When you were my age, did you like to read? I loved reading anything. Picture books, fairy tales, chapter books. I also devoured biographies from our school library.
What was your favorite story? I have two:Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak, and Little Blue and Little Yellow, by Leo Lionni.
How do you get your ideas? Several of my book ideas have come from doodling a character. I have many sketchbooks filled with doodles, and every once in awhile, I want to know more about a character, and that becomes a story.
Is it hard to write/illustrate a book? Spending so much time on something that I enjoy does not always feel like work, but it does require constant exploration, writing, editing and rewriting to make a book. It can take many months or years to complete.
Do you have a favorite among the books you have written/illustrated? It’s usually the one I am working on.The Secrets of Ninja School is coming out in March, so that is my current favorite.
What author do you really like right now? There are so many wonderful books out there, so it is hard to choose one! Alison DeCamp’sMy Near Death Adventures (99% true!) is hilarious. And the picture books by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko are lovely.
What advice do you have for a kid who wants to be an author? Read! Also, don’t be afraid of revision.
By Ben Hatke
Thanks for coming back or visiting for the first time. I am excited to be an official part of the promotion for this book. I met Ben back in the spring!
In this book, Jack and Lilly traveling to another world with giants and goblins and other creatures. He went to rescue his sister who was kidnapped by giants. It turns out the goblins are good and the giants are bad. All our worlds are connected and the giants are blocking the doors, so you can’t get between them. Lilly gets hurt but is saved by the goblins. She becomes half goblin and the king! Haha – you thought Jack was going to be the king. I did too, but thanks, for being tricky and keeping the girl the hero.
The most exciting thing is learning all of Ben’s worlds are connected, even Zita! All kinds of characters from other books make an appearance. As a kid, you hope that imaginary worlds connected. It means they could be connected to the real one.
I think this means Ben could have a lot of fun with future books. Lilly and Zita save the world and then go visit Julia! Could this mean they are connected to Cleopatra and Amulet! That would be sooo exciting! Hey, Ben, Mike and Kazu, I know you all know each other – so can you do something like this?
Definitely a fun book. Fantasy lovers will enjoy this. My cousins, my grandfather, my brother and I all enjoyed this! If you haven’t pre-ordered this, you need to get it!
By Ben Hatke
This is a story about a boy getting seeds and growing a garden. He takes care of his sister while their mother works. In fact, they traded their mother’s car for the seeds. (The sister did but he got in trouble for it). They make friends with a girl in the neighborhood. She is very skilled at sword fighting. It seems like a cool but weird skill for a kid. As their garden grows, strange things happen like dragons and vegetables throwing mud at you.
The book ends with a cliffhanger. Thankfully, you won’t have to wait long for the next book. It comes out on Tuesday and my review is tomorrow. (Come back for it)
But back to this one, I really liked it. I like that the girl is strong. I like Ben’s illustrations.
I recommend this to kids that like Renaissance fairs, magic and weird stuff. If you like Cleopatra in Space, you would like this.