Tuesday, August 9, 2016
What Do These Books Have in Common?
These books don't look like they have much in common, do they? One is a mystery for kids involving a treasure hunt through New York landmarks and clues in the forms of poems,. The other is fiction for adults about women working in the financial industry, based on the author's own experience. It turns out that they were written by the same author, Maureen Sherry.
And, unusually, the children's book was published (although not necessarily written) first. While there is no shortage of authors of fiction for adults trying their hands at children's books, particularly picture books (e.g. Harlan Coben, Toni Morrison, Margaret Atwood, John Grisham, inter alia), it is rarer for an author of children's books to then write for adults.
As for the books themselves, I definitely enjoyed Walls Within Walls. Hand it to a child who loves From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Although the characters are not as fully realized as I'd like, and the plot point of the parents getting swept up in their newfound wealth strained credibility, especially for the mother, the plot was a fun romp through New York. A sequel set in London is to be published next year. I am only about one-third of the way through Opening Belle (I love the title!) but so far, it's an engrossing look at the male-dominated world of finance and how women operate in that world. As someone who frequently used to be the only woman in a roomful of male lawyers, I can relate.
I hope Ms. Sherry writes many more books - for both children and adults.