mary pearson

What YA Novel Should Our Book Group Read?

13262783One of my friends recently asked me to suggest a YA novel for our book group, and I relished the chance.  The women in our group are avid readers with thoughtful, perceptive observations, and they help me discover new books—fiction and nonfiction—that I’d never find on my own.  Of different generations and backgrounds, they bring unique, nuanced perspectives, and I appreciate the moments we disagree in our interpretations of a novel as much as I do the times when we agree.

17564519I came up with… Continue reading

Double Voices



Before I wrote Birthmarked, I worked on a novel that contained five points of view, all following different members of the same family in crisis. It was a worthy experiment, but I swore afterward that I’d never try it again. I couldn’t make all the perspectives equally compelling. I felt like I was shortchanging each character, and the collective honesty I was aiming for didn’t resonate enough.

Imagine, then, my surprise when I started writing The Rule of Mirrors and discovered I could not write it from only… Continue reading

Summer Reading

IMG_4707We’re half way through July and deep into the summer. I had my first summer visit to an ice cream truck this week, and when I’m not writing, I’m reading. Now’s the perfect time to curl up with your toes pointed towards a window screen and get lost in another world. Want some ideas?  I read with a YA heart, so naturally, it wanders.

Sweet by Emmy Laybourne is a dark comedy about a teen who joins her friend on a weight-loss cruise, but the artificial sweetener hyped to… Continue reading

Unknown Girl

foggy bathroom mirror

Mirror Mind

Part of the trouble with writing a new book involves unlayering a new side of yourself, a thinking you’ve never tried. These characters haven’t existed before in this way, for this book, and the sole place to look them up is inside, in the foggy places.

For me, it’s like meeting an unknown version of myself and gradually becoming her. My Vault 2 people are back there in my mind. I saw their exterior actions and speeches when they showed up in the first draft, but now as… Continue reading