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Frequently Asked Questions

As an author, I get lots of questions about my writing. Here are some of the most common ones:

What is the book about?
The Rock and the River is a historical novel, set in 1968. The main character, Sam Childs, is thirteen. His father is a well-known civil rights activist. Sam's older brother, Stick, like many young people at the time, begins to get frustrated with non-violent protest. It seems to him that things are changing too slowly. When Stick joins The Black Panthers, Sam is frightened and confused. Sam looks up to his brother, and wants to follow him, but is unsure if what Stick is doing is right. Sam struggles to figure out where he stands, and how he can both do the right thing and make a difference.

Where can I buy the book? 
You can pre-order The Rock and the River online from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, Waldenbooks, or Simon & Schuster. The book will be in bookstores after January 6, 2009.

Why did you decide to write a book about this topic?
I like to learn about history, which is probably why I like to write about it, too. I've studied the Civil Rights Movement for many years, and I always try to imagine what I would have been doing if I had been alive at that time. Would I have been a civil rights activist? I hope so. Would I have joined The Black Panthers? Maybe. Thinking about those questions, I began to wonder what it felt like to be caught in between the two...

Will you come visit my classroom?
That would be fun. I love to meet my readers!  I visit schools and libraries all over the country to talk about my books and my work as an author. Click here for more information.

Will you write another book about the same characters?
Maybe. I enjoyed writing this story, and it would be fun to figure out what happens to my characters next. Since so many people loved reading The Rock and the River, I'd like to keep the story going for them, too.

What are you like as a person?
I love to read. I also love movies and tv, but I still think books are better. I enjoy music - especially when I can sing or dance along. My family is very important to me, and so are my friends. I like to laugh. I do not like to exercise. My favorite foods are ice cream and french fries, but I try to eat my veggies, too. Do you still want to know more? I have a full bio on my homepage.

Have more questions for me? Email me! I will post the answers to as many as I can. I can be reached at:


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