Congratulations on the publication of NERDCRUSH by Alisha Emrich publishing today (Running Press Kids)!

Happily Ever Afters meets You’ve Got Mail in this geeky, Black Girl Magic filled YA debut about cosplay and finding the courage to be yourself.

Ramona Lambert is a typical shy, artistic sixteen-year-old. She has a best friend whom she’s known since they were in diapers; parents who love her; a love for cosplay; and a crush on the cute boy in her class.

The only problem? Her best friend moved away; her parents don’t quite understand her love of cosplay; and she is pretty sure her crush has no idea she exists.  

To escape her troubles, Ramona turns to cosplay and her original character, Rel, who gives her the confidence and freedom that she lacks in real life. Embracing this confidence, she decides to strike up an email conversation with her crush, Caleb Wolfe, from her cosplay account in the hopes of getting to know him . . . and maybe win his heart. Then Caleb and Ramona are swept up in their emails back and forth to each other, and Ramona falls even harder as he opens up about his hopes, insecurities, and his own geeky loves. However, as Caleb starts to grow closer and closer to Rel, he also strikes up a friendship with Ramona, who knows she can’t keep the truth about Rel from Caleb but isn’t sure she is ready to risk losing him. With an important cosplay convention coming up and the anxiety of her double-life weighing on her, Ramona has to decide if she’ll hide behind her cosplay character forever or take the chance and let Caleb see the real her–because he might actually like her for who she is.

Alisha Emrich writes YA fiction about awkward Black girls finding their happily ever afters. She has always loved stories of all kinds, but especially ones where the nerdy girl gets the cute guy. Alisha holds a B.A. in English from Armstrong Atlantic University, and an M.A. in English and an M.A. in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University where she completed a MFA in Young Adult fiction last year.

Alisha is represented by Laura Cameron.