Carlton, Susan 1960-

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Carlton, Susan 1960-

PERSONAL:

Born 1960; married; children: two daughters. Education: Attended college in Oregon; Columbia University, earned degree.

ADDRESSES:

Home—MA. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Magazine writer and editor.

WRITINGS:

(With Coco Myers) The Nanny Book: The Smart Parent's Guide to Hiring, Firing, and Every Sticky Situation in Between, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1999.

Lobsterland (novel), Holt (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor to periodicals, including Parents, Parenting, Seventeen, Self, and Mirabella. Contributing editor for Mademoiselle magazine.

SIDELIGHTS:

A contributor to such publications as Parenting, Seventeen, and Mirabella, Susan Carlton is also the author of Lobsterland, her debut young-adult novel. The work centers on an intelligent, frustrated sixteen-year-old girl living off the coast of Maine. "I started with the idea that we all feel, at some point, trapped in the wrong place and the wrong family," Carlton stated in discussing Lobsterland on her home page. "A small island in Maine seemed the perfect backdrop for fermenting that sense of desperation and for hatching an elaborate escape plan."

Lobsterland concerns Charlotte, the harried eldest child in a dysfunctional family. Charlotte must care for her younger brother and sister while her mother medicates herself with pills and her father, who may be wanted by federal authorities, spends his time playing computer games. The desperately unhappy teen, who also suspects that her boyfriend has been cheating on her, decides to leave her island home and enroll at boarding school. As Charlotte races to fill out application forms, her literate, biting responses to a series of essay questions "evoke a realistic picture of a girl who yearns for independence but secretly fears letting go of the familiar," noted a contributor in Publishers Weekly. Deborah Stevenson, writing in the Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, observed of Lobsterland that "readers will revel in Charlotte's sharp, funny company."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, November, 2007, Deborah Stevenson, review of Lobsterland, p. 133.

Kirkus Reviews, July 15, 2007, review of Lobsterland.

Publishers Weekly, September 24, 2007, review of Lobsterland, p. 74.

School Library Journal, Heather E. Miller, review of Lobsterland, p. 120.

ONLINE

Susan Carlton Home Page,http://www.susancarlton.com (October 31, 2008).