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Sunday, March 19, 2017

6th MMGM: This Would Make A Good Someday by Dana Alison Levy (interview, giveaway)

Welcome to Day 19 of the 6th Annual March MG Madness, featuring Dana Alison Levy and her book, 
This Would Make A Good Story Someday!

This Would Make a Good Story Someday
by Dana Alison Levy
May 16, 2017
Delacorte Press
From the author of The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher comes an epic cross-country train trip for fans of Dan Santat's Are We There Yet? and Geoff Rodkey's The Tapper Twins. Pack your suitcase and climb on board with the Johnston-Fischer family.

Sara Johnston-Fischer loves her family, of course. But that doesn't mean she's thrilled when her summer plans are upended for a surprise cross-country train trip with her two moms, Mimi and Carol; her younger sister, Ladybug; her older sister, Laurel; and Laurel's poncho-wearing activist boyfriend, Root. And to make matters worse, one of her moms is writing a tell-all book about the trip . . . and that means allllll, every ridiculous and embarrassing moment of Sara's life.
Sara finds herself crisscrossing the country with a gaggle of wild Texans. As they travel from New Orleans to Chicago to the Grand Canyon and beyond, Sara finds herself changing along with the landscape outside the train windows. And she realizes that she just might go home reinvented.

Q1. What three words best describe your book, This Would Make A Good Story Someday?

Trains. Family. Shenanigans.

Q2. Grab a copy of This Would Make A Good Story Someday and answer the following:
Favorite chapter? 23

Favorite page? 130

Favorite setting? New Orleans

Flip to a random page and give us a 1-2 sentences teaser:
And that’s how I wound up eating breakfast with a gorgeous Ukrainian waiter while looking like I peed my pants.

Q3. Who are your favorite middle-grade hero and heroine? What is your favorite middle-grade book?
Oh, that’s pretty close to impossible. I mean, if you asked my top twenty middle grade books that would also be impossible! But one of my favorite heroines would have to be George from Alex Gino’s book GEORGE. She’s brave and thoughtful and knows who she is. And I’m also pretty fond of Luna Lovegood. She’s awesome and doesn’t get enough credit.
And one of my favorite heroes is Filthy McNasty, also known as Josh Bell, from Kwame Alexander’s CROSSOVER. He’s funny and tough and real. Also, Harry Potter. Always.

As for favorite middle grade books, I will give the top five that spring to mind, in no particular order:
  1. Harry Potter (duh)
  2. One Crazy Summer by Rita Garcia-Williams
  3. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
  4. Anne of Green Gables
  5. The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper

I could literally list fifty more and they’d still all be considered favorites, but as promised, those are the first ones that jumped to mind!

Q4. Why do you think middle-grade lit is so important?
Books for middle grade readers, meaning kids approximately 8-12, have to perform a powerful magic. They have to walk alongside people who are transitioning from childhood to young adulthood, from a gaze turned inward at their home and families to the wider world around them. These books can be hilarious, or tragic, they can be exciting supernatural adventures or quiet everyday challenges. But they help kids understand the complicated, wonderful, unfair, puzzling world we live in.

The idea of books as windows and mirrors is not a new one, but it is ever-more important. This is a point in kids’ lives when external pressures are increasing. We count on middle grade books to help readers develop empathy toward others and pride in themselves. And a middle grade book needs to perform this task while engaging and transporting the reader; in short, by being a marvelous story. Personally, I think these books represent some of the best literature ever written.

Q5. If you were to create and bake a cupcake inspired by This Would Make A Good Story Someday, what would it look and taste like, and what would you call it?
Hah! That is certainly the first time I’ve been asked this question! It would have to be organic, so Root and Laurel don’t freak out. I’d call it The Continental, since they travel across the whole country, and I think it would have to have dyed blue frosting, in honor of Sara’s hair. And it would be mocha-flavored, since she finally learns to love coffee. Oh, and of course a cupcake topper of Bruce, the Roman Centurion!

Dana Alison Levy pursued English Literature and Marketing in school, and has worked for a variety of business and nonprofit organizations. Several years ago she began to write full time, working for corporate and academic clients as well as writing fiction. Dana lives in Massachusetts with her family. THE MISADVENTURES OF THE FAMILY FLETCHER is her first novel, and has received several starred reviews, been placed on a number of “Best Of” lists, and is on five state reading lists. A companion novel, THE FAMILY FLETCHER TAKES ROCK ISLAND, is coming out in May 2016. Website * Twitter * Facebook

Win an ARC of  
This Would Make A Good Story Someday!
Random House has generously offered one (1) ARC for one winner.
-ends 4/5/17
-winner will be emailed and must claim prize within 48 hours
-Word Spelunking is not responsible for lost, damaged, or stolen prizes
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anne s. said...

Our daughter loved The Misadventures of Family Fletcher and the sequel. Super excited to tell her about this newest book!

Danielle H. said...

I love the title of this book! I say this sentence often then forget to write my idea down. Have to learn to carry a small notebook everwhere. I love the idea of a cross country trip--I get to travel right along with the characters.

Slowsly said...

Great title! Sounds like a very interesting train trip. I look forward to going on the adventure.