The Dragonflies and the Explorers were super excited to meet author Kara LaReau. We started off with Kara reading to us her book Mr. Prickles: A Quill-Fated Love Story. She shared with us that most picture books have cute cuddly animals in them and she wanted to try something different. So, she thought about animals that were not cute and cuddly, a porcupine it was! The name Mr. Prickles popped into her head and so did Miss Pointypants and the story took off from there. She also shared with us that as a child she had a hard time fitting in because she wanted to be friends with kids who didn't really want to be friends with her. She then found friends that loved her for who she was, which is just like Mr. Prickles.
Did you know that Kara started coming up with stories when she was in kindergarten? She would tell a story to her mom, who would write them down. Kara would draw the pictures for the story. Then they would make a cover for it and staple all the pages together. She remembers that one of those stories was called The Man and the Plant. We discovered that she writes in an office at her house, which is where she was Skyping to us from. Her favorite part of writing a book is coming up with a good idea and figuring out how to solve a problem that she has come across in her story. She also loves coming up with funny names for her characters.
We had lots of questions about The Infamous Ratsos. We were super excited to find out there are going to be 4 books in the series! The next in the series will be called, The Infamous Ratsos Are Not Afraid. We can't wait for it to come out. We were wondering about what it was like to win the Geisel Award for the Infamous Ratsos.
We asked Kara if she hides anything in her books. We were the first people to ever ask her that! She says that she does write little jokes to herself in her books. Plus in Mr. Prickles, illustrator Scott Magoon, put in some funny details in his pictures. To see what she means, check out Skunk's neckwear.
Our final question. In Hawaii we like to eat shave ice. If you could eat shave ice with any author, who would it be? Her answer? Kate DiCamillo, who is a friend of hers that she hasn't seen in awhile and was just thinking about earlier in the day. She also shared with us that frozen lemonade is popular where she lives. It sounds yummy!
Thank you so much Kara for spending time with us. We had so much fun with you and loved learning from you.