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Swing Sideways Audiobook, by Nanci Turner Steveson Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Nanci Turner Steveson Narrator: Tara Sands Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2016 ISBN: 9780062455246
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Perfect for fans of Bridge to Terabithia and Walk Two Moons, this debut middle grade novel is the story of two girls and the unforgettable summer in which they learn about true friendship and loss.                                              

Annie has been promised a summer of freedom in the country. Freedom from a difficult school year, freedom from her fake “friends” back in the city, and, most of all, freedom from her mom’s life-governing spreadsheets and rigid schedules.

When Annie meets California, who is visiting her grandfather’s farm, it seems she has found the perfect partner for the summer she’s always craved. Especially when California offers Annie a real-life adventure: if she and Annie can find the ponies her mom rode as a girl, surely it will remind her mom how wonderful the farm is—and fix what’s broken between her mom and her grandfather.

But Annie’s summer of freedom is sprinkled with secrets, and everything she has learned about bravery and love will be put to the test when the truth behind the ultimate secret changes her life forever.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Every word, every gesture, every disagreement registers on the internal Richter scale as two friends negotiate the highs and lows of true friendship…Together, the girls uncover dark family secrets and learn to be brave under pressure. This is a summer neither Annabel nor readers will ever forget.”

    School Library Journal

  • “This powerful tale of friendship and hope, made especially poignant by each girl’s struggle to repair family relationships, will capture hearts. Add an injured dog, a search for mysterious ponies, woods made for adventures, and heartbreak that never becomes mawkish, and you have a story about so much more than summer fun.”


  • “This will please country girls at heart, those needing to be brave, and those wanting a good summer story of friendship and growth.”

    Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

  • “An empathic summer-of-change story in which panic-attack-prone Annabel transforms from a skinny, anxiety-ridden bookworm into a healthier, stronger, and braver girl.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “An anxious girl makes a mysterious summer friendship in this middle-grade debut.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Narrator Tara Sands realistically interprets a well-off teen’s wry observations of her dysfunctional family and their friends…Sands’ portrayal of California begins cheerily confident. Later, the voices of both girls change, becoming soft and quavery, sometimes angry, as they face hard truths about themselves, their families, and each other.”


  • A Library Journal Audio-in-Advance Pick for Middle Grade

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About the Author

Nanci Turner Steveson grew up in Connecticut, England, and Texas, always with a book in one hand and the reins of a pony in the other. She works as a riding instructor and as a stage manager with the Off Square Theatre Company. She is also the founder of the Literacy for Hope Project, dedicated to getting books into the hands of the homeless. Nanci lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, with her Arabian horse and rescue dog.

About the Narrator

Tara Sands is an American actress, television host, and voice talent who has won numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards for narration. She is former cohost of Fridays on the Cartoon Network. In addition to performing in plays and musicals, her voice can be heard on numerous commercials, audiobooks, cartoons, and video games.