Posts Tagged ‘Inch and Roly Make a Wish’

Launch Day!

August 27, 2012 @ 5:19 pm | Filed under: , , , ,

Today is a big day for me: pub day for two new books. That doesn’t happen often—books launching on the same date, and it’s been a whirlwind for me this month with Fox and Crow Are Not Friends launching a couple of weeks ago. Usually things are more spread out, but one book got moved up, and one got moved back, and boom! Three, three, three books in one month. I’m a bit dizzy.

And you’ll have to bear with me, because instead of doing my authorly duty to share links and talk up one book, I must do it for three. They’re all my babies. They’re heading out into the great world and I feel much the same as I did in June when I put my seventeen-year-old on a plane to spend the summer at an internship in Austin. I suppose the difference is that one never says about one’s book, “Oh, they just grow up so fast!” Takes a looooong time to raise these story-children.

Especially The Prairie Thief.

This novel, very dear to my heart, started taking shape in my head years ago, when I had an idea about a girl whose mother—it was going to be her mother at the time—being accused of theft, and it was up to the girl to clear her mother’s name, with the help of a magical creature. By the end of the very first sentence, it turned out the accused was her father instead.

“The Smirches took Louisa in when her Pa went to jail, but they weren’t happy about it.”

In the space of that one swift sentence, the whole story shifted. I knew, then, that it was going to take place on my beloved prairie landscape, in a time period that has always captivated me. My working title for the story was Not the Whole Truth, both because of a major plot point and because it hints at the tall-tale quality of the story. It’s set in a fictionalized version of a real historical time and place, but it isn’t straight-up historical fiction; it’s more akin to a folk or fairy tale. Well, if you’ve read my Martha and Charlotte books, you know how much I love spinning a fairy tale.

The main character is a girl, and the cover shows girls, so I’ve been asked whether it will appeal to boy readers as well. My answer: I certainly hope so! There are some very important male characters (including a couple of rowdy young boys), and adventure and bugs and wolves. If your boys read it, let me know what they think. Your girls, too, for that matter!

It’s a Junior Library Guild selection, the Bravewriter Arrow selection for October, and it got a nice review at Kirkus. If you’d like to hear me gabbing out it with the wonderful hosts of the Authors Are Rockstars podcast, it’s the first thing they asked me about. The novel features really quite breathtaking illustrations by the amazing Erwin Madrid (I mean, that cover, could you die?) and I am incredibly excited to see it in print. I hope you’ll enjoy it.

And now for Inch and Roly.

Inch and Roly Make a Wish is the first book in my early reader series about an inchworm, a roly poly, and their buggy friends. It’s a Level 1 Ready-to-Read, which means it’s aimed at the very beginningest of readers. (Whereas Fox and Crow Are Not Friends is a Step Into Reading Level 3.)

If Huck is any indication, Inch and Roly works as a read-aloud for younger children as well. 😉

Inch and Roly and the Very Small Hiding PlaceThe illustrations are by another fabulously talented artist: Ag Jatkowska. I swooned every time a new sketch came to my screen.

Here’s my author letter to readers at the Ready-to-Read home page.

A sequel, Inch and Roly and the Very Small Hiding Place, will be published in January, 2013.

Here’s a roundup of recent reviews and interviews.

So that’s the scoop on the new books! Got any questions for me?

Now Comes the Fun Part

February 20, 2012 @ 4:03 pm | Filed under: , , , ,

As I’ve mentioned, I have three new books coming out this August. Whee!

Middle-grade novel. Margaret K. McElderry Books. Art by Erwin Madrid. He has posted the full wraparound cover on his blog. Gorgeous, isn’t it? What he does with light just blows me away.

A Step into Reading Level 3. Random House. Illustrations by Sebastien Braun. I am crazy about his depiction of my characters—so much humor and personality in their expressions and body language.

A Simon Spotlight Ready-to-Read Level 1. Simon & Schuster. Illustrations by Ag Jatkowska. When Rilla, who had been hearing my Inch and Roly stories for months, saw Ag’s cover sketch she squealed. “Mommy! They’re DORABLE.” 🙂

Yes, we are a little bit excited. 🙂