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Kids' Q&A

Anne Ursu

Describe your latest project.
In The Shadow Thieves, Greek myths are real but nobody knows it, least of all thirteen-year-old Charlotte and her cousin Zee. But they're about to find out. A very evil demigod named Phil wants to overthrow King Hades and rule the Underworld, and to make an army he is stealing and enchanting children's shadows. When Charlotte and Zee become ensnared in Phil's diabolical plan, it will be up to them to journey down to the Underworld and save everyone — living and dead — before it is too late.

The Shadow Thieves is the first book in a trilogy that will take Charlotte and Zee from the Underworld to Poseidon's sea to Mount Olympus.

What fictional character would you like to be your friend, and why?
Definitely Bartimaeus, from the Bartimaeus Trilogy. Sometimes you need a djinni on your side, especially one with a good sense of humor.

If you could choose any story to live in, which story would it be? Why?
The His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman. Mostly because I want a daemon.

Introduce one other author/illustrator you think people should read, and suggest a good book by him/her.
Laura Ruby. Her new book, The Wall and the Wing, is just an absolute delight, so funny and so inventive. The book takes place in a city where nearly everyone can fly — except Gurl, an orphan at Hope House for the Homeless and Hopeless. But Gurl soon realizes she has another power — she can turn invisible...

What was your favorite story as a child?
Anne of Green Gables. I read this so often I think I had it memorized. She was an "Anne-with-an-e," just like me, and I always felt she was a kindred spirit. Also, I had a serious crush on Gilbert Blythe.

What is your idea of bliss?
A good book, a cat on my lap, my husband nearby. Preferably bringing me chocolate chip cookies.

Describe your pets.
We have three cats, Eva, Jalen, and Petra. We didn't intend to have three, but it just seemed to happen. Eva is all cat, but we think Jalen is part monkey (he has a very long tail) and Petra is almost certainly part squirrel (she's awfully squirrelly.)

Why do you write books for kids?
Because they give you a chance to really be a storyteller. And there are no limits; a kid never tells you what you can and can't do in a book — they just want good stories, no matter where those stories take them. And because I love reading them. spacer

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