Chantel Acevedo

Born in Miami to Cuban parents, Chantel Acevedo is the author of adult novels, including The Distant Marvels. Muse Squad: The Cassandra Curse (Balzer + Bray), her debut middle grade novel is an action-packed fantasy duology about a Cuban American girl who discovers that she’s one of the nine Muses of Greek mythology. Callie Martinez-Silva didn’t mean to turn her best friend into a pop star. But when a simple pep talk leads to miraculous results, Callie learns she’s the newest muse of epic poetry, one of the nine Muses of Greek mythology tasked with protecting humanity’s fate in secret. Taken to Muse Headquarters, she joins three recruits her age, who call themselves the Muse Squad. Together, the junior muses are tasked with using their magic to inspire and empower—not an easy feat when you’re eleven and still figuring things out. When their first assignment turns out to be Callie’s nerdy classmate, Maya Rivero, the squad comes to Miami to stay with Callie and her Cuban family. There, they discover that Maya doesn’t just need inspiration, she needs saving. As chaos erupts, will the Muse Squad be able to master their newfound powers in time? Publishers Weekly noted that “Acevedo successfully deploys a mixture of imagination and sincerity in this magical duology opener with a message of art’s importance and awakening the hero within.”