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There's A Book

The 20 Question Interview with our very own Turkeybird is our feature interview that happens with all of the book authors, illustrators and poets we love!

Today we have the pleasure of inviting the author of a new middle grade book just out today, John David Anderson author of Sidekicked. It’s a book we’ve been reading chapter after chapter each night and both Turkeybird & I are certain it’s going to be a huge hit! So without further hesitation on our part, Turkeybird’s interview with author John David Anderson

John David Anderson1. Who is your favoritest super hero ever? (Mine is Batman, but I really like Superman too.)

I like Batman too. When I become a haunted billionaire with a global empire and a secret cave and a black belt in everything I hope to be half as cool as him. Though my favorite superhero is actually The Tick. You should check him out sometime. He’s hilarious.

2. Your favorite super villain is my favorite too! Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz is on my favorite show ever. Would Perry maybe be your favorite superhero/secret spy?

Perry is awesome. But he’s still just a platypus, so he’s kind of hard for me to emulate. I admire his ingenuity and pluck, but until I grow a beaver-like tail, I’m probably better off trying to be more like Batman.

3. When you were my age did you like to read?

I think I liked to get in trouble; at least that’s what my parents say. But yes, I also loved to read. My mother used to read Madeleine L’Engle and C.S. Lewis to me in bed. I liked reading anything that had adventure or suspense. Still do. The thrill of reading hasn’t changed in thirty years—I still love to be transported to other worlds, living vicariously through lives infinitely more exciting than my own—it’s just the books have gotten longer.

Stand Back Said the Elephant I'm Going to Sneeze!4. What was your favorite book?
Never ask a writer what his or her favorite book is—it drives them crazy. There’s just way too many to choose from. Can you tell me your favoritest book? You have three seconds…GO! See? Not so easy, is it? Favorite books are like favorite jeans. You wear them as long as you possibly can, but eventually you grow out of them and get new favorites. I will say my favorite picture book is probably “Stand Back!” Said the Elephant, “I’m Going to Sneeze!” Maybe Littlebug would like that one.

5. Crayons or Markers?

Crayons. Markers are brighter but limited in range. Ever open a new box of 96 crayons with the pencil sharpener in the back and look over all those colors, just imagining the possibilities? And that new crayon smell? They should make a candle out of that. I still remember reading the names of new crayons and wondering what the heck a fuchsia was.

6. Why?

Usually because somebody says so. But every once in a while because you really want to, even though you know you will probably get into trouble anyway… Oh. Did you mean why crayons? I thought maybe we were getting philosophical.

7. What’s your favorite color?

Not fuchsia. Probably midnight blue. That color that is so blue it’s almost black, making you think it has something sinister in mind.

8. Superhero or sidekick? (I like the sidekicks in your book because they have special powers too.)

The great thing about being a sidekick is that there is (hopefully) always someone there to back you up. You never have to do it alone (though Andrew Bean might disagree).

Sidekicked9. What would you pick for your super power? (I’d definitely pick being super super fast because I like to run super fast!)

If you already run super fast you should pick something different. Like the ability to control the minds of adults and make them do your bidding. “Mom…forget the eggs. We’re having pizza and raw cookie dough for breakfast from now on…”
Today my super power would be to stop time. Because I’m three loads of laundry behind. (Wait: If I stop time does that mean the washing machine stops working? Because that kind of defeats the purpose.)

10. You know kung-fu! How super cool! Have you fought any ninjas today?

I actually don’t know kung-fu. I know just enough Tae-Kwon-Do to look menacing to squirrels. Which is good. Because squirrels are dangerous.

11. Your website says chocolate a lot. Do you like chocolate as much as I do?

I don’t know. Do you love chocolate more than your own mother? Because I love chocolate as much as my mother, so you would have to love chocolate more than your own mother to like chocolate as much as I do. (Kidding, ma!)

12. What’s your favorite kind of chocolate? (Mine is chocolate ice cream on top of chocolate brownies with chocolate chips and chocolate fudgy syrup on top, but my mom doesn’t let me have it very much.)

Your mother is very wise. I prefer dark chocolate stuffed with gooey caramel and topped with sea salt. But I could also dig into a big old chocolate chip cookie dunked in still-warm chocolate sauce and heaped with a landslide of whipped cream, then topped with about seven Snickers bars.

13. Why do you like to write?

Because it makes the voices go away…

Standard Hero Behavior14. Is this your first ever book? (I’ve been writing books this year, but you can’t buy them in a store…yet.)

Actually no. My first published book was Standard Hero Behavior, which is a sarcastic fantasy adventure road trip romp. Before that I wrote lots of books that, like yours, can’t be found in stores…yet (laughs menacingly).

15. Swings or Slides?

Swings. Because I’m lazy. Slides are fun, but then you have to climb back up to go back down them again. On a swing you get a trip both directions. Besides, I like the feeling I get when my stomach tumbles.

16. Why?

Wait…is this a philosophical question again?

17. I read that you have twin kids. Did they always like to read the same kind of books when they were my age?

They aren’t much older than you. My daughter is an omnivorous sort of reader: she will consume anything in print. Yesterday she read two picture books, a book about lizards, a hundred page chapter book and a big chunk of The Hobbit. My son’s much more selective. He likes books where people fight. If there’s no throw down between good and evil somewhere in it, he’s probably not interested.

There is a Bird on Your Head!18. What did you like to read to them?

Everything. I like making up voices for the characters. My favorite to read were Elephant and Piggie books. I also like tongue-twistery-types. Fox in Socks is a personal fave. Want to have a talk about tweetle beetles?

19. Did you know that every time I read Andrew’s name in the story I read it as Andrew Bacon instead of Andrew Macon Bean? How did you come up with that silly name that always makes me think of bacon?

Could be worse, sometimes I read it and think “Andrew’s Making Beans…what?” And we all know what happens when you eat lots of beans. Something Andrew, with his extraordinary senses, is keenly aware of. I don’t know. I guess I just wanted to make sure his name wasn’t too cool. Like Calen Vortex Darkslider or something like that.

20. What are you writing right now?

Right now I am writing “Right now I am writing”. But after this I will probably go work on one of six other new novels I’ve started. Or do the laundry.

TurkeybirdThe Turkeybird Speaks: Seven snickers bars?! Wow! That sounds super good just by itself, but with all that extra stuff and cookies too. Super super good!

So you don’t know kung-fu? Just some? Squirrels are silly though, there’s a place by where we live that has so many you can’t get away from them! Kung-fu would probably help a lot.

Mr. Anderson this was the most funny interview ever! When my mom and I were reading it I couldn’t stop laughing. I think maybe one day we should write funny books together that you can really buy in a big store. That would be so fun I think. Thank you so super much for all these great answers! I hope everyone gets to read your book and likes it as much as I do!

SidekickedSidekicked by John David Anderson

With not nearly enough power comes way too much responsibility.

Andrew Bean might be a part of H.E.R.O., a secret organization for the training of superhero sidekicks, but that doesn’t mean that life is all leaping tall buildings in single bounds. First, there’s Drew’s power: Possessed of super senses – his hearing, sight, taste, touch, and smell are the most powerful on the planet – he’s literally the most sensitive kid in school. There’s his superhero mentor, a former legend who now spends more time straddling barstools than he does fighting crime. And then there’s his best friend, Jenna – their friendship would be complicated enough if she weren’t able to throw a Volkswagen the length of a city block. Add in trying to keep his sidekick life a secret from everyone, including his parents, and the truth is clear: Middle school is a drag even with superpowers.

But this was all before a supervillain long thought dead returned to Justicia, superheroes began disappearing at an alarming rate, and Drew’s two identities threatened to crash head-on into each other. Drew has always found it pretty easy to separate right from wrong, good from evil. It’s what a superhero does. But what happens when that line starts to break down?

Sidekicked - Blog Tour Banner


I have to give a huge thank you to the publisher, Walden Pond Press, for giving Turkeybird the opportunity to interview John as well as host a giveaway for one copy of Sidekicked!
Be sure to enter using the rafflecopter form below and be aware that this one is for US residents only.

Find Sidekicked by John David Anderson at the following spots:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Powell’s Books | Indiebound | Book Depository | Goodreads | ISBN/ISBN-13: 0062133144 / 9780062133144

Thank you to Walden Pond Press for coordinating this feature! Find Walden Pond Press on Twitter and Facebook!
Purchasing products by clicking through the links in this post will provide us a modest commission through our various affiliate relationships.

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13 Responses to Author Interview and Giveaway: 20 Questions with John David Anderson

  1. anne says:

    My favorite superhero is superman.

  2. Steph says:

    My favorite is probably Iron Man. I can’t believe he mentioned The Tick! I have all those comic books and action figures. He is great.

  3. Wonder Woman, of course! I used to wear my awesome WW underroos and pretend to fly around the house!

    Great job, Turkeybird! I loved your questions! =)

  4. Ms. Yingling says:

    Great questions! My philosophy last year was “Be your own superhero!”, but my principal thought this meant I REALLY had superpowers and gave me a study hall with 75 6th graders in it. I think that ElectroWoman is my favorite super hero, but mainly because of the theme song!

  5. Karen H says:

    Wonder Woman! I used to watch the show and wear my underroos.

  6. Bluerose says:

    Batman! He’s always been my favorite, particularly because he didn’t actually have any superpowers. He created his own. 🙂

  7. Victoria Zumbrum says:

    I love superman.

  8. Annabel says:

    Batman, without a doubt. Such inner turmoil.

  9. Kristie says:

    I like Captain America 🙂

  10. Dena says:

    I have a soft spot in my heart reserved only for Megamind. 🙂

  11. Wendy says:

    Catwoman! I’m usually a “dog person” but yeah.

  12. Batman used to be my favorite superhero, but he’s just a creative hero since he has no real super powers. I now claim Spider-Man as my favorite!

  13. My favorite superheroes right now are ladies – Batgirl is the top of my list and Captain Marvel runs a close second.

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