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Wheels of Change

My Writing and Reading Life: Darlene Beck Jacobson

Darlene Beck JacobsonThe Children’s Book Review | October 17, 2014

Darlene Beck Jacobson

Darlene Beck Jacobson

Darlene Beck Jacobson has loved writing since she was a girl. She wrote letters to everyone she knew and made up stories in her head. She loves bringing the past to life in stories such as WHEELS OF CHANGE, her debut novel. Darlene’s stories have appeared in CICADA, CRICKET, and other magazines. When not writing, Darlene enjoys baking, sewing and tea parties.  She also likes hanging around forges watching the blacksmith work magic. She’s never ridden in a carriage like the one in the story, but hopes to one day.

Her blog features recipes, activities, crafts and interviews with children’s book authors and illustrators. She still loves writing and getting letters.  Check out her website at: www.darlenebeckjacobson.com.

Wheels of ChangeLatest published book …

WHEELS OF CHANGE, a historical MG novel set in 1908 Washington, DC.

You wrote it because …

… of two facts I learned while researching my family tree. One was that my paternal grandmother’s father was a carriage maker in Washington DC at the turn of the Twentieth Century. The other was that grandma received an invitation to a reception held at the White House by Theodore Roosevelt. She attended that reception and met TR. My premise became: What if a girl – who adores her father’s carriage making business – sees the arrival of the automobile and the threat it poses on his livelihood. What would she do to help save the business? Would she go all the way to the President? The story grew from there.

Best moment …

So far it’s been the positive response and feedback I’ve gotten from so many people regarding the book. It’s so gratifying to have people from different walks of life enjoying it.

Your special place to write …

For the first draft it’s on the sofa with a fresh pad of paper and pencils. I don’t go to the computer until I have a complete manuscript.

Favorite bookshop …

The bookstore at Harvard Square in Cambridge, MA. It’s got multiple levels, comfy tables and chairs and a food court. There’s also an entire wall of magazines…many of which I’ve never seen anywhere else.

Currently reading …

PANDEMIC by Yvonne Ventresca (YA), BLOND OPS by Natalie Zaman and Charlotte Bennardo (YA), FERAL by Holly Schindler (YA), FLEABRAIN LOVES FRANNY by Joanne Rocklin.

All-time favorite children’s book you didn’t write …

There are so many wonderful books out there. Besides the ones above, I’ve really enjoyed THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN, COUNTING BY 7’S, ONE DAY AND ONE AMAZING MORNING ON ORANGE STREET, CODE NAME VERITY, WONDER, FLORA & ULYSSES.

An author you idolize …

Again, there are so many: Sharon Creech, Joanne Rocklin, Jennifer Donnelley, Kate DiCamillo, John Green.

Favorite illustrator …

Doris Ettlinger, Vesper Stamper, Peter Brown, E. B Lewis, Floyd Cooper, to name a few. Our NJSCBWI has a huge collection of fabulous illustrators who deserve recognition. You can see many of them highlighted each Saturday at www.writingandillustrating.com

A literary character to vacation with …

I’d love to vacation with Anne Shirley from ANNE of GREEN GABLES on Prince Edward Island. I’ve never been there and would love to see her home.

Wheels of ChangeWheels of Change

By Darlene Beck Jacobson

Racial intolerance, social change, sweeping progress. It is a turbulent time growing up in 1908. For twelve year old EMILY SOPER, life in Papa’s carriage barn is magic. Emily is more at home hearing the symphony of the blacksmith’s hammer, than trying to conform to the proper expectations of females. Many prominent people own Papa’s carriages. He receives an order to make one for President Theodore Roosevelt. Papa’s livelihood becomes threatened by racist neighbors, and horsepower of a different sort. Emily is determined to save Papa’s business even if she has to go all the way to the President.

Ages 8-13 | Publisher: Creston Books | Sept. 23, 2014 | ISBN-13: 978-1939547132

Be sure to visit Theresa Wallace-Pregent’s website for Darlene Beck Jacobson’s last stop on her Wheels of Change blog tour. Discover more Historical Fiction books like Wheels of Change, by Darlene Beck Jacobson, by checking out our reviews and articles tagged with Historical Fiction Books and be sure to follow along with our Writing and Reading Life series.

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The Children’s Book Review, named one of the ALSC (Association for Library Service to Children) Great Web Sites for Kids, is a resource devoted to children’s literacy. We publish reviews and book lists of the best books for kids of all ages. We also produce author and illustrator interviews and share literacy based articles that help parents, grandparents, teachers and librarians to grow readers. This article was written and provided by a guest author.


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