Marty McGuire News!

I’ve had a busy spring so far, and so has my chapter book character, third grader Marty McGuire.Here’s a Marty update:

The second book in the series, MARTY MCGUIRE DIGS WORMS, came out April 1st, and there have already been some super-nice reviews, including this one (that came with a star!) from Kirkus:

Floca’s cheery black-and-white illustrations match the upbeat theme of the tale, and with at least one per brief chapter, they break up the text pages nicely. Marty’s first-person commentary, sometimes just a tiny bit sarcastic, splendidly conveys the eroding innocence of middle-graders.A quick, amusing read with an easily digestible environmental message; it is a perfect match for its young intended audience.  

School Library Journal called Marty a “spirited youngster” (she liked that) and  said this:

Packed with eco-friendly ideas, this realistic, plot-driven early chapter book is a welcome addition to Earth Day or environmental units.

And I especially loved this review in a Washington Post round-up of Earth Day books

It’s hard to think of cafeteria composting as the topic for a good chapter book, but Messner and Floca pull it off. It’s the characters who make this book entertaining, whether it’s Marty’s wildlife rehabilitator mom or her inventive Grandma Barb, who thinks both worm slime and duct tape have essential uses.
Gotta love a book review that mentions both worm slime and duct tape, don’t you think?


Meanwhile, the first Marty McGuire book has been nominated for the Rhode Island Children’s Book Award, along with some other books that I love.  You can see the full list here.


And how exciting is this?  Marty has her own book club!


School library media specialist John Schumacher created the poster above for the Marty McGuire Book Club! He and fourth grade teacher Colby Sharp are well known for their blogs celebrating the best of children’s books, and they’ve declared May “Marty McGuire Month,” inviting readers to dig into one or both Marty books and then join them for an online Twitter chat starting at 8pm EST on May 23rd, using the hashtag #MartyMcGuire. I’ll be sure to be online that night, too, answering any questions about Marty or writing chapter books or really anything. Check out this post on “Watch-Connect-Read” or this one at “SharpRead” for all the details, and join us if you can!

4 Replies on “Marty McGuire News!

  1. I am interested in taking part in your summer writing workshop (when I am able to). I am a 7th grade Spanish teacher in Cranford, NJ. I am currently working on a Spanish reader/novelita for Spanish language learners (at Middle School/ High School level). There is a desperate shortage of resources of this genre out their for second language learners. Although I do have a little experience getting published I have never done anything entirely on my own. I know you may not be able to critique my actual writing, but I could use some insight on where to steer the plot.

    Thank you for doing this!!

  2. I am interested in participating in your summer writing camp whenever possible. I teach 5th grade — all subjects — at a public charter school in Rhode Island. I’m looking forward to writing a little this summer!