Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Purple Daze is an explosion: a moment in time smashed into a thousand glinty, sharp-edged pieces, precise and dazzling.”
  Tim Wynne-Jones, author of The Uninvited

"I stayed up half the night reading Purple Daze and didn’t want it to end. Ziggy, Mickey, Cheryl, and Phil have found a permanent home in my heart."
  Valerie Hobbs, author of Sheep, California Young Reader Medal

"Sherry Shahan took me right back to the 60's with this deftly-written, politically charged novel-in-verse. Be warned -- "Purple Daze" will put a spell on you, too!"
  Ron Koertge, award-winning author of Strays
"Shahan's PURPLE DAZE puts us on the front lines of funky times, from Los Angeles to Da-Nang. A far out, implosive, psychedelic trip that ends in indictment. This is spectacular."
  Rita Williams-Garcia, author of “One Crazy Summer,” National Book Award Finalist, Newbery Honor, Scott O'Dell Historical Award, Coretta Scott King Author
“Shahan captures the tension and desperation of ‘60s young people who were caught up in the events, while also highlighting the chaos with song lyrics.  PURPLE DAZE will enable young adults to identify on a personal level with The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien (Houghton Mifflin, 1990), which is often included in curriculum lists.”
  VOYA, April 2011
Complete review: week-6/

“It’s a fast read and the story is really thought consuming.  It also incorporates history.  I could not stop reading until I was finished.”
  Taylor Lovett, Duxbury Free Library Teen Galley Reader
"Sometimes a book can surprise you. Sometimes you open a book and don’t know what to make of it. Sometimes you stay up until midnight reading a book and then stay up until three, reading it again. Sometimes all three are true, and (for me) that was the case with YA novel PURPLE DAZE by Sherry Shahan"
  Book End 1/18/11

"A raw and stunning portrait of the 60’s. For those who lived them, Purple Daze will bring your past to life. For those who didn't, this story will make you feel as though you did."
  Catherine Ryan Hyde, author of 14 novels, including Pay It Forward

"Compelling authenticity and emotional force....“Part history, part teen survival, Shahan drops you into the Vietnam era with compelling authenticity and emotional force.”
  Wendelin Van Draanen, author of The Running Dream and Flipped

More reviews....and they keep coming:)
March 4:
March 18 (Aimee/YA Librian. Email:
March 22 (Katy/History teacher in Bakersfield/Community College):
“The novel is, in a word, unforgettable.  In three words, it’s a beautiful experience.”
KIRKUS (Feb. 2011) “ . . . . a valuable, vivid snapshot of how Vietnam shaped a generation.”
Complete KIRKUS review:
As leading-edge baby boomers turn 65, this novel in verse tracks their coming of age in 1965, a year marked by social and political unrest, racial violence and the official onset of the second-longest war in U.S. history. Readers’ guides are six white, working-class, suburban Los Angeles teens—Ziggy, Cheryl and Nancy, paired with Mickey, Don and Phil—fearing and longing for change to rock their world. Soon Phil receives his draft notice and joins the Marine Corps; Mickey joins the Navy to escape an alcoholic single dad and dead-end future; opportunist Don watches from the sidelines. Left adrift and dissatisfied, the girls start to break free of the passive role assigned to them. A kind English teacher (readers will notice parallels to Nikki Grimes’s Bronx Masquerade, 2001) helps Ziggy find her footing; Nancy discovers the anti-war and feminist movements. Interspersed with historical tidbits and individuals—recent Vietnam history, civil rights struggles, Lyndon Baines Johnson, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr.—this loosely chronological collage is most effective in the letters Phil, mired in Vietnam, sends to Cheryl. Because they don’t affect the characters directly, other historical events depicted—civil rights especially—have little impact. Nonetheless, a valuable, vivid snapshot of how Vietnam shaped a generation.(historical timeline) (Historical fiction. 14 & up)

Friday, March 25, 2011


Shelley Coriell's writing blows me away! And judging by her now 6th finalist win for a RWA GOLDEN HEART and her debut YA, WELCOME CALLER, THIS IS CHLOE publishing from Abrams in Spring, 2012, Shelley is going to be a favorite for many readers.

Back in March 2010 I posted Shelley Coriell double-finals in the YA category of the 2010 RWA Golden Heart Awards and predicted that Shelley would soon be a YA superstar. I was right!

In 2010 Shelley won RWA Golden Heart Awards for her manuscripts BLOOM and WELCOME CALLER, THIS IS CHLOE. It is extremely rare for a writer to double-final, but then again, Shelley is an extremely talented writer. Shelley has been a  Romance Writers of America Golden Heart finalist in 2009, 2008 and 2007, as well as 2008 Golden Pen winner and the2008 Kiss Of Death Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence winner!

Shelley is the ultimate professional who understands that persistence and butt-in-chair writing and revising brings about success. Congrats, Shelley!

Thursday, March 10, 2011


I am thrilled to announce that I will be creating poetry anthologies for KANE MILLER BOOKS

Kira Lynn at Kane Miller Books acquired world rights to Dare to Dream... Change the World, an illustrated anthology from Jill Corcoran, containing biographical and inspirational poems that seek to inform, inspire, and ignite middle graders to imagine, persevere and to act. The collection, which is due in fall 2012, will contain works by 30 poets, and is slated to be the first in a series of poetry anthologies. Ronnie Ann Herman and Jill Corcoran at The Herman Agency did the deal.

Herman Agency Client Michael Rex on "The Celebrity Apprentice"

Michael Rex on "The Celebrity Apprentice"


MARCH 9, 2011 #1 Bestselling Author/Illustrator Michael Rex will be appearing in an episode of NBC's series, “The Celebrity Apprentice,” airing March 13th (9/10 PM ET/PT).

In the episode, the star-studded cast featuring celebrities such as Gary Busey and LaToya Jackson will split into two teams and engage themselves in one of the most prominent niches in the book publishing industry - children’s literature. Both teams will author an original children’s picture book to help raise money for charity. Their works will be evaluated by actress Robin Holly and by Marshall Cavendish Children’s Books publisher Margery Cuyler.

The winning celebrity team will present their charity with a check. Last season, “The Celebrity Apprentice” raised over $1.25 million dollars for charity.

Michael Rex, who has created over 20 books for children, joins one of the teams to provide illustrations for their book.

"The Celebrity Apprentice" is produced by Mark Burnett Productions in association with Trump Productions LLC. Mark Burnett, Donald Trump, Eden Gaha and Page Feldman are executive producers. Nancy Gunn is the co-executive producer.


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