I first connected with Susan Adrian over Twitter when we discovered we had a mutual connection to UC Davis. Her latest book, FOREVER NEVERLAND, provides an interesting perspective within a familiar tale:

Clover and Fergus are the great-great-grandchildren of Wendy Darling (yes, that Wendy). And now Peter Pan wants to take them to Neverland for the adventure of their lives! But Clover’s a little nervous–she’s supposed to look after her brother. Fergus is autistic, and not everyone makes him feel welcome. What will happen to him in this magical world?

Fergus isn’t nervous at all. To him, Neverland seems like a dream come true! He’s tired of Clover’s constant mothering and wants some independence, like Peter and the Lost Boys have. He wonders, Why can’t the real world be more like Neverland?

Neverland is fun and free, but it’s also dangerous and even scary at times. There are unfamiliar creatures lurking in the shadows and strange sounds coming from the waters.

And then the mermaids start to go missing. . . .

What brought you to Montana? And what, if anything, do you miss about California?

I came to Montana for a job. In 2003, my husband and I were both laid off, with a new baby. We both did a nationwide job search, and I was offered a wonderful job at the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology as a scientific editor, on the Montana Tech campus. My husband later became the Executive Director of the Montana Tech Foundation. We’ve been here ever since. Butte is a wonderful place to raise a family. We do go back to California once or twice a year, for the sunshine and the ocean.

Sounds wonderful. In FOREVER NEVERLAND, one of the characters is autistic. How did this character find his way to you?  

The two characters in FOREVER NEVERLAND came to me together, very strongly. I was interested in the dynamic between the two, with Clover being very overprotective and Fergus wanting help…but also just wanting some space and independence. Once I realized I needed to write both characters’ points of view, I did extensive research to make sure I got Fergus right.

Interesting that both characters showed up at the same time, and dual points of view always offer such great opportunities to show the dynamics between characters. According to your website bio, you once danced in a ballet company. Did any of your experiences find their way into your book NUTCRACKED, debuting in October 2019?

There are many of my experiences dancing that showed up in NUTCRACKED. I was fortunate for that book in that I did not have a time of research to do, at least for the ballet parts. I remember that time very vividly. I was a dancer from the ages of 8 to 16, and I did get to play Clara when I was 13. It was a remarkable experience to relive some of that time and relay those experiences – having mice chase me across the stage, and watching the tree grow – to readers.

I’ll bet! What are some of your current projects?

I am currently working on another middle grade project (working title THE WILD SIDE OF ROWAN MCKINNON) that I’m very excited about. It’s about a girl who learns that her mother – who left when she was three days old – is really an Irish shapeshifter, called a pukka. Rowan sets out on a journey to find her mother and learn about who she is. There are wild horses, eagles, and good friends, set in the high lands of Montana and Wyoming. Like all my books, it has magic.

Buy: BookPassage ~ Amazon.com Barnes & Noble ~  IndieBound

Buy: BookPassage ~ Amazon.com Barnes & Noble ~  IndieBound


For Susan Adrian’s other books, click here

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