HomeBooks by AgeAges 4-8My Writing and Reading Life: Kristen Kittscher, Author of The Tiara on the Terrace
My Writing and Reading Life_ Kristen Kitschier, Author of The Tiara on the Terrace

My Writing and Reading Life: Kristen Kittscher, Author of The Tiara on the Terrace

Kristen Kittscher | The Children’s Book Review | January 18, 2016

It’s no mystery why her middle grade debut, The Wig in the Window, was an Indie Bestseller, celebrated by School Library Journal (starred review), Kirkus, and Publishers Weekly, and was named to ten Best of Year lists, including “Best Books of the Year” by A Mighty Girl. Kristen is a graduate of Brown University, self-proclaimed “childhood spy,” and former 7th grade English teacher who wrote the book with her former students in mind. Kristen lives in Pasadena.

Latest published book …

My middle-grade mystery, The Tiara on the Terrace

You wrote it because …

After their heroism in The Wig in the Window, my tween sleuths Young & Yang & I (and their fans) wanted more adventures! I was inspired by my hometown of Pasadena’s Tournament of Roses for the setting and plot.

Your special place to write …

I have a small detached office in my backyard under a gorgeous live oak tree. When I’m back there, I feel like I’m in another world.

Necessary writing/creativity tool …

When I sold my first book, my best friend gave me a special figurine that belonged to her late father, Frank Gibney, a writer whom I greatly admired. It’s a little pewter knight holding a shield as he goes into battle. He had a whole collection of them and called them his “writing knights.” I keep this one on my desk at all times to help me charge forward

Favorite bookshop …

Any local indie bookstore is going to be a favorite of mine, even if I haven’t been there yet. However, one of the most stunning bookshops I’ve ever been in is El Ateneo in Buenos Aires, which has the most bookstores per capita of any other city in the world.

Currently reading …

CONFIDENTIALLY YOURS by Jo Whittemore, the first in a hilarious new middle grade series about advice columnists at a middle school paper.

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

Ha! I love the image of a writer so confident they choose their own book as their all-time favorite! Indeed, mine is far my all-time favorite. Many are in the running, but I’ll go with E.L. Konigsburg’s FROM THE MIXED UP FILES OF MRS. BASIL E. FRANKWEILER since it directly inspired me to write funny mysteries.

An author you idolize …

Rebecca Stead

Favorite illustrator …

I have many, so I’ll plug supertalented Liz Wong, an illustrator whose debut picture book QUACKERS is out in March. I could look at her drawings all day!

A literary character to vacation with …

I’m not sure, but definitely NOT Hunter S. Thompson, though I suppose he was real, wasn’t he?

Best moment …

The moment I met my husband at the hilariously named “Art Rock Café” when we were exchange students in Bologna, Italy.

Connect with Kristen Kittscher …


The Tiara on the TerraceThe Tiara on the Terrace

Written by Kristen Kittscher

In this funny, clever novel, perfect for fans of Pseudonymous Bosch and Gordon Korman and a companion to The Wig in the Window, tween sleuths Sophie Young and Grace Yang go undercover at Luna Vista’s Winter Sun Festival to catch a murderer before he—or she—strikes again.

Sophie Young and Grace Yang have been taking it easy ever since they solved the biggest crime Luna Vista had ever seen. But things might get interesting again now that everyone is gearing up for the 125th annual Winter Sun Festival—a town tradition that involves floats, a parade, and a Royal Court made up of local high school girls.

When Festival president Jim Steptoe turns up dead on the first day of parade preparations, the police blame a malfunctioning giant s’more feature on the campfire-themed float. But the two sleuths are convinced the mysterious death wasn’t an accident.

Young and Yang must trade their high tops for high heels and infiltrate the Royal Court to solve the case. But if they fail, they might just be the next victims.

Ages 8-12 | Publisher: HarperCollins | 2016 | ISBN-13: 978-0062227980

Available Here: 


Book Trailer

Discover more books like The Tiara on the Terraceby Kristen Kittscher, by checking out our reviews and articles tagged with  and Mysteries; 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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