The Month of Zephram Mondays
In the Kingdom of Zephram, everyone is magical - everyone except for the Royal Quadruplets: Tom, Lizzie, Ned and Nell. It's tough to be different, even if you are a prince or a princess. And Tom, Lizzie, Ned and Nell are treated differently by everyone in the kingdom! But when evil Prince Persius takes over the kingdom, it's the non-magical Tom, Lizzie, Ned and Nell who are the only ones left to try and save the day. Through their funny and challenging adventures they and those around them come to a better appreciation of the children's skills - and the big difference you can make by being different!
More about the book and the Author
PRETEEN FANTASY ADVENTURE NOVEL: THE MONTH OF ZEPHRAM MONDAYS
Author Leslie A. Susskind Takes Kids Ages 8-14 on an Exciting Voyage That Includes Magic, Suspense and a Host of Interesting Creatures
All of the residents of the Kingdom of Zephram are magical -- everyone but the royal quadruplets, Tom, Lizzie, Ned and Nell. But when the evil Prince Persius steals the Golden Ball -- what keeps all of the citizens magical -- it's up to these four ordinary children to save their country. "The Month of Zephram Mondays"(Good Manners Kids Stuff Press, 2009, $8.99), a new preteen fantasy adventure by first-time novelist Leslie A. Susskind, combines all of the elements readers age 8-14 desire in a work of fiction: an exciting voyage that includes magic, suspense, and a host of interesting creatures. The book is available through Amazon.com or TheMonthOfZephramMondays.com.
About The Author
Susskind, a Philadelphia-area marketing and advertising executive by day and children's book author by night, has been dreaming of "The Month of Zephram Mondays" for quite some time. The idea first entered Susskind's mind many years ago as a college creative writing assignment.
The time between Susskind's college years and the execution of "The Month of Zephram Mondays" was clearly well spent. The characters are very well drawn out -- each with attributes young booklovers can easily relate to. The story takes the reader on a journey of exhilarating twists and turns, and includes a true variety of "creatures" that keep one riveted from start to finish. And, most importantly, Susskind includes two altruistic messages in her maiden novel: First, whatever the Zephramites earned, made or did on the other days of the week was theirs to keep. But on Mondays, all work was for the good of the country. A second message Susskind shares is that children should not discount those who are different from them on the outside.
"The Month of Zephram Mondays" ends with the royal quadruplets in a conundrum. This cliffhanger will be resolved in Susskind's next Zephram tale, "The Tale of Time Warp Tuesday," available in late 2010.
For more information on "The Month of Zephram Mondays," or to purchase your own copy, visit Amazon.com (The Month of Zephram Mondays: The very first of the Zephram Tales)or TheMonthOfZephramMondays.com. Readers are encouraged to share their comments and become fans on The Month of Zephram Mondays Facebook page.
An Interview with Leslie
here are some Q&As for Zephram: Thank you very much for the interview opportunity. Here are the answers to your questions.
1) My education and experience: I'm a busy working mom who lives outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with my husband and two daughters. My love of reading started in kindergarten and I've rarely been without one or more books by my side or on my bedside table! Around the time I was in 5th grade, I decided I wanted to write books, and I've been writing ever since. I graduated with a B.A. in English Literature from Gettysburg College. My career has been spent in marketing and advertising as a Creative Director during the day, and as writer by night.
2) About "The Month of Zephram Mondays" and why I wrote it: Back in college I drew together many story threads and ideas I'd written down and collected, and started "The Month of Zephram Mondays" for a creative writing assignment. Needless to say, it's gone through many changes since then. I had loved all of the Narnia books and Chronicles of Prydain and other fantasies like those, and I wanted to write a story that children could fall in love with and easily feel a part of, just as I had.
3&6) Messages in the book & lessons I wanted to convey: Messages and lessons that I wanted to come across loud and clear in the book range from hard work really does pay off, and people who are different can be just as capable as you are, to cooperation and working as a team are vitally important to success in our lives. And, even if you're young and different from everyone else, you have an important part to play.
4) Why do pre-teens seem to be interested in magic, fantasy and the like? I think people of all ages like to lose themselves in fantasy worlds where the characters get to experience or do things far beyond anything that can happen in our normal lives. For pre-teens, they are just starting to figure out who they are as people and coming up against all kinds of peer pressure and anxieties. A fantasy world gives them a break from all the pressure. It allows them to see how other people handle the bullies, or the popular girls. Many times it lets them read about the underdog being the champion, and they can easily imagine themselves as the hero or heroine. Sometimes the characters seem so real, they're the friends or family they wish they had!
5) Tell us about the four main characters and the challenges that they will face: The main characters of the book are the Royal Quadruplets: Tom, Lizzie, Ned and Nell. Most fantasies or fairy tales feature the unlucky princess (or prince) or the unlikely hero/heroine who is of a different social class than others in the book and must prove his-or-her-self. The Quadruplets combine both of those descriptions: they are royal and under attack, but they are also different than everyone else around them and discounted because they are not magical. As heir to the throne, Tom is the smart, responsible quadruplet. Lizzie is the thoughtful, practical one. Ned is the jokester and Nell is the easy-going one. They tease each other but rely completely on each other; they are very isolated not just because they're royal, but also because they're different. When Zephram is attacked and held for ransom, they are the only ones who can go find help. On their journey and through their encounters, they find themselves becoming the unlikely heroes of the story and they and everyone around them come to find a real appreciation of their non-magical strengths.
7) This book has a certain "twist." What is the twist and why did you include it? There are several twists and turns to the story but the most important one is that when the Royal Quadruplets finally reach their destination and find the people they think can help them save Zephram aren't able to, these ordinary children truly rise to leadership roles.
8) Where can interested readers get a copy of the book? "The Month of Zephram Mondays" is available on Amazon (The Month of Zephram Mondays: The very first of the Zephram Tales ) or at www.themonthofzephrammondays.com
9) What plans do I have for the future? I am finalizing the second Zephram Tale, "The Tale of Time Warp Tuesday," available Fall 2010.