her 2016 novel “Raymie Nightingale,” Minnesota
writer Kate DiCamillo created three friends — Raymie,
Louisiana and Beverly. They called themselves the Three
Rancheros. Last fall, DiCamillo published her first-ever
sequel (or companion book) when she wrote about the
second Ranchero, La., in “Louisiana’s Way Home.”
third Ranchero be far behind?
not — that third Ranchero, Beverly, was close behind.
novel in the books for middle-grade students,
“Beverly, Right Here,” will be published in
September by Candlewick Press. This is fast for
DiCamillo, who usually publishes a novel every two
this is the smallest gap between major novels for Kate,
but I think once she started discovering their stories,
the writing went quickly,” said Tracy Miracle,
DiCamillo’s longtime publicist and senior executive
director of publicity at Candlewick. “She says that it
‘was like it was all just waiting. And once I opened
it, everything came out.’”
are not a true series — they are really companion
books to each other featuring some of the same
characters and can be read in any order.
Rancheros all have problematic childhoods. In the first
book, Raymie is grappling with the fact that her father
has left the family. In “Louisiana’s Way Home,”
Louisiana must build a life after her grandmother
“Beverly, Right Here,” Beverly’s dog has died, her
father has been long gone, and her mother has been
emotionally absent. “Determined to make it on her own,
Beverly finds a job and a place to live. … She
doesn’t want to depend on anyone, and she definitely
doesn’t want anyone to depend on her. But despite her
best efforts, she can’t help forming connections with
the people around her — and gradually she learns to
see herself through their eyes.”
Nightingale” was a finalist for a National Book Award.
DiCamillo is a two-time winner of the Newbery Award and
a former National Ambassador for Young People’s
Literature, appointed by the Librarian of Congress.