Thursday, August 4, 2011

WQI & ARC Giveaway: May B.

I'm so, so, so excited. Author Caroline Starr Rose agreed to do a World's Quickest Interview (WQI) with me! Caroline is an incredibly talented writer and a very sweet blog-friend. And, because she's a former teacher, she's a huge advocate for literature in the classroom. Her blog is very wise and informative, so if you're not already a follower, check it out


Earlier this year, I was privileged to win the ARC of her debut middle-grade verse novel, MAY B. And today I'm -- *sniff, sniff* -- giving it away to one lucky winner. It's really okay, though. I'll buy my own copy when it comes out in January. MAY B. is the kind of book I want to own in hardcover, so it will last through all my five children reading it and someday my grandchildren.

Now, without further ado, I give you the amazing Caroline Starr Rose and her very short answers to my very short questions:

Describe your book in one sentence.
Abandoned and alone, May must fight to survive a harsh winter and even harsher school memories as she comes to terms with who she truly is.

How long have you been writing?
Thirteen years.

Who or what inspired this book?
Laura Ingalls love, Hatchet fascination, and curiosity about the way children with disabilities would have been treated in the past.

How long did it take you to write this book?
I started the first draft in 2007 and wrote in fits and starts during the 2007-2008 school year.

Besides writing, what do you like to do most?
Reading, running, cuddling with my boys, and eating green chile and curry (not together!)

Cats or dogs?
Both. We have a goldendoodle whom the groomer transformed into a weird-looking poodle, but we'll keep her!

Do you have a favorite Smurf?
I don't remember many names, just the fun little figurines.

Chutes and Ladders or Candy Land?
Snakes and Ladders (I learned to play in Saudi Arabia where I had lots of British friends).

What’s the best thing about life right now?
Watching it all unfold.

Any advice for aspiring writers?
Remember you have something unique to say. Your work can only get better if you keep at it.
Thank you, Caroline! 
If you'd like to win a MAY B. ARC, just leave a comment below, telling Caroline how amazing her interview was and how much you'd love to win a copy of her book. I'll keep the giveaway window open until Friday, August 12, Midnight PST. Then I'll pick a winner using*

Got it? Okay, fly away to the comments!

*Oh, and yes, I'll open this contest internationally. Caroline and I both have international backgrounds, so it would be unfair to leave out our international friends, right? This is the kind of fine print I like to write.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Wonderful interview, Caroline and Amy! I wish I called it Snakes and Ladders:)

    I'd love to win the ARC of MAY B. That cover really pulled me in.

  3. Great interview! Caroline, I learned of your book through mutual friend, Brian Herrera, and was instantly intrigued. Looking forward to reading it!

  4. Great interview!

    What an intriguing premise for a book, Caroline - I can't wait to read it.

    I thought August 13 sounded really far away, but it's less than 10 days! Where, oh where, did my little summer go?

  5. I'll try this again, this time with my prepositions working properly. ;)

    Amy, thank you for your lovely words. I'm truly honored.

    Krista, starting today, you SHOULD call the game Snakes and Ladders!

    Cat, Brian is a dear and a fabulous person to know in the book world. He's a send all sorts of his friends my way, for which I'm grateful.

    Jodi, thanks. This character is very close to my heart. She's far more brave than I.

  6. Nice interview- Thanks for sharing with us, Caroline. Saudi Arabia, huh? What were you doing over there? I thought it was a big deal to move to PA for a few years. ;)

  7. Hi Kelly,
    My dad was with the Corps of Engineers and built an army base in Saudi. We had a wonderful time there.

  8. Great interview, Caroline! [Did I do okay, Amy ;)]

    But wow, Snakes and Ladders? Fascinating! And creepy at the same time. :D

    I'd love to win May B.!

  9. I love these questions. But how can she not remember the names of the Smurfs? Or maybe it was just me who watched the show a million times while growing up. :D

  10. Lovely interview, Amy and Caroline.
    I never knew there were 2 names for Snakes/Chutes and Ladders.
    Would love to win May B.

  11. Would love to read MAY B! I've only read a couple of novels in verse (Love That Dog/Hate That Cat, Sharon Creech), a genre which I discovered through reading Amy's blog here, and can't wait to read more. Have been very interested in this one since ages ago when Amy first mentioned the lovely Caroline Starr Rose and her upcoming novel in verse . . .but if I don't win, I'll be sure to get my hands on a copy this winter!

    Thanks for sharing!

    And, Amy, thanks for including me and others overseas! (You're always so great that way.)

  12. PS - It was snakes and ladders here in Nova Scotia too!

  13. "Your work can only get better if you keep at it" it so encouraging! Awesome interview; and I really, really want to get that book!!!

    And wow, I know an author who actually got a book published! Awesome!

  14. Just to chime in here -- we called Chutes and Ladders Snakes and Ladders in Hong Kong, too. I went to British school so it must be a British and Canadian thing. :) I'd forgotten I used to call it that until I read your answers, though, Caroline!


  15. I'm loving the Snakes and Ladders conversation.

    Stina, if I think about it, I can come up with a few Smurfs. I loved that show, too.

    So glad to see international interest. Thanks, guys!

  16. Amy, love the format.

    Caroline, thank you for your speed interview. I played snakes & ladders with my boys--it was part of a game-box that we got when they were little.

    I'd love to read a MG book that has a female MC. Please please please! Most of what I have here is boy-fantasy.

    I need something to aspire because I'm working on edit #5 of book #1. :-)

  17. I've heard tons of great things about this book from others with the ARC. Can't wait until it comes out.

  18. Laura Ingalls Wilder + Hatchet? Sounds interesting. And the cover is lovely, and I'm trying to find books for my aunt's elementary classroom. Thanks for the interview and giveaway!

    susanna DOT pyatt AT student DOT rcsnc DOT org

  19. OK, Amy, you know I'm not supposed to be on the Internet this summer. I'm cheating and on here just so I can enter this contest. You evil Temptress,you! Don't tell my kids. Shhh.... : )

    I've been following Caroline's blog for awhile and can't wait to read May B. myself and to my girls.

    Thanks for an awesome interview. I grew up on Smurfs every Saturday morning. (Smurfette, Brainy Smurf, Papa Smurf, Gargamel, etc.) Thanks a lot, now I'm humming the song and will have it stuck in my head all night.

    I love your WQI posts, Amy. Thanks for the fun! Congrats, Caroline! Your book sounds amazing. : )

  20. Great interview! I look forward to reading the book and I LOVE the cover. Thanks for the giveaway :)


  21. Loved the interview! May B sounds wonderful--it's now on my must read list.

  22. Caroline, we have Saudi Arabia in common! We lived in Riyadh for 2 1/2 years. Lots of hopscotch for me. :) Amy, thanks for the international nod, and I agree with everything youi said about Caroline's blog! I look forward to the book. Will tweet.

  23. Wonderful short interview! Thanks! A book motivated by love and curiosity (and Laura Ingalls Wilder) is one for me, and I'm so looking forward to reading this.

  24. The only Smurf I can name is Papa Smurf! But I'm eager to get to know all the characters in May B :)

  25. Watching it all unfold. I love this perspective, Caro!

    Thanks for the fun interview, y'all!

  26. You all are so kind. Thanks for making my day.

    Irene, you're kidding me! How has this not come up in conversation before? We were in Tabuk from 1977-1980. It was wonderful.

  27. Awesome interview. Love the comment about what the groomer did to the dog! I've had that happen with my Bichon :)


    themgowl at gmail dot com

  28. I've heard lovely things about this book and I can't wait to read it. What's wrong with green chile and curry together?!

  29. Melissa, maybe I should give the chile/curry combo a try!

  30. Superbly superb interview! And I would LOVE to get your ARC!!!

  31. Love your interview! And what a beautiful cover.

  32. Now I'm getting nostalgic over Chutes and Ladders.

    Great interview. I can't wait to read May B.

  33. I'm a curry fanatic too! In fact, my husband JUST sent me a yellow curry recipe I need to try. I would LOVE May B.

  34. Perfect interview. I'm aching to read this book. One of my favorite books is Out of the Dust, which was also written in verse.

    debnance at gmail dot com

  35. It took until I was in high school to consistently spell "maybe" correctly. I'm not quite sure why, but it always gave me the slip. It's entirely possible that "May B" is completely unrelated to "maybe". But maybe not. Either way, I would love to have the chance to find out! Thanks for your generosity, Amy!

  36. No, not unrelated at all! May B. is teased for her reading (she's dyslexic). The kids at school chant "Maybe May B. can/Maybe May B. can't". It becomes the way she views herself, as mediocre.

  37. OMG I'm so glad I got here in time! Yes, I want MAY B! Caroline's book sounds so amazing, and I continue to be impressed with her writing journey. Go, Caroline, go!

  38. What a fun interview! I especially liked how Caroline said the best thing about life is watching it unfold. I need to be more like that. Here's hoping to win. *fingers crossed*
    My Blog

  39. Great intreview! would love the chance to read this book, I love prairie stories.

    rebecca191 AT

  40. I would love to win a copy for my husband's 5th grade classroom! :) sounds like a great book!


Summer Recap

Summer!! has been a crazy whirlwind.  Are we actually starting school again in a few weeks? UNBELIEVEABLE. In the middle of June I finished...