August 2021

Events Calendar

Middle Grade Author Panel

What a great way to kick off getting back to in-person bookstore events! I'm excited to be part of this panel of amazing women and talented writers. Come join us as we chat about our new titles, answer your questions and, of course, sign books!


Follow this LINK for more info.

When:    Saturday, August 21, 2021

              at 1:00 pm

Where:   Brick & Mortar Books

              7430 164th Ave NE, Suite B105

              Redmond, WA, 98052

              Hope to see YOU there!

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Blog Posts


If you've ever wanted to meet the exceptional scientists, who helped inspire my Explorer Academy series, now's your chance!

From July 5th - 9th we're celebrating EXPLORER ACADEMY RECRUITMENT WEEK. Each day this week, tune in to the Nat Geo Books Facebook page at 4 PM (PST), 7 PM (EST) to hear a different explorer talk about his/her passion, share adventures, and answer your questions. Here's the stellar lineup:

Mon. July 5th: Rae Wynn-Grant, Large Carnivore Ecologist

Tues. July 6th: David Gruber, Marine Biologist

Wed. July 7th: Nizar Ibrahim, Paleontologist

Thurs. July 8th: Gab Mejia, Mountaineer & Photographer

Fri. July 9th: Erika Bergman, Deep-Sea Oceanographer & Submersible Pilot

I've had the pleasure of speaking to students with two of these explorers, Erika Bergman and Nizar Ibrahim. They have some riveting stories! Both also helped in my research for the series and know a few of my secrets. Uh-oh!

Also, for a fun summer experience, check out EXPLORER ACADEMY ADVENTURES, a new online program that will have young explorers (ages 8 - 11) solving mysteries, conducting experiments, and cracking codes. Kids will go on missions and tackle challenges, as they learn about oceans, rainforests, outer space, and more. They can even create action plans for becoming the explorers of tomorrow, just like Cruz and his friends!

To learn more about EXPLORER ACADEMY ADVENTURES, head to:

Have a great summer, everyone! Keep reading and don't forget to Dare to Explore!

Come join me and four of my amazing children's author/illustrator pals for a FREE virtual event next Friday, March 26th from 5 - 6 pm, PST (8 - 9 pm, EST).

Hosted by Third Place Books in Seattle, WA, kid-lit creators Kathryn Thurman, Dana Sullivan, Jing Jing Tsong, and Barbara Davis-Pyles and I will be LIVE on Zoom to share some of the ways we've stayed inspired during these stressful times and how you, too, can spark that same

fire in your writing or illustrating (hint: there will be cats involved in my portion of the evening). Plus, we'll talk about our new books, give away some swag (someone's getting an Explorer Academy tote bag!), and take your questions. Attendees will be able to purchase signed copies of our new releases, including the latest in my Explorer Academy series, Book 5: The Tiger's Nest.

I hope you'll plan to join us for this lively, uplifting family-friendly evening. The event is free but you'll need to register. Follow this LINK to sign up!

I'm excited to be able to share that the fifth book in the Explorer Academy series: THE TIGER'S NEST is now available! In the story, Cruz must find TWO pieces of the cipher containing his mom's secret formula, and this leg of the journey has him traveling from the Seychelles to India to ... well, I'd better not reveal too much here. Let's just say he's in for plenty of surprises when an old foe returns. Cruz is as focused as ever in his quest to find all of the fragments of the formula, but his stubborn determination to go it alone may end up costing him a higher price than he ever expected to pay. As usual, look for the codes and hidden messages within the text and illustrations. There is much to find!

For me, this was the most emotional book in the series to write, so far. In thinking through the issues Cruz must face, I found myself contemplating life and death, and all the change these things brings to our lives. My dad died during the making of this book and it brought home to me the delicate and precious nature of family. My father is a big reason why I am a writer today. He was always supportive of my writing aspirations and goals and I am so glad I got to share the adventure of writing this series with him. I used to tell him all about my ideas for this book and I think he would have liked the end result!

If you'd like a signed copy of THE TIGER'S NEST, you can order one from The Neverending Bookshop. Call the store at (425) 415-1945 or email owner Annie Carl at

As always, thank you for reading. Dare to Explore!