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3 COPIES OF JERSEY TOMATOES ARE THE BEST (That means 3 winners)
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Jersey Tomatoes Are the Best stars a tennis player and a ballet dancer. Do you play tennis and dance, or did you have to do a lot of research in order to write this book?
I absolutely love tennis and have played since I was in third grade. It’s funny, I’ve never thought of myself as a “jock,” but in my first two novels, as well as the one I’m writing now, the main characters are athletes. It’s easy for me to engage imaginatively in a sports scene, especially if it’s a sport I’ve played, like tennis or soccer.
Now ballet … that’s another story! I can barely touch my toes or move my feet to music, so … no. I don’t dance. I relied heavily on interviews, books, videos, web resources, you name it, to write the ballet sections of the book. Luckily, I’m a big ballet fan, so it was a real labor of love.
It wasn’t intentional! For me, stories begin with a character, and I just heard the voice of a 14-year old, telling me her story, in my first book, Brett McCarthy: Work in Progress. I think it helped that my kids are teens right now, so that world is part of my everyday.
I also adore YA books. If you asked me to list my favorite books of all time, I think most of my list would come from my teen-reading days. Those books imprinted on me: The Witch of Blackbird Pond; Johnny Treman; Escape From Warsaw.
Tell us about the book trailer for Jersey Tomatoes. How was it produced and who are the actors?
I’m so proud of the trailer because it’s a real “young adult” production! The filmmaker, Jasper Lowe, is a teen in my town who’s won all sorts of awards for his films, and even started his own production company.
The girls are also friends from town, and they look exactly as I imagined the main characters from the book. Lucy Morrell, the tennis player, is a strikingly beautiful extremely athletic girl, while Mackenzie Bowerman, the dancer, is fair and petite and gives a real sense of fragility. I think they bring the main characters, Henry and Eva, to life in the trailer.
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