Ask a Debut Author
The Class of 2k7 is a collective of authors with debut middle-grade or young adult novels to be published in 2007. We welcome your questions for the "Ask a Debut Author" feature of this blog. Archives are located here.
Sundee Frazier won the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent for Brendan Buckley’s Universe & Everything In It(Delacorte).
G. Neri made the 2007 list for Notable Children's Books with his Chess Rumble, illustrated by by Jesse Joshua Watson (Lee & Low).
Then three members of the Class (yes three!) were chosen as the 2007 Best Books for Young Adults:
Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why (Penguin Group USA/Razorbill);
Ann Dee Ellis's This Is What I Did (Little, Brown); and
Sara Zarr's Story of a Girl (Little, Brown) which was also a finalist for the National Book Awards!
You go, Class of 2k7!!!
“One mistake.Frank Marder is a head, paralyzed from the neck down, and it’s his fault. He was drinking. He was driving. Now Frank can’t walk, he can’t move, he can’t feel his skin. He needs someone to feed him, to wash him, to move his body. Now he must learn to deal with his lack of independence, his parents, his sister, his friends.
One bad night.
One too many drinks.”
Will he ever feel like a whole person?
When you're a head, do you ever get to forgive yourself?
But if you ask most of the people who post on www.quadkingonthenet, he hasn’t been adequately punished. Two people are dead because of him. Frank should go to jail. Only “Anonymous” disagrees.
A powerful and heartbreaking debut novel about a guy who had it all… until he drank that one last beer and got into the car. Head Case will make you consider how we judge each other. And how we can move beyond our mistakes—with honesty, compassion, and even humor.
"It will make a strong impression on readers with its raw emotion and bitter narrative tone."—Booklist
"Aronson's raw first novel delves into the emotions, mobility, daily functions (e.g., eating, talking on a phone and using a computer) and even the pleasures and sex of quadriplegics. Above all, it asks us to consider how we value individuals with disabilities."—Kirkus Reviews
"First time novelist Sarah Aronson's take on a situation that most people would consider nightmarish manages to not only be hopeful, but also full of humor and the strength of the human spirit."—Reading Rants
Squat toilets, profuse sweating, bamboo huts, jumbo centipedes, ear nibbling — these are just some of the delights Autumn has encountered in her global travels. Not to mention the can’t-believe-it’s-true Laotian jungle adventure which inspired Carpe Diem. (You’ll just have to read the book!)
A travel junkie, Autumn has explored twenty-two countries and counting. She’s spent the last couple summers working with refugees and orphans in Burma, Thailand, and Laos. Southeast Asia remains close to her heart since her days as a missionary kid in New Papua — where she ate her weight in guavas and mingled with reformed headhunters and cannibals. Which was nothing compared to navigating the intrepid jungles of the TV & Film Industry, where she spent most of her career. (Not including her stint as a tour guide at Hearst Castle).
After spending the rest of her childhood in Washington State, Autumn moved to Southern California for college and refused to leave. She lives in Los Feliz, a neighborhood in Los Angeles, with her husband JC, who works in visual effects at Imageworks. With his assistance, she’s produced her biggest project to date: son Dexter, born August 2006 — who thankfully doesn’t require much editing.
To find out more about Autumn or members of the Class of 2k7 check out our website!
Book: Carpe Diem
“I’ve got my entire life planned out for the next ten years — including my PhD and Pulitzer Prize,” claims overachiever VASSAR SPORE (16), daughter of overachiever parents, who in true overachiever fashion named her after an elite women’s college. Vassar expects her sophomore summer to include AP and AAP (Advanced Advanced Placement) classes to propel her to a 5.3 GPA and Ivy League fame. Surprise! Enter long lost bohemian GRANDMA GERD (60s) who sends her plans into a tailspin: she blackmails Vassar’s parents into forcing their only child backpack with her through Southeast Asia.
Vassar freaks out – her entire academic career is at stake! She can’t believe her parents are insisting she go and that they refuse to reveal the Big Secret. But, being a Spore, Vassar soon transforms the negative into a positive by turning the trip into an extra credit novel for her AAP English class.
Vassar tries to immerse herself in her novel. But what starts out as research turns into a series of misadventures from Malaysia to Cambodia to the remote jungles of Laos. She sweats, falls in love, hones her outdoor survival skills — and uncovers a family secret that turns her whole world upside-down.
Vassar Spore can plan on one thing: she’ll never be the same again.
A.C.E. Bauer has been telling and writing stories since childhood. She took a short break to write dreadful poetry, and then a longer one while she worked as an attorney, writing legal briefs and telling stories about her clients. She has returned to fiction, and now writes children’s books and short stories for all ages. No Castles Here, a finalist for the 2002 Tassy Walden Award: New Voices in Children’s Literature, is her first middle-grade novel.
Born and raised in Montreal, she spends most of the year in Cheshire, Connecticut, and much of the summer on a lake in Quebec. She lives with her husband, two children, and their dog Speedy.
Book: No Castles Here
Camden, New Jersey, is the armpit of the world, as far as Augie is concerned. Home to losers and bullies, its schools offer nothing to someone who isn’t smart, isn’t stupid, and who isn’t a troublemaker. When Augie escapes to Philadelphia dreaming of castles and promise, he becomes a thief and steals a magical book of fairy tales.
Life only gets crazier. For sixth grade, Augie is assigned the meanest, toughest teacher in school. His mom signs him up with a Big Brother he doesn’t want. And he discovers that even in his world, there might be such a thing as a fairy godmother.
Augie is eleven-and-a-half. This is his time for adventure. He hadn’t figured it would begin in a bookstore.
Both of these New England writers had debut titles this fall. Alice's book is called NO CASTLES HERE (Random House). Check out behind the cut to see the exciting interview.
Later this week we'll feature some more about A.C.E's debut book, and more about the writer, herself.
She's a Class member, blogger extraordinaire, and all around good person. Did you know that Carrie likes Skinny Cow fudgicles and potatoes? She does not know how to spell fudgicles, but this has not prevented her from writing books--one is on the shelves, and another five are on their way! She lives with her cute family in Maine. She has a large, skinny white dog and a fat cat. Both like fudgicles. Only the cat likes potatoes. This may be a reason for the kitty’s weight problem (Shh… don’t tell). Carrie has always liked cowboy hats but has never owned one. This is a very wrong thing. She graduated from Vermont College’s MFA program for writing. She has edited newspapers and poetry journals and has recently won awards from the Maine Press Association and also been awarded the Martin Dibner Fellowship as well as a Maine Literary Award.
We asked Carrie some nosy questions a while back. This is one of my favorites:
You can read more interview answers on her Class of 2k7 Interview Page, and find about more about her on her website, her MySpace page, and her blog.
Congratulations, Carrie! We are so proud of you.
Tips on Having a Gay (ex) Boyfriend.
Belle, a high school senior, has a perfect long-time boyfriend, Dylan. But then Dylan turns out to be gay. Belle must come to terms with what this means for her, for him, and for the small town they live in. Not only must she deal with the all-time stinkiness of being dumped, but with Dylan being in real physical danger because he is gay. Belle is the high-school’s resident militant leftie and crusader for the oppressed—including homosexuals, of course. She never thought that she’d be crusading for her blonde, green-eyed ex-boyfriend. And at the same time, she falls in love, all over again, with Tom, who is hopefully not gay. Belle has her fingers crossed.
Carrie’s second novel, Love (and Other Uses for Duct Tape), will be released in March 2008, followed by a third titled True Grit.