March 28, 2014 at 06:00 PM EDT

Scott Westerfeld, the author of the extremely popular Uglies and Leviathan series, has a new novel novel coming out on Sept. 23. Afterworlds is a suspenseful thriller about a young writer, Darcy Patel, who arrives in New York City with a contract to write a YA novel. There’s a meta element: Darcy’s novel-within-the-novel, also called Afterworlds — about a girl who delves into a realm between the living and the dead to hide out during a terrorist attack — is woven into Darcy’s narrative as she learns to navigate life in the city.

Check out the exclusive cover to Afterworlds above!

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