The Storyteller (Hardcover)

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The Storyteller By Kathryn Williams Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

A sweet and exciting self-discovery story that combines the tender years of the early aughts with the intrigue and tragedy of the early 1900s Romanov family. In 2007, Jess is trying to live her truth but feels held back by family and friends. She discovers her great-great-aunt Ana's journals from the early 1900s and is astonished to find that her eccentric aunt might have been Grand Duchess Anastasia Romanov. Jess finds a Russian translator in awkward, nerdy and delightful Evan; and they embark on a summer of exploration. Though Ana's diary entries and working together, they learn that truth can be many things, but is rarely as it seems. I listened via Libro.FM and the narration was splendid! Hearing the Russian names and places was fascinating and added great ambiance to the story.

— From Ashleigh


With the mystery of Maureen Johnson and Brittany Cavallaro and the historical intrigue of Romanov, this genre-bending YA will pull readers into one girl’s journey of discovering the impossible tale of a long-lost aunt—and through her, the importance of being true to yourself. 

It’s not every day you discover you might be related to Anastasia…or that the tragic princess actually survived her assassination attempt and has been living as the woman you know as Aunt Anna.  

For Jess Morgan, who is growing tired of living her life to please everyone else, discovering her late aunt’s diaries shows her she’s not the only one struggling to hide who she really is. But was her aunt truly a Romanov princess? Or is this some elaborate hoax?

With the help of a supremely dorky but undeniably cute local college student named Evan, Jess digs into the century-old mystery.

But soon Jess realizes there’s another, bigger truth waiting to be revealed: Jess Morgan. Because if she’s learned anything from Aunt Anna, it’s that only you can write your own story.

About the Author

Kathryn Williams is the author of five books, including four young adult novels. From the South originally, she lives with her family near Portland, Maine, and teaches at The Telling Room, a nonprofit creative writing center for kids and teens, where she helps youth find and tell their own stories.  

Praise For…

“Anna’s narrative on Jess’ life is noteworthy and satisfying by the time the tale is untangled… An interesting take on storytelling and identity” — Kirkus Reviews

“A genre-blending novel that is sure to grip readers to the very end, mixing mystery, romance, historical fiction, and a touch of purpose into one terrific experience.” — Booklist

“This is a book that will sit with readers, making them question what exactly is a person’s truth… This excellent, engaging mystery is a first purchase.” — School Library Journal

Product Details
ISBN: 9780063049390
ISBN-10: 0063049392
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: January 11th, 2022
Pages: 368
Language: English