Announcing the arrival of THE GIRL AT THE CENTER OF THE WORLD!

Dear Reader,

The Girl at the Center of the WorldTHE GIRL AT THE CENTER OF THE WORLD, sequel to my 2014 YA science fiction debut (The Islands at the End of the World) is finally out! Please consider supporting your local brick-and-mortar bookseller. And don’t forget…Islands releases in paperback this week, too! I will be able to autograph a copy of any book for you if you order through Changing Hands Bookstore and ask for it to be personalized at checkout:

But let’s dispense with logistics, shall we?

Welcome to the Big Island! Enjoy your escape, but know that this is no vacation. Leilani Milton and her family, whom you may have met in The Islands at the End of the World, are heading down a very difficult and bewildering road. Of course, unique hardships are nothing unusual for Hawai`i.

The Big Island is a challenging and unpredictable place during the best of times. It’s a cauldron of brewing forces—in every sense. One side is a vacation paradise, perfect for golfing, deep-sea fishing, scuba diving, luaus, and beachside massages. The other side is a rocky, rainy jungle too harsh for most visitors but beloved by locals, erupting with unique culture, tradition, and historical tension. And between the two sides are volcanoes—literally erupting at this very moment! at once strangely accessible and beautiful, yet cruel and deadly.

Few fantasy or science-fiction worlds can boast such a spectacular setting.

I was only a guest there myself. I lived in Hilo long enough to earn a master’s degree in Tropical Conservation Biology. During that time, the schizophrenic Big Island settled deeply into my soul, and when I began to think about writing a novel set there, Leilani Milton appeared. Several years later, Leilani is a constant companion, and her severe paradise remains vividly close. I’m so excited to return to Leilani’s story, to linger in the stranger-than-fiction setting of her haunting home—and I’m grateful that you’ll be joining us on this new adventure.

As these pages open, I’m both exhilarated and unsettled by the extraordinary trials facing Leilani. Just as my time on the Big Island and with Leilani has done for me, I hope this book delights you and disquiets you in equal measure, and stays with you after you’ve said goodbye.

Happy reading.

Austin Aslan


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