Last year, the Junior Library Guild chose the second book in
Wil’s new ‘Twisted’ series, ‘House of a Million Rooms,’ as one of their Main
Selection titles. We are now very pleased to announce it has also received
their prestigious Gold Standard Award.
The JLG is a monthly book club founded in 1929 and is based
today in New York City. It’s stated mission is to “…help thousands of K-12
school and public libraries acquire the best new children’s and young adult
books.” Past editorial selection committee members
have included Eleanor Roosevelt and Carl van Doren, and other featured titles
include children’s classics such as ‘Horton Hears a Who!’ by Dr. Seuss and
‘Little House in the Big Woods’ by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
For more information about the Junior Library Guild—
The fifth installment in Wil’s new
middle-grade supernatural series, ‘The Girl Who Grew Nasty Things,’ has been
released. It was on NetGalley’s list of most-requested middle grade titles for
more than three months! Here’s the publisher’s summary—
“Maddie Dragonette doesn’t like people.
She prefers to be among the rare plants she grows in her greenhouse—which can
be made to cause great pain to others. When Maddie doesn’t get a part in the
school play, she turns to her beloved plants to seek her revenge. What happens
when one young girl’s rage and hatred grow out of control?”
Review quotes from NetGalley and
“A brilliant cautionary tale!” –Mallory
“This was a fun and exciting book to read
with young children.” –Jacyln D.
“Maddie Dragonette is one mean girl.”
“If you have kids who love creepy
stories, this is the one for them.” –Laurie E.
“It was just as expected: a twisted tale
of discovery. Well done!” –Jaime F.
“It shows what rage, jealousy and
resentment can do to you when you make them your top priority.” –Faiza N.
“Wil Mara has done a great job of
bringing the character to life and setting her into a story that does not have
a happy ending….” –Denice L.
The ‘Twisted’ stories have been rapidly growing
in popularity among school and public librarians, due in part to the series’
appeal among reluctant readers. The second book in the group, ‘House of a
Million Rooms’, was a featured pick of the Junior Library Guild less than two
weeks after its publication. And in the wake of the success of the series, Wil
was recently honored with the 2019 Literary Lion Award.
To read the first two chapters of ‘The
Girl Who Grew Nasty Things’ now, click here—
The fourth book in Wil’s new middle-grade series, ‘Twisted’, releases on Tuesday, October 1st. It’s called ‘Where Did My Family Go?’ and is every bit as creepy as the first three, per the publisher’s description—
“Michael Cooper wakes one morning to a horrifying reality…his family isn’t the same as when he went to sleep the night before. For that matter, neither is anything else. What’s worse, everyone thinks he’s lost his mind and that everything’s just fine.”
The New Jersey Association of School Librarians will be holding its fall conference on December 9th and 10th, and Wil is going to be one of several featured speakers. The topic of his talk will be ‘The Myth of the Reluctant Reader, Part IV: The Roots of the Problem.’ Wil has been researching the topic of reluctant readers for the better part of the last ten years and has presented on the subject at past NJASL conferences and elsewhere. Other speakers at this year’s conference include keynotes Jacqueline Woodson and John Schu. The conference will be held at the Hilton Hotel and Meeting Center in East Brunswick, NJ.
More details can be found here—
For contact, please use firstname.lastname@example.org. All emails are answered within 24 hours.
On Wednesday, October 16, The College of New Jersey will host a very special event—Jacqueline Woodson, ‘New York Times’ bestselling author and the current Library of Congress National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, will be speaking to students both in person and via live webstream around the country. The focus of Jacqueline’s presentation will be her inspirational ‘Reading = HOPE x CHANGE’ program, and Wil is going to act as on-stage moderator. Wil has been the moderator and host at numerous literary events, including the annual ‘Letters About Literature’ award held by the New Jersey Center for the Book, as well the more than 200 school appearances as an author.
Along with her talk, Jacqueline will respond to questions both from attendees and those submitted via online forums. If you wish to participate in this wonderful event via livestream, please visit—