I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the ORPHAN ELEVEN by Gennifer Choldenko Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!
Four orphans have escaped from the Home for Friendless Children. One is Lucy, who used to talk and sing. No one knows why she doesn’t speak anymore; silence is her protection.
The orphans find work and new friends at a traveling circus. Lucy loves caring for the elephants, but she must be able to speak to them, and to warn others of danger. If Lucy doesn’t find her voice, she’ll be left behind when the circus goes on the rails. Meanwhile, people are searching for Lucy, and her puzzling past is about to catch up with her.
- What is on your nightstand?
Stamped by Jason Reynolds, Blended by Sharon Draper, and Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
- What author would you totally fan?
Gary Schmidt, Cece Bell, Christopher Paul Curtis, David Macaulay, Veera Hirnandani. I would totally follow these people around like an eager puppy.
- What makes you cringe?
When people make subtle racist comments. I’m trying to teach myself to stay calm and open up a dialogue about whatever it is they said instead of getting angry. It’s not easy, but wow is it important.
- Do you obsessively plot out each point or just go with the flow?
If a pantser and an outliner had a child, that would be me. Outlining gets me thinking about the macro of a novel. But I write in the micro. Once a character starts talking to me, they take command and I toss out the outline and I run with it until I get stuck. Then I switch to the macro again. I sometimes have ten or fifteen outlines for a novel. None of them fits the finished book, but I couldn’t get to the finished book without them.
- Is there a word you love to use?
Since I never write as me, my favorite words rarely show up on the page.
That said though every manuscript has a word I overuse. So the trick is to find it and delete it before my copyeditor does. One of my pet peeves is when an author comes up with some usual word which so fits the sentence and the zeitgeist of the book. But then they spoil that divine moment by using that same unique word again and again.
With more than 2 and a half million books sold, Choldenko’s best known Tales from Alcatraz series, has been called “A cornerstone series in contemporary children’s literature.” Al Capone Does My Shirts—the first book in the series—was a Newbery Honor Book and the recipient of twenty other awards. All four books in the series were Junior Library Guild selections and garnered many starred reviews. Gennifer’s newest novel: Orphan Eleven will be out May 26. Publisher’s Weekly has said this about Orphan Eleven: “This uplifting tale of hope, survival and belonging has all the ingredients to become a beloved middle grade book.” Gennifer lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her loyal husband and naughty dog.
3 winners will receive a finished copy of ORPHAN ELEVEN, US Only.
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