I’m pretty excited to tell you that JAMES PATTERSON has stopped by the blog today with a guest post! He’s talking about his new book, Homeroom Diaries!
I’ve flipped through the review copy I was sent, and I love how the book combines diary-like writing with tons of drawings and doodles. It looks really interesting and seems ideal for high schoolers.
Guest Post: James Patterson on the #HomeroomDiaries
About Homeroom Diaries
In James Patterson’s first highly illustrated “diary fiction” story for teens, the mega-bestselling author’s most endearing and original teen heroine ever proves that everyone can use a helping hand once in a while.
Margaret “Cuckoo” Clarke recently had a brief stay in a mental institution following an emotional breakdown, but she’s turning over a new leaf with her “Happiness Project”. She’s determined to beat down the bad vibes of the Haters, the Terror Teachers, and all of the trials and tribulations of high school by writing and drawing in her diary. And when life gets really tough, she works through her own moments of uncertainty through imaginary conversations with her favorite literary characters.
Cuckoo’s also got a nearly impossible mission: she, along with her misfit band of self-deprecating friends (who call themselves “the Freakshow”) decide to bridge the gap between warring cliques and “bring the Nations together”. Not everyone is so willing to join hands and get along, but Cuckoo never stops smiling…until one of her closest friends, pushed to desperation by a Hater prank, decides that enough is enough.
Homeroom Diaries Excerpt
I’m sitting in homeroom scribbling and surviving.
I was reading Pride and Prejudice a minute ago, and I’m really into the book. I just love that Janie Austen.
Now I’m imagining myself meeting a boy in my personal version of Pride and Prejudice. His name is Laurence Darcy, and he’s the younger brother of Fitzwilliam Darcy, better known as Mr. Darcy, and he is just so charming and British and Jane Austen-y that it’s like I’m in homeroom heaven!
We start chatting at a society ball at Netherfield Park.
Laurence Darcy is pretty dreamy. I’m just loving all those great nineteenth-century manners!
Hmm. I may be in love. Stay tuned.
Laurence Darcy gets me through the rest of homeroom and, let’s face it, the rest of my classes, until lunchtime.
Hold your fire, Teachers, Barbies, and all Haters, I think as I walk through the cafeteria doors. I’m immediately hit in the face with the greasy, smelly reminder that the caf offers almost nothing that hasn’t taken a long and luxurious bath in the FryDaddy. It’s sick. The Activists are lobbying for a salad bar, and I say, “Dare to dream, Activists!” I really love their hopeful energy and vision for a brighter tomorrow!
Guest Post from James Patterson
“It’s kind of amazing how there can still be room in your heart to laugh, even when something really scary and sad has happened.” – Cuckoo Clarke
I’m a big believer that humor can be a great way to deal with tragedy. The main character of Homeroom Diaries, Cuckoo Clarke, has been through some serious stuff. Her mom left her, she had a stint at a mental institution, she’s staying with a foster mother, and she’s having trouble with bullies – “haters” – at school. Through it all she looks for the funny side of any situation, aided by her amazing sense of humor.
Her imagination also helps her cope. She has a menagerie of imaginary friends. She knows they’re not real, but they help her escape from any situation. She can jump in a limousine with her favorite celebrity or go back to Edwardian England to hang with Laurence Darcy (younger brother to Mr. Darcy, of Pride and Prejudice fame). It’s not a strategy that works for everyone, but it does for Cuckoo. And it makes for some pretty funny reading.
Not to say Cuckoo doesn’t have real friends, too – if she didn’t, the book might be more sad than funny. Her friends, the Freakshow, share her wild sense of humor and they’ll try to turn anything into a joke, whether it’s Cuckoo’s messed up family situation or their crazy teachers or some of the really cruel things their classmates do to them. It’s not that they can’t take anything seriously, it’s that they know that misery can be overwhelming if you don’t find some way to tame it. And that laughing with your friends can cure all kinds of blues.
Homeroom Diaries Tour
Follow the HOMEROOM DIARIES tour for sneak peeks at the book from author James Patterson!
About James Patterson
In January, 2010, The New York Times Magazine featured James Patterson on its cover and hailed him as having “transformed book publishing.” Time magazine named him “The Man Who Can’t Miss,” and he is a two-time Children’s Choice Book Award “Author of the Year” nominee, a designation decided on by more than 15,000 children and teen readers.
In the past three years, James Patterson has sold more books than any other author (according to Bookscan), and in total, James’s books have sold an estimated 260 million copies worldwide. Since 2006, one out of every seventeen hardcover fiction books sold was a Patterson title. He is the first author to have #1 new titles simultaneously on The New York Times adult and children’s bestsellers lists and is the only author to have five new hardcover novels debut at #1 on the list in one year—a record-breaking feat he’s accomplished every year since 2005. To date, James Patterson has had nineteen consecutive #1 New York Times bestselling novels, and holds the New York Times record for most Hardcover Fiction bestselling titles by a single author (76 total), which is also a Guinness World Record.
From his James Patterson Pageturner Awards (which rewarded groups and individuals for creative and effective ways of spreading the joy of reading) to his website ReadKiddoRead.com (which helps adults find books that kids are sure to love) to his regular donations of thousands of books to troops overseas, Patterson is a lifelong champion of books and reading. His critically acclaimed Maximum Ride series debuted on the New York Times bestsellers list at #1 and remained there for twelve straight weeks. The series has so far made ninety-four cumulative appearances on The New York Times bestsellers lists, proving that kids of all ages love page turners. He captured the attention of boy readers with Daniel X series, and his third series for readers of all ages debuted in December 2009 with Witch & Wizard, which spent five consecutive weeks atop the New York Times bestsellers list.
Patterson is the creator of the top-selling new detective series of the past dozen years, featuring Alex Cross and including the Hollywood-adapted “Along Came a Spider” and “Kiss the Girls,” starring Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman. He is also the creator of the #1 new detective series of the past five years, featuring Lindsay Boxer and the Women’s Murder Club, from which the ABC television drama series was adapted. He has authored books behind six films on the Hollywood fast-track, including the upcoming Maximum Ride movie forthcoming from Avi Arad, the producer of X-Men and Spiderman.
He is the author of novels — from The Thomas Berryman Number (1976) to Honeymoon (2005) — that have won awards including the Edgar, the BCA Mystery Guild’s Thriller of the Year, the International Thriller of the Year award, and the Reader’s Digest Reader’s Choice Award. And, he has won a Children’s Choice Book Council’s Children’s Choice Awards “Author of the Year” award (2010).
One of Forbes magazine’s Celebrity 100, James made a guest appearance on the popular FOX TV show “The Simpsons” in March, 2007.
So, what do you think about James Patterson’s new series, Homeroom Diaries?!