In this poignant, realistic, contemporary YA by a state master list star, perfectfor fans of Sarah Dessen and Gayle Forman, a young songwriter builds a substitute family with her friends in place of the broken family she grew up with.
Minerva has been raised by her single mother after her father left them both. On her 17th birthday, she is shocked to discover that he has been trying to keep in touch, but her mother has been sabotaging his attempts. Furious at her mom, she begins to investigate her dad, a famous marine biologist, only to discover that he has a new family, including a beloved, and perfect, stepdaughter--a girl Minerva already knows and despises.
As she makes her way, trying to build her performing and songwriting career, her jealousy takes over and threatens to derail her life completely. It is only through the efforts of her best friend, Fin, and the introduction of Hayes, a new young man in her life, that she is able to see clearly who she is and who makes up her family.
Mary Amato is an award-winning children's book author, songwriter, musician, puppeteer, and poet. She writes for children of all ages, and is beginning to focus on YA. Her first YA novel was Guitar Notes. Mary lives with her family outside Washington, DC, where she also performs regularly, singing and playing her own songs. Mary is a popular speaker and runs numerous workshops for teachers and students, including many on all aspects of creative writing, even songwriting. The author lives in Silver Spring, MD. You can visit her online at www.maryamato.com.
Flash Interview with Mary Amato
My preferred genre is realistic fiction, but I have no doubt that I’ll try my hand at a lot of different genres. I love to learn and there’s nothing like pushing yourself to try a new genre to stimulate learning.
Get Happy is my second YA novel which includes original songs. I am a songwriter and a music addict and wanted to explore characters who yearn to express themselves by writing songs.
I wrote the lyrics and music for six songs that appear in Get Happy. First I made recordings of myself singing the songs, then I asked a talented teen, Jamey Geston, to learn and record the songs. I really wanted my readers to be able to hear a teen voice instead of my voice.
Are you a Technology Buff:
Nobody has asked me this question. I love it because I can talk about my music-related technology. I have some music gadgets that I wouldn’t want to live without:
- Digital instrument tuner (it clamps on and tunes for guitar, bass, and uke)
- Garage Band (I have a Mac Air so I can take it anywhere)
- Blue Icicle (a digital interface with a USB that allows me to plug a good quality microphone directly into my computer.
- Condenser Microphone (much better sound for recording than a regular mic)
- Pick-ups on my instruments (which allow me to plug directly in)
- Mixing Board and Speakers