On the podcast: Christopher Paul Curtis

This week, we had the extreme pleasure of talking with Christopher Paul Curtis, the award-winning author of many books for young people, including the crucial The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 and Bud, Not Buddy. He joined us via Skype from his home in Canada to discuss his latest middle grade novel, and the newest installment in the Buxton Chronicles, The Journey of Little Charlie. Listen to the episode here, or wherever you get your podcasts!

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About the book: Twelve-year-old Charlie is down on his luck: His sharecropper father just died and Cap'n Buck — the most fearsome man in Possum Moan, South Carolina — has come to collect a debt. Fearing for his life, Charlie strikes a deal with Cap'n Buck and agrees to track down some folks accused of stealing from the cap'n and his boss. It's not too bad of a bargain for Charlie... until he comes face-to-face with the fugitives and discovers their true identities. Torn between his guilty conscience and his survival instinct, Charlie needs to figure out his next move—and soon. It's only a matter of time before Cap'n Buck catches on. 

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One of the things that struck me the most about our converation with Christopher, was hist vast knowledge—and love of—history. He says that reading about the Civil War during his family's weekend trips to the library was what made him a reader as a young boy. He shares that his great hope for any of his books is that a child reads them and wants to learn more. 

We talk about a lot more: from Christopher's childhood in Michigan, to the events in Canadian history that helped to create Buxton. Pop in your headphones and give our latest episode a listen, and then tell us what you thought! Tweet us @scholastic and leave us a review on the iOS Podcasts app!