” A second later, it hit me like a burst of lighting: this is a killer middle-grade book idea.
I was already an author with many young adult books under my belt, but while working as a librarian, middle-grade books had really caught my attention. That day, I wrote the first chapter, about a girl named Santana who is unhappily attending her older sister’s ballet recitals, and Casey, a bookworm stuck in a family of much too-chill hippies. Together, they form a club to take down their siblings and become the first-favorite child. The Second Favorite Daughter’s Club is a deep-hearted, hilarious tale of friendship, sibling rivalry and the complicated dynamics of two-kid families.
It’s been beyond wonderful to see this book come to life with Pixel + Ink and with my wonderful editor Alison Weiss, who definitely gets what it means to be a second favorite child. The book is about family and friends and the sheer agony of being a middle-school girl. It seeks to capture those trying years when it feels like you’ll never be enough, and asks if it’s possible to cheat your way to number one.
The Second Favorite Daughter’s Club arrives in April 2024 from Pixel and Ink, and will continue with a second installation sometime later that year.
Meet the author
Colleen Oakes is the bestselling author of books for both teens and adults, including the acclaimed Queen of Hearts series, The Black Coats, the Wendy Darling series, and the upcoming Eleven Houses. Sister Sabotage is her first middle grade novel. She recently moved to Connecticut with her husband and son and is eager to explore New England. Visit her online at ColleenOakes.org or on Instagram @colleenoakes.
Pixel+Ink (@PixelandInkBks on all platforms)
About The Second Favorite Daughters Club: Sister Sabotage
A NEW CONTEMPORARY SERIES FOR THE SIBLING WHO ALWAYS COMES IN LAST Santana Barnes is tired of playing second fiddle to her ballet protégé, honor student older sister, Victoria. Casey Hammond is sick of her cute-as-a-button, adventurous little sister, Sage, who steals all of their dad’s attention.
When the girls meet in their middle school library, they learn they have a lot in common: they both love reading, they hate after-school activities, and most important, they are clearly their parents’ second-favorite children.
So they decide to do something about it. They create the Second Favorite Daughters Club. The members? Just the two of them. The mission? To become their parents’ favorites by undermining their love-hoarding siblings. But is it possible to cheat your way to number one? And is being in the spotlight really what they want?
Sister Sabotage is a celebration of friendship and family in all its challenging forms, and a reminder that there’s no one way to stand out.
Publication date: 04/02/2024
Age Range: 10-14 Years
Filed under: Guest Post
About Amanda MacGregor
Amanda MacGregor works in an elementary library, loves dogs, and can be found on Twitter @CiteSomething.
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