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Inspired by her grandparents' bakery and her recent visit to Paris, nine-year-old Grace leads her friends in starting La Petite Patisserie, making and selling French pastries at school and special events, but they soon discover that starting a new business is not always easy--or fun.



About the Author

Mary Casanova

Mary Casanova is an award-winning children's author of novels and picture books. Many of her books stem from her life on the Minnesota-Canadian border; yet some of her stories have taken her as far away as France, Norway, and Belize for research. Whatever the setting for her books, Casanova writes stories that matter--and stories that kids can't put down. Her book awards include: American Library Association "Notable," Aesop Accolades by the American Folklore Society, Parents' Choice "Gold" Award, Booklist Editor Choice, and two Minnesota Book Awards. Her books frequently land on state children's choice book master lists across the country. "The greatest reward for me," Casanova states, "is when a young reader tells me she or he loves one of my books. For me, it's all about communicating writer-to-reader through a character and story. "Casanova grew up in a family of ten children in St. Paul, Minnesota. In a bustling camp-like atmosphere, Casanova found that writing became her voice. "Words are my paintbrush," she explains, "my way of exploring the world around me. "Now, with 19 books published and many more under contract and forthcoming, she divides her time between writing and traveling. Nationally and internationally, at schools and conferences, Casanova shares her love of writing and reading with children and adults. Her newest novel, The Klipfish Code, makes use of Mary's on-site research in Norway. The story explores an important facet of Norwegian history through the experiences of Marit, a 12-year-old Norwegian girl who finds a way to fight against the 5-year Nazi occupation of Norway. Marit and her brother Lars are separated from their parents (who are working for the Resistance) and sent to live on an island with their gruff grandfather and school teacher aunt. During the course of the story, Marit's aunt is one of the Norwegian school teachers that gets sent to a concentration camp for refusing to integrate Nazi propaganda into her classroom. With potential danger waiting every turn, Marit finds a way to help the Resistance and eventually reunite her family.Mary's series, Dog Watch (Simon and Schuster) is based on her northern Minnesota village where dogs are allowed to roam free - as long as they don't get in trouble. If they get in trouble, they earn a sticker on their page at the village clerk's office; too many stickers and a trouble-making dog must remain at home. "I never know where the next story will come from. It's a delight when the stories come right from this corner of the world I call home." She makes her home in a 100-year old house on Rainy Lake with her husband, Charles, and their three "above average" dogs and spends free time with their horses, Jay and Midnight.



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