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‘Outstanding. The writing is just beautiful.’
Megan Daley, Children’s Books Daily


Out on 1 September 2020, The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn is an enchanting tale celebrating friendship, bravery and the importance of staying true to yourself.

Aimed at readers aged 7/8+, The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn is the story of a lonely orphan (Wonder Quinn) who lives in the attic of Direleafe Hall with only a gloomy crow for company. Every year she watches the other girls return to school, hoping to find a friend among them. And every year her heart breaks when she doesn’t.

So when a fiery new girl befriends her in class, Wonder’s dreams seem to be coming true. Mabel Clattersham is outspoken, kind and, most importantly, unafraid of the awful Georgiana Kinch.

But as the girls grow closer, Wonder discovers her friend has a list of strange wishes: Throw a pie, leap into the sky, break someone’s heart…

What is Mabel’s big secret? And why is she in such a hurry to finish her list? Can Wonder protect her heart from being broken all over again?

Incorporating stunning cover and internal illustrations by up-and-coming illustrator Rachel Tribout, The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn will appeal to anyone who enjoyed The Grimstones series by Asphyxia, The Naming of Tishkin Silk by Glenda Millard and Tensy Farlow and the Home for Mislaid Children by Jen Storer.

Read a sample chapter here.




About the author

Kate Gordon grew up in a very booky house, with two librarian parents, in a small town by the sea in Tasmania. After studying performing arts and realising she was a terrible actor, Kate decided to give in to genetics and study to be a librarian herself. In 2009, she applied for and won a Varuna fellowship. Kate’s first book, Three Things About Daisy Blue, was in 2010. Since then she has published a number of books. Her most recent publications are the young adult novel Girl Running, Boy Falling and the younger reader series Juno Jones: Word Ninja. Kate’s next book is The Ballad of Elodie Rose and will be published in 2021 with UQP.


Early praise for The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn from young readers

‘I loved this magical book that reminded me of Harry Potter.’
Harper, aged 8

‘I enjoyed unlocking the secrets of Wonder and Mabel. I thought it was tense and entertaining, with a twist at the end.’
Lucia, aged 9

‘It’s actually a really good book. The last 20 pages were like WOAH!’
Fred, aged 11

‘I really enjoyed this book. It is full of excitement and adventure.’
Mietta, aged 9

‘I loved Mabel and Wonder’s special friendship and how they helped each other. The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn is an absolutely amazing book that made me feel a mixture of happy, sad, excited and uplifted.’
Imogen, aged 9

The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn is a heartfelt story of a beautiful friendship right to the end.’
Grace, aged 9

‘The novel was incredible, with lots of strong and wonderful messages. I would read this book again and again.’
Emily, aged 11


Need resources?

Go to to download teachers’ notes. Available from publication date.


Request a reading copy

To request a reading copy please email UQP Senior Publicist Jean Smith.





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Kelsey Oldham

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Brad Jefferies

Acting editor, Daily
Matthia Dempsey

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