The Children’s Book Review | April 18, 2018
The Children’s Book Review: Which five words best describe The Parker Inheritance?
Varian Johnson: Puzzle mystery, contemporary, historical, fun!
If you had to take a vacation with one of the characters from The Parker Inheritance, who would it be? Why?
Mr. Parker, the mysterious man behind the puzzle that Candice and Brandon are trying to solve in the book, is SUPER RICH…so I’m thinking he’d be the perfect person to travel around the world with. That being said, he’s also really reclusive, so I guess I’d have to find him first….
What has been the best reaction from a reader, so far?
One reader who is familiar with all of my works told me that this was the best book I’ve ever written. I really appreciated hearing that—I think the book is pretty good, too!
What’s on your nightstand? Any books?
I have a huge stack of books on my nightstand. Close to the top are THE BELLES by Dhonielle Clayton and THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB by Elizabeth Eulberg.
For your writing energy: sugar or salt, tea or coffee?
Sugar (gummi bears) and coffee! It’s a great way to start the day!
Writing tools: computer, pen and paper, or all of the above?
I usually use a computer when writing a novel, but I still break out the pen and paper when I’m brainstorming a new project.
Can you tell us one more thing we may not know about The Parker Inheritance, your writing style, or yourself?
The Parker Inheritance originally began as two novels—a puzzle mystery and a multi-generational story—but neither was strong enough to stand alone. It wasn’t until I combined the ideas that everything clicked in place.
Written by Varian Johnson
Publisher’s Synopsis: When Candice finds a letter in an old attic in Lambert, South Carolina, she isn’t sure she should read it. It’s addressed to her grandmother, who left the town in shame. But the letter describes a young woman. An injustice that happened decades ago. A mystery enfolding the letter-writer. And the fortune that awaits the person who solves the puzzle.
So with the help of Brandon Jones, the quiet boy across the street, she begins to decipher the clues. The challenge will lead them deep into Lambert’s history, full of ugly deeds, forgotten heroes, and one great love; and deeper into their own families, with their own unspoken secrets. Can they find the fortune and fulfill the letter’s promise before the answers slip into the past yet again?
Ages 8-12 | Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books | March 27, 2018 | ISBN-13:978-0545946179
About the Author
Varian Johnson is the author of several novels for children and young adults, including The Great Greene Heist, which was an ALA Notable Children’s Book, a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2014, and a Texas Library Association Lone Star List selection, and To Catch a Cheat, another Jackson Greene adventure and a Kids’ Indie Next List pick. He lives with his family near Austin, Texas. You can find him on the web at www.varianjohnson.com and @varianjohnson.
This speed interview with Varian Johnson, author of The Parker Inheritance, was conducted by Bianca Schulze. For similar books and articles, follow along with our content tagged with Intergenerational Conflict Books, Mystery, Puzzles, and Speed Interview.