Katie McCabe Series Header
Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Top Picks

the Wishing Shelf Book Awards
Silver Medal: Books for Teenagers

Black Chateaux’s The BookFest Award (FALL)
1st Place: Juvenile Fiction—Family
1st Place: Juvenile Fiction—Social Themes
2nd Place: Juvenile Fiction—Girls & Women

Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award
Judges' Top Pick: Best Juvenile/Young Adult Fiction

☆ ☆ ☆ A BookTrib Lit Picks (First Chapters from the Hottest Books) Selection: Holiday/Winter 2023 ☆ ☆ ☆

IndieReader Approved (4.5/5)

Rain Falling on Embers by Liana Gardner (paperback)

Juvenile Fiction
Hardcover: 9781645480891—October 3, 2023
Paperback: 9781645480907—Release Date TBA


How do you survive the worst thing that can ever happen?

“[With] flawed, fascinating people young readers will relate to and care about, Gardner offers enticing reasons to follow on their paths in future series entries.” ~Booklife Review by Publishers Weekly, Editor’s Pick

When Katie McCabe’s dad gets sick and is hospitalized, she’s sent to live with her uncle in a strange town. But within days of arriving, her dad unexpectedly dies.

Struggling with her new reality, Katie is lost. She doesn't fit in at her new home and never will.

It only gets worse when Katie starts her freshman year of high school and begins to have run-ins with the son of the man who owns the town—a powerful man with ties to her family’s past.

Then one day, she is attacked from behind. Blindfolded and slung across the back of a horse, Katie is taken up into the hills. Dumped in the middle of the wilderness in an oncoming storm, she is left to find her way home. But how will she survive?

“A gritty, character-led, YA novel with a relatable and easy to root for protagonist. A SILVER MEDAL WINNER and highly recommended!”
~The Wishing Shelf Book Awards




How do you find happiness when you've lost
everything you've ever known?

After a harrowing ordeal of being lost in the hills and stalked by predatory creatures, Katie McCabe must deal with her anger toward Denton, the town bully, who left her in the middle of nowhere for days to survive alone.

With her world falling apart, things appear to take a turn for the better when Katie’s best friend visits, until she learns he’s running from the law. To make matters worse, her friendship with Logan causes tension and she might have to take sides between them.

Katie has bigger problems though as Denton wants nothing more than to pay her back for having him arrested, but she’s not backing down. When he catches Katie alone, the only question is—who will be left standing.


How do you make the right decision when everything is going wrong?

What do cheerleading tryouts, Sunday afternoon court judgements, and a book burning have in common? Katie McCabe is back in action.

After her nemesis Denton is found guilty and sentenced to community service, Katie wants to believe her troubles are over, but Denton won’t rest until he gets revenge.

When blackmail rears its ugly head, she’s caught between friends and enemies putting her growing relationship with Logan at stake. Books go up in flames and Katie’s world rains down in tatters.


How do you run from your troubles when you take them wherever you go?

Katie McCabe is certain she’s ruined the lives of everyone she knows, so she sneaks out of her house and heads down the road in search of the next bus stop.

When she gets to the big city, she doesn’t have an ID to book a motel room and doesn’t know how to deal with life on the streets—until a teenager comes to her rescue and gives her a safe place to stay.

As Katie tries to figure out what to do next, she’s being stalked by a killer who wants add to her to his collection.

Click the images to open sell sheet.

Rain Falling on Embers (Katie McCabe, Book 1) Information Sheet
South of Happy (Katie McCabe, Book 2) Information Sheet
Going Up in Flames (Katie McCabe, Book 3) Information Sheet
Down to Mercy (Katie McCabe, Book 4) Information Sheet

Praise for Rain Falling on Embers (Katie McCabe, Book 1)

“The strength of this story is in the emotional intensity and complexity of Katie’s painful journey of self-discovery. The author explores the turbulent teen years masterfully, examining numerous themes that will surely resonate with young readers, including bullying, dealing with grief and loss, first love, and finding one’s place in the world.
Additionally, Gardner does a good job of capturing the personality of a 13-year-old, particularly through the deft use of first-person POV.” ~Kirkus

“Gardner’s hero is more realistic than good, and readers will be drawn to the raw truth of her struggles.”
~Children's Literature

“[Rain Falling on Embers] will keep kids reading and talking. It does an admirable job of balancing heavy topics with a dash of humor and a big dose of adventure.” ~IndieReader (4.5/5)

“This captivating tale of human endurance is a wonderful read for both young and old.” ~Booktrib

“Kids ages 9-12 will find in Katie a rebellious spirit that masks an underlay of grief and growth, and will relish her ability to survive new circumstances and demands for different reactions to life.” ~Midwest Book Review

“What might seem like a typical troubled teen story turns into something unique and unexpected. The book has a great climax, and readers won’t see it coming.” ~Los Angeles Book Review

“A realistic, heartfelt, and serious drama the likes of which I’ve never seen in middle-grade fiction before.”
~K.C. Finn, USA Today Bestselling author

“This realistic, heartfelt drama is something many readers will relate to.”~L.A. Splash Magazine

“An intriguing start of a series about a young teen and her journey as she navigates personal loss, a new family, and even newer enemies.” ~Feathered Quill

“A marvelous novel. The most important message the book conveys is that every kid deserves to be
surrounded by the love and support of their family.” ~LitPick

“Katie’s beautiful yet difficult personality is portrayed with authenticity and integrity. This powerful novel shows that a child can endure loneliness, change, and loss.” ~Emma’s Insights

“The story took several unpredictable turns that brought out Katie’s tenacity. Those who like defiant, strong female characters will enjoy watching Katie’s antics.” ~Readers’ Favorite

Current Event from Diary of a Misfit, a short-story compilation companion book to the teen choice award-winning Katie McCabe series, was featured in an art exhibit called Story Chairs created by artist and writer, Tina Hoggatt.

Liana Gardner captures the emotional and tumultuous teenage years as well as the issues teens face: bullying, peer pressure, grief, loss, underage drinking, suicide, first love, and friendship.