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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Vassa in the Night

Vassa in the Night

A Novel

Sarah Porter

Tor Teen

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“A dark, thoroughly modern fairy tale crackling with wit and magical mayhem.” —Leigh Bardugo, New York Times bestselling author of Shadow and Bone

“An enchantingly twisted modern fairy tale, perfect for those who prefer Grimm to Disney. Inventive, darkly magical, and beautifully written, it will stay with me for a long time.” — Kendare Blake, New York Times bestselling author of Three Dark Crowns

Vassa in the Night is a powerful and haunting modern retelling of the Russian folktale “Vassilissa the Beautiful” for teen fans of urban fantasy, fairy tales, magic, and horror who enjoy books by Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, Catherynne Valente, and V. E. Schwab.

In the enchanted kingdom of Brooklyn, the fashionable people put on cute shoes, go to parties in warehouses, drink on rooftops at sunset, and tell themselves they’ve arrived. A whole lot of Brooklyn is like that now—but not Vassa’s working-class neighborhood.

In Vassa’s neighborhood, where she lives with her stepmother and bickering stepsisters, one might stumble onto magic, but stumbling out again could become an issue. Babs Yagg, the owner of the local convenience store, has a policy of beheading shoplifters—and sometimes innocent shoppers as well. So when Vassa’s stepsister sends her out for light bulbs in the middle of night, she knows it could easily become a suicide mission.

But Vassa has a bit of luck hidden in her pocket, a gift from her dead mother. Erg is a tough-talking wooden doll with sticky fingers, a bottomless … More…

“A dark, thoroughly modern fairy tale crackling with wit and magical mayhem.” —Leigh Bardugo, New York Times bestselling author of Shadow and Bone

“An enchantingly twisted modern fairy tale, perfect for those who prefer Grimm to Disney. Inventive, darkly magical, and beautifully written, it will stay with me for a long time.” — Kendare Blake, New York Times bestselling author of Three Dark Crowns

Vassa in the Night is a powerful and haunting modern retelling of the Russian folktale “Vassilissa the Beautiful” for teen fans of urban fantasy, fairy tales, magic, and horror who enjoy books by Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, Catherynne Valente, and V. E. Schwab.

In the enchanted kingdom of Brooklyn, the fashionable people put on cute shoes, go to parties in warehouses, drink on rooftops at sunset, and tell themselves they’ve arrived. A whole lot of Brooklyn is like that now—but not Vassa’s working-class neighborhood.

In Vassa’s neighborhood, where she lives with her stepmother and bickering stepsisters, one might stumble onto magic, but stumbling out again could become an issue. Babs Yagg, the owner of the local convenience store, has a policy of beheading shoplifters—and sometimes innocent shoppers as well. So when Vassa’s stepsister sends her out for light bulbs in the middle of night, she knows it could easily become a suicide mission.

But Vassa has a bit of luck hidden in her pocket, a gift from her dead mother. Erg is a tough-talking wooden doll with sticky fingers, a bottomless stomach, and a ferocious cunning. With Erg’s help, Vassa just might be able to break the witch’s curse and free her Brooklyn neighborhood. But Babs won’t be playing fair....

At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

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YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults, Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year, Kansas State Reading Circle

CHAPTER 1



People live here on purpose; that’s what I’ve heard. They even cross the country deliberately and move in to the neighborhoods near the river, and suddenly their shoes are cuter than they are, and very possibly smarter...

Praise for Vassa in the Night

“With a deft hand, lovely prose, and an eye for details, Porter reworks the Russian story of Vassilissa the Beautiful, setting it in an industrial Brooklyn where magic seeps into the mundane.... the end result is an ethereal, almost dreamlike fairy tale that generates a magic all its own."Booklist, starred review

"In this urban-fantasy take on the Russian folk tale 'Vassilissa the Beautiful,' Porter weaves folk motifs into a beautiful and gripping narrative filled with magic, hope, loss, and triumph."Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“[E]lements of traditional horror blend well with high-concept fantasy in this surprising and engaging tale.... A must-have for YA urban fantasy collections."School Library Journal, starred review

Reviews from Goodreads

Sarah Porter

Sarah Porter is a writer, artist, and freelance teacher who lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two cats. She is the author of the Lost Voices Trilogy (Lost Voices, Waking Storms, The Twice Lost) in addition to Vassa in the Night—all for the teen audience. She has an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from City College.

image of Sarah Portero
courtesy of the author

Tor Teen

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