Summer of L.U.C.K.
INtense Publications, 15 September 2020
Summer of L.U.C.K.

Summer of L.U.C.K. is available now in hardcover, paperback and e-book. Order through Children’s Book World hardcover and paperback for an autographed copy and Official bookmark! Also available at Amazon (hardcover, paperback, Kindle e-book), Barnes & Noble (hardcover, paperback), Indiebound (hardcover, paperback), Bookshop (hardcover, paperback) and wherever else books are sold.

Stuttering Darby is never perfect enough for her mother. Justin’s been silent since his dad died. Naz is struggling to learn English. But after they meet at summer camp, mysterious calliope music from an abandoned warehouse grants them power to communicate without words. When they sneak inside, the dark, empty space bursts into a magical carnival. They’re greeted by the ghost of Leroy Usher, who asks for their help convincing his family to restore the carnival to its former glory. In return, he promises to teach the kids how to find their voices.

As Darby, Justin, and Naz are swept off on a series of midnight adventures via Mr. Usher’s carnival rides, they discover they’re capable of more than they ever imagined. With each challenge, their confidence in communicating – and in themselves – grows. Meanwhile, they scheme to persuade the Usher family to revive the carnival. But when Darby’s bunkmates trick her into starring in the camp talent show, her budding confidence falters. Can she risk being less than perfect by performing in the show and speaking up to Mr. Usher’s resistant son? If not, she’ll put the carnival in danger and sabotage her most important quest: to believe in herself, stutter and all.

You’re invited to add Summer of L.U.C.K. to your GOODREADS books to read!


INtense Publications, the Texas-based independent publishing house, has acquired Summer of L.U.C.K., a contemporary middle grade fantasy for ages 8 to 12, by Los Angeles-based writer Laura Segal Stegman. Stegman’s debut novel, the story of three youngsters finding their way to self-acceptance with the help of a ghost who haunts a magical carnival, will be released on September 15, 2020.

As Darby described the man who’d greeted her at the carnival, Justin’s and Naz’s mouths fell open. “His name is Leroy Usher, Carnival King. Like the letters on the building. L.U.C.K. Get it?”

Naz, white as a sheet, gulped. “But Woody told us Leroy Usher is dead.”

Her face clouded. “If he’s dead,” she said quietly, “who talked to me yesterday?”

“Laura Stegman conjures up a tale of friendship, set in the perfect summer camp (with a nod to the original Parent Trap film) that just happens to have a magical carnival next door. It’s a story about coming to terms with loss, change, and finding the confidence to face the difficult challenges of life. Stegman’s debut novel feels like an instant classic.

Kitty Felde, author, Welcome to Washington, Fina Mendoza and Book Club for Kids podcast


“Middle grade readers… will relish this… compelling read. Highly recommended reading that stands out from the crowd.”

Midwest Book Review


A magical middle-grade adventure about the power of self-acceptance…  a fun-filled read sprinkled with whimsy, humor, and heart.”

Pine Reads Review


Summer of L.U.C.K. is as much for adults as it is for tweens and young teens… the life lessons are so worthwhile.”

ItsNotAboutMe.TV e-zine


“Imaginative and emotionally true.”

Lynne Heffley, children’s media critic, writer, editor


Beautifully-written… Laura Stegman weaves all of this into a classic, middle grade mystery with twists and turns and enough clever magic to keep you turning those pages more quickly than you ever thought possible.”

— Frank Morelli, author, Please Return To middle grade series


“Summer of L.U.C.K. is a coming-of-age story with a bewitching twist! Three campers with a curious connection stumble into an otherworldly adventure—and soon learn that to save the day they’ll have to step out of their comfort zones. Relatable characters and offbeat situations will keep young readers turning the page.”

Brenda Scott Royce, author, Chance’s Choice and One Wordy Bird


“Middle grade students will love this delightful multi-layer story of friendship and family, summer camp life and magical adventures.”

Cheryl Schuermann, author, A Boy Called Preacher


“Summer of L.U.C.K.’s successful blend of friendship, adventure, mystery, and fantasy are the qualities of a winning book for eight- to twelve-year-olds.”

Beth Miller, Los Angeles Unified School District Reading Specialist


Fun and engaging.”

— Cassie Thomas, Teachers Who Read


“Laura Stegman captures the voice and heart of adolescence and the struggle to beat the odds and fit in. The bond of friendship that overcomes obstacles is a joy to read beginning to end.”

Michele Hennessy, kids entertainment producer and executive


“Whimsical and full of heart.”

Alyssa Roat, author, Dear Hero


“A charming story about family, friendships, and heartwarming reconciliations.”

Colette Sewall, author, Kiki MacAdoo and the Graveyard Ballerinas


You cannot help but fall in love with the characters…I absolutely love the themes of restoration and courage. I can’t wait to see what else the author comes up with next!”

Hope Bolinger, author, Blaze, Den, Unmasked, Dear Hero


“Laura Segal Stegman does an amazing job making you immediately care about her characters in this fun summer camp story.”

Stephenie Wilson Peterson, author, Grace’s Ghosts


A wonderful story… engaging… the characters are vivid.”

R. M. Clark, prolific author of middle grade and other books