Atlas Murphy and the Curious Creatures of WilderBeast Cave49,000 Words • Upper Middle-Grade Adventure
Atlas Murphy, 15, has a simple goal: to change the world. So she finds the courage to sing a song about peace at her school’s football pep rally, only to fail miserably. Then the unthinkable happens. A few moments later a team mascot, a young, wild bear, escapes his cage and is shot dead at her feet. Things get even worse when a parrot flies away with the keys to the school, her father is arrested as a suspect, and she suddenly has a new mission. Atlas finds herself all alone on a quest to stop whoever is using animals to commit crimes.
But she isn’t alone for long. As she follows the clues, she begins to collect some strange beings (commonly known as “friends”). And as dark secrets are revealed, the mystery leads Atlas deep into the wilds of an animal preserve only to be caught in a metal trap, then caged. She must fend off ferocious animals — and an even wilder beast — until she escapes. But Atlas has yet to meet her biggest challenge. On the school roof at night, while the football team plays in the big game, Atlas must fight to survive while choosing which of her friends to save: human or animal.