It’s a Mystery, Pig Face!

February 2017

It's a Mystery, Pig Face!

Another #MGDEBUTS Novel – Interview with SIREN SISTERS author Dana Langer

 

I love a good mythological MG novel!

And Siren Sisters by Dana Langer ticks off all the boxes for me.

 

 

How about this for an amazing description:

 

A soon-to-be siren finds herself responsible for the lives of her sisters–and the fisherman they curse–in this haunting debut novel.

Now that I know the truth, I sometimes picture my sisters in headlights, the way they would have looked on that cold February night, armed with shovels and pickaxes, and digging in the graveyard.

Lolly Salt has three beautiful sisters. When they’re not in school or running their small town’s diner, they’re secretly luring ships to their doom from the cliffs of Starbridge Cove, Maine. With alluring voices that twelve-year-old Lolly has yet to grow into (not that she wants to anyway) the Salt sisters do the work mandated by the Sea Witch, a glamorously frightening figure determined to keep the girls under her control. With their mother dead after a mysterious car accident, and their father drowning in grief, the sisters carry on with their lives and duties until a local sea captain gets suspicious about the shipwrecks.

On the day before her birthday, Lolly watches in helpless horror as her sisters are lured themselves by curse-reversing fishermen–and suddenly it’s up to her and her best friend Jason to rescue the sirens of Starbridge Cove.

 

Some background about Dana:

 

 

Dana Langer holds a BA in creative writing from Brandeis University where she received the Dafna Zamarripa-Gesundheit Fiction Prize. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter and works as a high school English teacher. Siren Sisters is her first novel. Check her out online at MonstersinLit.Blogspot.com and on Twitter @DanicaLanger.

Now on to the interview!

 

I’ve always loved mythology, but ambivalent about its portrayal of women and girls, so I am so excited for SIREN SISTERS! I’d love to know how the seed for this amazing concept was planted in your imagination!

SIREN SISTERS was born of my curiosity about those characters in mythology who find themselves on the periphery of the story. For example, I enjoyed the Percy Jackson series, but I wondered what it would be like if told from a girl’s perspective and centered the so called monsters instead of the gods and heroes.What’s the one middle grade novel you’d take with you to a desert island?

What’s the one middle grade novel you’d take with you to a desert island?

If I had to pick just one middle grade to read and re-read, I would choose A WRINKLE IN TIME. Reading it as an adult, I find some of the language a bit dated, but there is a lot to unpack in the story, and I love Meg’s character and her dynamic with her little brother.So here’s my dream dinner: you can host a dinner party and invite six middle grade authors (living or dead). Who would you invite and why? Bonus points if you tell me what you’re cooking for them!

How do you plan to celebrate your book’s launch?

I will be celebrating the launch of SIREN SISTERS at Books of Wonder in New York City on January 7th (from 1-3pm.) It should be a warm, cozy, kid-friendly time with lots of books and baked goods on a cold winter afternoon.What projects are you working on next?

So here’s my dream dinner: you can host a dinner party and invite six middle grade authors (living or dead). Who would you invite and why? Bonus points if you tell me what you’re cooking for them!

Reading this question, I’m laughing and realizing just how bad my anxiety is as even the thought of having to eat an imaginary dinner with authors I admire makes me really nervous. Maybe we’d need to just grab a drink instead. I’m also going to cheat a little and name one children’s literature scholar. Ok, so I’d choose Jason Reynolds, Rita Williams Garcia, Debbie Reese, Madeleine L’Engle and E.L. Konigsburg. And I’ll invite my friend and fellow 2017 debut author Jodi Kendall because she’s been an incredible support to me throughout this process. I’d order a stout. Or a Vodka on the Rocks.

What are you working on next?

I’m working on another middle grade, also a loose retelling of a myth. It’s very much in the drafting stage, but, as always, it will involve mythology, science, and twelve year old girls finding their place in the story.

Thanks Dana! I can’t wait to read this book!

Author of Children's Literature

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