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MacCready, Robin Merrow 1959(?)–

MacCready, Robin Merrow 1959(?)–

Personal

Born September, c. 1959; father a realtor and innkeeper, mother an educator and writer; married; children: two sons. Education: Wheelock College, B.A. (education), 1981. Hobbies and other interests: Skiing, listening to music, spending time with family.

Addresses

Home and office—ME. Agent—Wendy Schmalz, Wendy Schmalz Agency, Box 831, Hudson, NY 12534. E-mail—[email protected]

Career

Educator and novelist. Currently teacher of reading and writing in upper elementary grades.

Awards, Honors

Edgar Award for Best Young-Adult Novel, Mystery Writers of America, and Best Books for the Teen Age designation, New York Public Library, both 2007, and Best Books for Young Adults designation, American Library Association, 2008, all for Buried.

Writings

Buried, Dutton Books (New York, NY), 2006.

Sidelights

With the publication of her first novel for teen readers, Maine teacher Robin Merrow MacCready was honored with the Edgar Award for Best Young-Adult Novel from the Mystery Writers of America. In Buried she introduces Claudine Carbonneau, a high-school senior who lives with her alcoholic mother in a trailer parked near the rocky Maine coast. Claudine's role as caretaker has imposed emotional stresses on the teen; in addition to resenting the woman for her lack of responsibility, Claudine also feels responsible for her mother's problems. When her mom disappears from home, the seventeen year old seems initially relieved and she sets about cleaning up the home. As the days pass, however, she begins to engage in compulsive behavior while also pretending to others that everything is okay. As readers learn from flashbacks, letters, and characters' self-talk, Claudine begins to crumble, revealing a complex secret

at the core of MacCready's "cautionary, empathetic story of codependency," in the words of Booklist contributor Debbie Carton. Calling Buried "an absorbing psychological study," a Kirkus Reviews writer praised the author's "spare style," writing that it "holds the reader's interest" in a novel that should appeal even to reluctant readers.

In an online interview with Cynthia Leitich Smith for Cynsations, MacCready had the following advice for aspiring novelists: "If you want to be published you have to be willing to take some heat. Listen to your critiques and make changes if there is validity, but don't listen to the people who want to discourage you. Politely ignore all those that think you're wasting your time. Also, I think SCBWI [the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators] is a great organization for beginning writers. I know I wouldn't be published without it."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, October 1, 2006, Debbie Carton, review of Buried, p. 49.

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, October, 2006, Loretta Gaffney, review of Buried, p. 82.

Kirkus Reviews, July 15, 2006, review of Buried, p. 726.

School Library Journal, November, 2006, Riva Pollard, review of Buried, p. 141.

ONLINE

Cynsations,http://www.cynthialeitichsmith.blogspot.com/ (February 27, 2007), Cynthia Leitich Smith, interview with MacCready.

Robin Merrow MacCready Home Page,http://www.robinmerrowmaccready.com (May 23, 2008).

Robin Merrow MacCready Web log,http://the5randoms.wordpress.com/ (May 23, 2008).

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