September 3,  2013

  Kids' Authors Share Their Stories

Fabulous Book Giveaways for Your Club


Dear Readers,


In this issue of KidsBuzz, featuring book giveaways and behind-the-scenes stories from top kids' authors,

you'll meet:


... Mia, who lives in a rainforest and has plenty of questions about living there in the exciting thriller ESCAPE FROM EDEN 
...Charlie Cooper, who tries to ditch her middle-child reputation and make cool friends at her new school in CONFESSIONS OF A SO-CALLED MIDDLE CHILD 


...Willow Chance, as she explores the true meaning of family in COUNTING BY 7S, and

...Lily Lapp, an Amish girl who might be more like you than you think... in A SURPRISE FOR LILY.
Warm wishes,
Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp 

 Block1Ages 12 and up / Young Adult Mystery/Thriller / Merit Press/Adams Media    

Win a set of ESCAPE FROM EDEN by Elisa Nader for your book club. Enter to win by emailing the author (write "Kidsbookclubbing" in the subject line.)


EscapeEden Dear Reader,

When I was a teenager, I asked questions. A lot of big questions. What is the meaning of life? What is true love? What is real truth? What will my future be like?  
ESCAPE FROM EDEN is about sixteen-year-old Mia. She lives in a commune in the rainforest in South America. And she's asking her own questions. Why did her mother bring her to Edenton to live? Why is she forced to follow the teachings of an egomaniacal reverend? And what is the world like outside the heavily guarded gates? Mia questions lead her to discover dark secrets about  Edenton, her mother, and herself. But will those same secrets lead to a bright future?  

Happy reading!


Elisa Nader


Book reviews:  

"The chemistry between Mia and Gabriel is palpable in their teasing dialogue and sizzling moments of physical connection. Its rewards...are many: fast-moving action, a capable heroine and a resolution that leaves plenty of room for a sequel."

-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


"Nader has done something amazing: written a really original novel, one full of characters you'll care about; smart, witty dialog; and plenty of shocks and thrills. A wonderful balance of light and dark."

-Michael Grant, New York Times Bestselling Author of the Gone Series 


"Chilling, suspenseful and evocative, ESCAPE FROM EDEN is one of the most surprising love stories I've read in ages. Elisa Nader is an exciting new talent in YA fiction and her first novel will have people lining up to join her cult. Consider me the first member."

-Bennett Madison, Author of THE BLONDE OF THE JOKE and SEPTEMBER GIRLS


"An exciting, terrifying, page-turning thrill ride you will not be able to put down."

-Gretchen McNeil, Author of POSSESS, TEN and 3:59


Discussion questions:    


1. How does Mia feel about Edenton? What did you think of Edenton? How would you feel if you lived there? What parts would you like? And what parts wouldn't you like?     

2. Mia is furious with her mother, but later finds out why her mother is acting the way she is. Have there been times you've been angry with someone for something, then found out you misunderstood the situation?     

3. What does the symbol of Edenton mean?    

4. What makes Mia and Gabriel trust each other?       

5. What do you think the outside world looks like to Mia? Or Juanita (since she's been in Edenton since she was very young)?     

6. Why does Mia return to Edenton? Why does Gabriel? Would you go back if you escaped?      

7. Why do you think they are where they are in the last chapter of the book? What do you think happens to Mia and Gabriel after the end of the book?


To read the first chapter of ESCAPE FROM EDEN, and find out more via the author's blog, Twitter, or Facebook, visit her website.


AUTHOR CALL-IN INFORMATION: Elisa Nader is happy to call-in via phone, Skype or Google Hangout to your book club! To arrange a visit, email the author.  


Ages 8 and up / Young Reader Fiction / Harper Collins   


Win a set of CONFESSIONS OF A SO CALLED MIDDLE CHILD by Maria T. Lennon for your book club. Enter to win by emailing the author (write "KidsBookclubbing" in the subject line).  


ConfessionsCover Dear Reader:

As a novelist and a mother of four young kids, I practically live in bookstores and libraries. I know most shelves by heart. And the one problem I have always had is finding a book for my daughters about a girl facing similar problems at school and at home that my daughters did. I didn't waMariaLennonnt a preachy, moral book, because God knows kids can smell a moral a mile a way. I didn't want a book about money and clothes and makeup either. I wanted something funny. I wanted something real. I never found it. So I wrote it. Her name is Charlie Cooper -- she's a twelve-year-old middle-child who lives in the Houdini mansion in LA. Her idols are Nelson Mandela, Coco Chanel and Steve Jobs. Her sister is gifted. Her little brother is an angel. And Charlie, well, she's a reformed bully who gets a fresh start.


I hope you enjoy her as much as we do. 


Maria Lennon


Book reviews:


"Lennon's tale addresses manifold topics, including the pressures and social issues of middle school, friendship quandaries and bullying. Charlie's eclectic mix of interests -- she's a computer prodigy with a talent for hacking and an aspiring fashion trendsetter who harbors a keen interest in Harry Houdini  -- contribute to her distinctive narrative voice. Lennon skillfully delves beyond Charlie's sass and troubled façade to reveal her insecurities and vulnerability."

-Kirkus Reviews 


"Readers will admire the unabashedly quirky Charlie as she embarks upon her journey of self-understanding and transformation with verve .... In her first book for children, adult author Lennon (Making It Up as I Go Along) offers a fast-moving story with a satirical edge."

-Publishers Weekly


Discussion questions:

  1. Do you have a girl like Marta at your school?  
  2. Do you stick up for her when other kids are being mean?  
  3. How do you go against what the popular kids are doing?  
  4. Do you ever wish you could start over?  
  5. What's your best prank ever?

To read an excerpt and keep up with Maria Lennon via her blog, Twitter, Facebook or MySpace, please visit her website     


AUTHOR CALL-IN INFORMATION: Maria Lennon is happy to call-in to or Skype with your club. She can also meet with your group and or school if you live in the Los Angeles area. Email the author to submit your request.




Ages 10+ / Middle Grade Fiction / Penguin


Win a set of COUNTING BY 7S by Holly Goldberg Sloan for your book club! Enter to win by emailing the author (write "KidsBookclubbing" in the subject line).



Dear Reader:


I write books to understand my own life. And I hope that when I tell a story it will have meaning in your life as well.


I have found that laughter can exist in the same space as sorrow. It is part of the same process. It is a release. HollySloan  


Counting By 7s is the most personal story I have ever told, which is not to say that it is my own narrative, but I understand the people I'm writing about, and I have tried to make them characters that will live on once you've put the book down.


Thank you for reading!


Holly Goldberg Sloan

Book reviews:

"Willow Chance subtly drew me into her head and her life, so much so that I was holding my breath for her by the end. Holly Goldberg Sloan has created distinct characters who will stay with you long after you finish the book."

- Sharon Creech, author of Walk Two Moons


"Sloan (I'll Be There, 2011) has masterfully created a graceful, meaningful tale featuring a cast of charming, well-rounded characters who learn sweet-but never cloying-lessons about resourcefulness, community, and true resilience in the face of loss."

- Booklist (starred review)


Discussion questions:

  1. Losing a loved one can be a very difficult experience. This is especially true for Willow Chance, who loses both parents at a young age and is left alone in a world that she doesn't fully understand. Have you ever been in a situation that made you feel as lonely as Willow? What would you have done if you were in her position?        
  2. Eventually Willow finds comfort and hope from five very different and unexpected friends. Have you ever lost anyone with whom you were particularly close? If so, did anyone help you cope? If not, have you been that person for someone else?       
  3. Counting by 7s is about the true meaning of family and how the definition can be fluid. What is your definition of family? Do you have any friends you would consider family?

To learn more about the book, its characters and to follow Holly Goldberg Sloan on Twitter or Facebook, please visit her website.  

AUTHOR CALL-IN INFORMATION: Holly Goldberg Sloan is happy to call-in to or Skype with your club. Please visit the author's website to submit your request.



Ages 8 - 12 / Chapter book - Middle Grade Fiction / Revell/Baker Publishing Group


Win a set of A SURPRISE FOR LILY by Suzanne Woods Fisher for your book club. Enter to win by emailing the author (write "Kidsbookclubbing" in the subject line).


SurpriseLIly Dear Readers,


It might seem an Amish girl like Lily Lapp's life is very different from yours, and in some ways, that's true. Lily doesn't have electricity in her home, she wears a bonnet and a long plain dress, and her family car iFishers a horse and buggy. But in many other ways, Lily is just like you. She loves her family, her friends (most of them, anyway), she enjoys school (most of the time), and she likes to have fun!  


The 'Adventures of Lily Lapp' series is based on the Old Order Amish childhood of Mary Ann Kinsinger. You'll want to jump into the pages and join Lily's family as you grow to love the farm, the animals, and the people.


Keep reading!


Suzanne Woods Fisher


Book reviews:  


"A very fun, entertaining read."

- Julia, age 12


"If your little girl likes adventure books, I know your little girl will like this book."

- AJ, age 9


"This is a great book especially if you enjoy the Little House Series or American Girl Kirsten and Felicity books."

- Emily, age 10


"I have absolutely loved every book in the Adventures of Lily Lapp series and will be sad to see it end."


Discussion questions:

  1. Who are the Amish?
  2. Where do they live? How many Amish are there?
  3. What language do the Amish speak?
  4. Do the Amish attend school?
  5. How could Lily not have known that her mother was having a baby?

Be sure to check out Lily's website to play games, download coloring pages, and learn more about the Amish. You can even ask Lily a question. Enter to win copies of the first book in the series, Life with Lily, for your book club members by emailing the author. 


AUTHOR CALL-IN INFORMATION: Suzanne Woods Fisher is available to talk with your group by Skype or telephone. Please email the author to submit your request.

  • A maximum of 10 books is available for each book club giveaway.

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