Monday, June 17, 2013

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: Chase Tinker and the House of Magic + Interview & Giveaway

I'm so excited to be back in the MMGM and even more excited about the interview I got to do with the author Malia Ann Haberman. And she offered to give away the first 2 ebooks in the series. Woohoo! Her first book in the series is my pick today.

Chase Tinker and the House of Magic by Malia Ann Haberman
published in Aug 2012

Other Books in the Series:
2. Chase Tinker and the House of Secrets (2013)
3. Chase Tinker and the House of Destiny (2014)
4. Chase Tinker and the House of Mist

The Hook: After his dad goes missing, 13-yr-old Chase Tinker learns he has magical powers and a magical family. They must protect their house Relic from evil forces or their magic will be lost forever.

Why I liked it: Imagination and an easy page turner. The book is an easy recommend for anyone wanting more magic after reading Harry Potter. Chase and his brother go to live with their grandfather for the summer to learn about their magical abilities, but what they learn quickly is that the house itself is very magical and protects their family's house relic, the source of their magical power.

The house is a very fun and imaginative part of the story. Every room has its own abilities that the children can use like squirting root beer out your nose, teleporting to the beach, or being tormented by premonitions while they sleep.

This is a great adventure and great for reluctant readers. Definitely a boy book but girls will like it too.

My Interview with Malia Ann Haverman & Ebook Giveaway

The plot is very exciting, an easy and intriguing page turner. And I love Chase and Andy. I always like finding out which came to you first: the characters or the plot?
The magic house came to me first. I had a dream one night I was living in a gigantic house and every room was filled with magic. When I told my daughter about it, she thought it sounded like a great premise for a kids' lit book. So together we started throwing out ideas about characters, where the Tinkers' magic would come from, the bad guys, a missing parent and other stuff. We also had a great time thinking up all the different powers for the magical rooms.

My daughter is the one who picked the names Chase and Andy. When she first told me I said, "But I want to use the last name Tinker and when you say Chase Tinker fast, it comes out sounding like Chase Stinker." And she said, "So? Just figure out how to use that in the book." And so I did. Ha!

Which character did you enjoy writing the most and why?
Maxwell the ferret was a great character to write, but I think, of the humans, Chase Tinker would be my favorite. As the main character, I love making things happen to him. Good, bad, embarrassing, goofy, crazy; I just had a lot of fun with it.

What's your favorite scene in the story?                            
I have a few favorites, but one I really enjoyed writing is in the first chapter when Chase is in his room having problems with his power and then trying to figure out how to control it. I had fun thinking up crazy things that would happen if a person really was learning to control the telekinesis ability. I wanted it to be entertaining, yet have a serious tone as well, because he was also upset about his missing dad.  

This book is the first in a series, how many books will there be and when can we expect their publication?
There are four books in my Chase Tinker series. Book one "Chase Tinker and the House of Magic" is now out in ebook, audiobook, hardcover and trade paperback.

The 2nd book "Chase Tinker and the House of Secrets" was just released as an ebook. The other formats will be out in the fall.

Book 3 is called "Chase Tinker and the House of Destiny" and that will be out the beginning of 2014. It's actually already written.

The 4th and last book is called "Chase Tinker and the House of Mist." I'm currently in the middle of writing that one.

Why do you write for middle graders?
I've actually been interested in writing for middle graders and tweens for quite a while now. So when I came up with the idea for my Chase Tinker series, I was really excited. I think kids are wonderful to write books for because they're open and engaging, and they happen to love fun, adventure and silliness as much as I do. :) They also have such amazing energy and enthusiasm and, of course, imaginations. I have such a good time coming up with ideas for my books that I hope they'll really get a kick out of.

As a writer, do you plot out your whole story before you start or do you write by the seat of your pants?
When I first started "Chase Tinker and the House of Magic," I had ideas, but no clear outline to follow. I would just let things come to me as I wrote, and it worked out really well. But then, my then-agent, wanted me to outline the rest of the series. I thought, What?! Write everything down? Now that's just crazy talk! But I put on my thinking cap and got to work, and it's a good thing I did or I would've forgotten and missed out on loads of great ideas. So now, I guess you can say I'm a bit of both. :)

You have a great upper middle grade voice. What advice can you give to aspiring writers about how to find a middle grade voice?
Thank you! That's so nice of you to say, Brooke. I've worked really hard to get just the right voice that sounds like my own, and yet sounds like something middle graders would really enjoy reading. I guess the best advice I can give is to read lots of books in the age group and genre you're interested in writing, and then take what you like the best and put your own spin on it. I would also advise aspiring writers to just keep writing and writing until you feel you have a great voice to your books that people will want to read.

Do you have a favorite place to write or snack to eat when you write? 
I like to write sitting on my floor in my living room with my coffee table as my desk, my computer in front of me and my TV going as background noise. As for snacks, I'm not a big snacker, I just count the hours between meals so I can dig up something tasty in the kitchen. Most of all, I really look forward to dessert. :)                                                                

Want More? Author of  "The Chase Tinker Series" Malia loves dancing, reading, writing, sunsets, ladybugs, playing video games on her iPod, watching TV, and chocolate. She also has terrible motion sickness and hates onions. She's always wanted to have the ability to teleport and the power to move things with her mind. She lives in the Seattle area with her four wild and crazy ferrets.


Amazon: buy it  

To enter to win the first 2 ebooks in the Chase Tinker series, leave a comment below. 
The winner will be chosen at random on Thursday night. I'll announce the winner on Friday. If you don't have a blogger profile, leave a contact email. cheers!


  1. Man, I wish I could teleport to the beach.

    Welcome back to MMGM, Brooke! It's been a while...
    Great interview. I'm amazed Malia sits on the floor to write. I'd be too stiff to get up! :)

  2. The series sounds wonderful. :) I would so love to win this contest. My email is:


  3. Brooke, Thanks for the great interview. I'm doing the second revision of a middle grade novel, "An Ode to Cleve," so it's great to hear first hand from the experts.

  4. The books sound really great. My boys, like me, love to read, (ages 7, 15 and 16) and I think they will like these. I will definitely be looking them up. Thanks for the interview and contest! 8)

    Michelle Hofacker

  5. Wish I could get these. Sounds very interesting.

  6. Sounds like a great book series. Look forward to reading them.

  7. I love the cover. This sounds like a fun series, but I'm not an ebook reader, so please let someone else win. I'll check out the books in other formats.

  8. These sound so fun. I would love to win, my son is so hard to keep in books and he would Love these. Between print books and e-books I spend more time getting him books than I do for me. Finally something we could both enjoy.

  9. I missed this giveaway- but this book sounds so fun! I love the cover and the story sounds great. I love HP and this book sounds so magical. :)