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The Purple Wave - Interview with children's book author Burt Kempner

Burt Kempner is a children's book author from Philadelphia. This spring he is going to introduce the 4th and final book in a series about endangered species. We have conducted an interview with Burt about the new book of the series.

(Illustrator: Cal Howard)

What are your launch plans for Spring 2020? What can readers expect from this?

I plan to release The Purple Wave in late April/early May 2020. I'm awaiting the interior illustrations and would like to get some advance reviews in ahead of publication

Prior to this, please tell us more about the whole series?

The School of Animal Magic Adventures series concerns an action team consisting of a young, questing female elephant, her best friend, a wisecracking cattle egret and a mysterious white lion who's an emissary from the stars. In each adventure they're sent to help a threatened species using a mixture of knowledge with a little magic thrown in. The previous books in the series are Maisha the Educated Elephant, Dolphins in Distress and The Salmon Who Wanted to Run.

How difficult or challenging do you consider writing a book?

Writing children's books is a joy for me. I may carry around some ideas in my head for months or even longer, then one day I'll sit down at the keyboard and with 48 hours I have my book. I'm in the Zone the entire time and it's liberating as hell.



What is your writing style/approach in describing the problem or explaining its seriousness to young readers?

The challenge in writing about endangered species for children is how you address the topic. You don't want to diminish the seriousness of the situation, yet you don't want your young readers to feel despair and hopelessness. My books are exciting and contain humor, but they do get the message across, and I end each one with concrete steps the kids and their parents can take to help out the species. I want my readers to be active, not passive, when it comes to protecting animals.

In the recent volcanic eruption on Whakaari (White Island in New Zealand), it is a fact that millions of endangered species are threatened. Have you written anything about how to overcome these types of challenges in your previous books?

The Purple Wave is the fourth and final volume of The School of Animal Magic Adventures series, so I won't be writing about endangered species (although I never say never). I touched on the effects of climate change in previous volumes, including loss of habitat, droughts, famines and fires. I intend to continue writing about this, whether for children or adults or both I'm not yet certain yet.I know that despite our best efforts, many species we love will be lost forever within 60 years and we may well follow suit thereafter. But many can and will be saved. It's the supreme task for activists, artists and good-hearted citizens -- a sacred trust. We will lose much but we can still win more than we think possible.

The Purple Wave - Interview with children's book author Burt Kempner Reviewed by JaamZIN on 8:33:00 AM Rating: 5
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