A beautiful work of magical realism, a story about a girl in the real world who is called upon to be a hero.

Buy It Now

When terrorists bomb Disney World, seventeen-year-old Iris Spero is as horrified as anyone else. Then a stranger shows up on her stoop in Brooklyn, revealing a secret about the mysterious circumstances surrounding Iris’s birth, and throwing her entire identity into question. Everything she thought she knew about her parents, and about herself, is a lie.

Suddenly, the press is confronting Iris with the wild notion that she might be “special.” More than just special: she could be the miracle the world now so desperately needs. Families all across the grieving nation are pinning their hopes on Iris like she is some kind of saint or savior. She’s no longer sure whom she can trust—except for Zane, a homeless boy who long ago abandoned any kind of hope. She knows she can’t possibly be the glorified person everyone wants her to be… but she also can’t go back to being safe and anonymous. When nobody knows her but they all want a piece of her, who is Iris Spero now? And how can she—one teenage girl—possibly heal a broken world?

Deals with issues of faith, accepting oneself, and how much a single person can affect the world around her.


A timely but tough read that will bring up recent memories of violence worldwide.


Lovely and lyrical and frighteningly believable. This book will stay with me for a good long time.

— Jenn Marie Thorne, author of The Wrong Side of Right and Night Music

This uplifting book begins with a terrible tragedy and ends with a blessing. After Detweiler gracefully eases the reader into her astonishing “What if?” she explores the life-affirming power of hope and the soul-healing nature of forgiveness.

— Todd Strasser, author of Give a Boy a Gun

An inspirational story about finding the strength to believe in oneself…. An excellent addition to any high school or public library, this book will attract readers of contemporary fantasy.

School Library Journal

The miracle in Transcendent isn’t just the miracle of Iris’s birth. It’s the everyday miracles we are all capable of performing—love, compassion, understanding. Ultimately it’s a story about the miracle of humanity.

— Jennifer Brown, author of Hate List

Transcendent is a beautiful and lovingly-written book about the power of hope. You’ll lose yourself in its pages. And when you emerge, you will see the miracles that surround you, and the ones you can create.

— Francisco X. Stork, author of The Memory of Light

[Explores] the chilling plausibility of the actions and reactions of an America dealing with the murders of thousands of children.

Kirkus Reviews