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The Adventures of Sid Sawyer

Return to St. Petersburg–America’s hometown. The Adventures of Sid Sawyer is a companion book to Mark Twain’s Adventures of Tom Sawyer and is written for children and adults. If you remember being delighted by Tom and his friends, and if you like your nostalgia with a twist, then this is your book.

Tom Sawyer’s half-brother, Sid, is a goody-goody and a tattletale—at least according to Tom. In The Adventures of Sid Sawyer, we meet another Sid, a bright and courageous young boy determined to find his father, who has disappeared years earlier. As Sid searches for his father, he survives a kidnapping, a tornado, and an encounter with the Sac Indians.

In Sid Sawyer, major events from Tom Sawyer—Tom whitewashing the fence, Tom attending his own funeral, Tom and Becky lost in the cave—are now seen through Sid’s observant eyes. Sid provides a new perspective on characters we know from Tom Sawyer. The cheerful rascal Tom is revealed to be a reckless bully, Cousin Mary is a secret minx, and Aunt Polly enjoys napping after a spoonful of “Ladies Tonic”

But the most surprising and intriguing character in this new book is the young narrator, Sid Sawyer—a big-hearted boy genius. The Adventures of Sid Sawyer gets its comic energy by comparison with the classic, but it stands on its own as the story of a young boy engaged in a quest for his father—and his own identity.


I’m honored to have been tagged in “The Next Big Thing – French Twist” blog hop by Stephanie Zia, author of The Continuity Girl. The Continuity Girl will be published by Blackbird Digital Books. Visit Stephanie Zia. Stephanie was tagged by travel author Susie Kelly. Visit Susie Kelly

What is the working title of your next book?
(That’s the official question, but in my case the title is firm.) The Adventures of Sid Sawyer. The book has just been published in print: Visit Amazon.

Where did the idea come from for the book?
I’ve always loved The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, and I wanted to return to that world, revisit its characters and landscape. Sid Sawyer, a tattletale and sissy in Twain’s book and a genius in mine, offered me a way back in.

What genre does your book fall under?
It’s for adults nostalgic for St. Petersburg, MO, as well as for teenagers who want a good adventure story.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Hmmm. Main actors would be 2 young boys, 10 and 13 and a girl of 11. Don’t know child actors.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
Sid Sawyer, bullied by his older brother, Tom, is on a quest to gain his brother’s respect and to find his father, who has disappeared mysteriously years earlier.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Armadillo Central of London is the publisher. Visit ArmadilloCentral.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
It’s hard to say because at the same time I was writing another novel, Best of Friends, about women feuding at the work place. The two books are so different it was a pleasure and relief to go from one to the other. I probably finished both books in three years.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Sid belongs to a class of books (not exactly a genre) which repurpose other books, using the original plots or characters and providing a new twist. Jean Rhys wrote The Wide Sargasso Sea as a prequel to Jane Eyre; John Updike wrote Gertrude and Claudius based on Hamlet; and there are other examples in this mashed-up world of ours.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I just kept picturing Tom Sawyer’s adventures seen from different eyes, those of his studious younger brother.

What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?
Sid has a big heart and a kind nature – and is also surprisingly sensual for a preadolescent. There’s also a hilarious account of him smoking weed, which he thinks is tobacco. And Aunt Polly is a little too fond of her “ladies’ medicine.” So some contemporary issues find their way into the 1830s.

I'd like to tag two other writers to join the blog hop and share their writing talents: Sonia Pilcer, whose linked stories form The Last Hotel -- Visit Sonia Pilcer -- and Kathleen Lawrence, whose memoir is Becoming Irish: Visit KathleenLawrence .