Getting kids to read shouldn’t be a challenge. The age-old attraction of reading is all in the story. A good conflict, a puzzling problem and accessible language: Now that’s something young readers will set their clocks for. In this blog, I share my adventures and enthusiasm as a children’s/YA author in writing mysteries. Thanks for visiting–and don’t forget to glance over your shoulder now and then. A plot twist may be coming at you!
Pictured (left): my 2019 Orca Y/A, Edgar Allan Poe-themed novel Tick Tock Terror, of which Booklist said, “Jackson’s gripping, first-person, plot-driven novel asks readers to consider self-confidence vs. over-active ego; right vs. wrong…A suspenseful addition to high-low collections.”
Find out about more of my novels, including my roller-coaster-themed The Big Dip, which, along with Tick Tock Terror, I’m using in online creative writing classes during this era of Covid at a Vancouver secondary school.
“Scottish-born Vancouverite Melanie Jackson is a veteran writer of mysteries for young people, and it shows: she hits the right notes with this mystery for tweens and early teens. Not only does the mystery thread keep you coming back; the plot also explores all-too-relevant inequities and injustices, while educating young readers about the coolness of classical music and musicians — all at a quick tempo and in a light hearted tone.
“…all the hallmarks of a good mystery…with contemporary relevance, a complex web of clues, an array of suspects, and a satisfying solution.”
Talk about an Ode to Joy! And here’s an excerpt of a review by Johanna Hickey of the Vancouver Heritage Foundation:
“It’s delightful and the whole plot is so clever, as is the title. I loved the music theme. …And I really liked the book’s example of the almighty big developer crushing the little people. That is so true in this city and is allowed to happen time and time again. Hopefully a book such as this will help make young people aware of this serious problem.”
From the BC Teacher Librarians’ Association, Judy Cottrell: “Exciting. I enjoyed reading it.”
TD Canadian Book Week 2018 Author
I was tickled pink, quite pinkly pink, in fact, to be selected a 2018 TD Canadian Book Week author. Thanks to the volunteers and schools who welcomed me so warmly to Quebec. My book showcased on the tour was Medusa’s Scream (Orca), a favourite of this native Aberdonian because of the Scottish history connection.
Oh, and as an eating enthusiast, a favourite because of the food theme, as well: the protagonist is a piemaker. A male protag, yet, so against stereotype!
Read all my blog posts, including Breaking up isn’t that hard to do–at least, not if we’re talking paragraphs. It’s advice I share with middle-graders in the creative writing unit I teach.
And hey, don’t wait another Tick Tock minute! Follow me @melaniejackson