James Patterson
We ask mega bestseller James Patterson why he's giving away his books, and talk to him about some controversial statements he's recently made.


KIRKUS REVIEW

In order to cope with the terrors of middle school, Rafe Khatchadorian teams up with his imaginary friend, Leo, to become a troublemaking legend.

There’s a fine line between a class clown and a smart aleck. Class clowns make big dopey gestures to make up for superficial insecurities, leading to inevitably poor life decisions. As Conan O’Brien once said: “The class clown is killed in a motel shoot-out.” Smart alecks are different. There’s a lot of potential in every one of them. And there’s a lot of potential in Rafe. As his efforts to break every rule in his new school’s handbook progress, Patterson and Tebbetts illuminate the psyche of a scared, angry kid who is smart, creative, bored and ever so over the “teach ’em what’s on the test” mentality the U.S. education system has so ruthlessly perfected. Rafe lashes out against an establishment that is designed against him and a shattered family unit, and it’s hard to push past his defense systems. But once through, readers will discover the best kind of child: one that is intelligent, artistic and brave. The authors weave these ideas through a world perfectly described through a 12-year-old’s point of view, complete with humor and jokes to be expected from that bracket. Witty illustrations and wacky scenarios will rope young readers in, but the emotional undercurrents will keep them hooked.

A satisfying and progressive tale with real sweetness at its center. (Fiction. 8-12)


Recent Interviews

Libba Bray

author of LAIR OF DREAMS

August 25, 2015
LAIR OF DREAMS by Libba Bray In Lair of Dreams, the second installment of Libba Bray’s bestselling young adult Diviners series, after a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O'Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. Now that the world knows of her ability to "read" objects, and therefore, read the past, she has become a media darling, earning the title "America's Sweetheart Seer." But not everyone is so accepting of the Diviners' abilities....Meanwhile, mysterious deaths have been turning up in the city, victims of an unknown sleeping sickness. Can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld and catch a killer? “Weaving together a chilling mystery with a truly elusive solution, several poignant love stories, agonizing injustice, terrifyingly monstrous dreams, and even a cameo by legendary psychiatrist Carl Jung, this installment wraps enough up to satisfy but clearly sets the stage for more,” our reviewer writes in a rare starred review. “How will readers stand the wait?” View video >

Cara Nicoletti

author of VORACIOUS

August 18, 2015
VORACIOUS by Cara Nicoletti As a young bookworm reading in her grandfather's butcher shop, Cara Nicoletti saw how books and food bring people to life. Now a butcher, cook, and talented writer, Nicoletti serves up stories and recipes inspired by beloved books and the food that gives their characters depth and personality in Voracious: A Hungry Reader Cooks Her Way Through Great Books. From the breakfast sausage in Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House in the Big Woods to chocolate cupcakes with peppermint buttercream from Jonathan Franzen's The Corrections, these books and the tasty treats in them put her on the road to happiness. “All in all, a pleasure for hungry readers,” our reviewer writes. We talk to Nicoletti this week on Kirkus TV. View video >

Upcoming Kirkus Interviews

September 1, 2015
Vanessa Diffenbaugh
September 8, 2015
Amy Stewart
October 27, 2015
Adam Makos
author of DEVOTION