Monday, 2 March 2009

Reader's Snapshot / Mo Johnson

Mo Johnson's debut novel, Boofheads was released late last year. It told the story of three life long friends and the different choices they make as they near the end of high school. When I originally mentioned Boofheads in one of my In My Mailbox entries, there was an overwhelming response from the readers. It made sense that she would be a great person to be the focus of an Author Spotlight. You can read my review of the book here and Mo's interview about the novel will be posted on Wednesday.

1. Which book is memorable from your teen years?
The Go Between by LP Hartley. I was just caught up in that book. I still feel a myriad of emotions when I read it. And oh how I wish I’d written the opening line: "The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there."

2. Describe your high school English teacher in three words...
I had six high school English teachers so to answer your question I found myself thinking about the one who inspired me most in Year 10 and I cannot remember her name but see her clearly in my mind’s eye as a ‘silver haired bun’.

3. Your book of the moment?
Tamar by Mal Peet.

4. What do you use to mark your page when reading?
I’m a dog earer.

5. Favourite place to read?
In bed, when it’s raining, with a bowl of mashed potatoes and a glass of wine.

6. Favourite word?
Ethereal or Inscrutable, neither of which apply to me, unfortunately.

7. Favourite book store?
Meg Ryan’s ‘Shop Around the Corner’ in the movie You Got Mail. In real life it’s Bloomin’ Books at Caringbah, Sydney because it’s totally dedicated to Children or Lesley McKay’s Woollahra, Sydney because they have a really inviting children’s section where you just want to stay all day.
8. Character you wish you had created?
This is so hard. I would change my mind on this every day but I’d always consider Hairy MacLary or Alex Rider from children’s fiction or Bridget Jones or Jack Reacher from adult fiction.

Bonus Question: Which Aussie-ism completely boggled your mind when you first arrived from Scotland?
Bring a plate.’ The first time I was asked to a BBQ the invite said ‘BYO chair, alcohol and plate’. The first two I could almost understand but then I thought, if the people throwing this party are short of crockery and can’t solve the problem by buying paper plates, they’ve no business having a BBQ.
When my Aussie husband explained what it actually meant, I found myself wishing my first idea had been right. I thought the whole idea of going somewhere else for dinner was that you got a night off cooking.
After 18 years in Oz, I quite like the ‘bring a plate’ thing. It means you can invite more people and share the load. It’s especially good if any of the guests have a special dish that everyone loves.

Boofheads may be released in the US later as it is currently under consideration with Candlewick Press, I think if they are smart they'll sign Mo quick smart. Boofheads is released in Australia by the awesome folks at Walker Books.
Mo Johnson's Website -

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