Sunday, June 16, 2013

Giveaway and Interview: Code Busters Club by Penny Warner

Code Busters Club 1: The Secret of the Skeleton Key by Penny Warner

Cody’s odd neighbor,
“Skeleton Man,” has
always been a little
strange. But when the
Code Busters notice
something mysterious
going on at his house,
they think he’s sending
them a message about
a hidden treasure. . .

The Haunted Lighthouse: Code Busters Club 2 by Penny Warner
When Cody and her friends get a mysterious e-mail hinting at a treasure on Alcatraz Island, they can’t wait to get started on their clue hunt. Luckily, a class trip to the prison is the perfect cover to start their search.
During the tour, the club members learn that a jewel thief may have hidden his biggest haul on the island and left a series of coded messages to find it. And solving puzzles is what the Code Busters do best!
interview with Blkosiner's Book Blog
--The Twitter version: tell us about your book in 140 characters or less.
The Code Busters Club is a mystery featuring two girls and two boys, who solve a puzzle by cracking codes. When they see a mysterious message scrawled on a dirty window across the street, they realize old “Skeleton Man” has written the word “HELP” in Semaphore (flag) code.

--How did you get the idea for the story?
I’d been writing children’s activity books and adult  mysteries for a few years and thought it would be fun to combine the two and write an interactive mystery for kids, sort of like the children’s version of The Da Vinci Code.
--Which character would you most/least like to have dinner with?
I’d love to spend time with Cody (Dakota) Jones, because she’s smart, fun, daring, and creative.
I would not like to spend time with the two villains in the first book because they’re not smart, fun, daring, or creative!
--Do you have any other works in progress? Any teasers or release dates?
Book #1: The Secret of the Skeleton Key and Book #2: The Haunted Lighthouse are out now. Book #3: The Mystery of the Hidden Treasure will be out in the fall, followed by Book #4: The Mummy’s Curse.
--What book(s) is your book’s “cousin”? (Similar kind of read, set-up or style)
Perhaps Chasing Vermeer or the Mysterious Benedict Society.
--What are some of your favorite books? Do you still have much time to read?
I grew up reading Nancy Drew mysteries so they’re my favorite children’s books. I also loved The Swiss Family Robinson, Freddy the Detective, James Bond, Agatha Christie, Sherlock Holmes. I currently read all kinds of mysteries, mostly those that also have a sense of humor. I like to learn something when I read. And I love biographies, women’s literature, and middle-grade mysteries.

--If a fairy godmother told you could be put into the world of your favorite book for 24 hours, which book would you pick and why?
Nancy Drew, of course. I’d love to follow her on a mysterious adventure. (By the way, after rereading the first 56 books in the series recently, I wrote a book called THE OFFICIAL NANCY DREW HANDBOOK: Tips and Tricks I Learned from Reading Nancy Drew, which was nominated for an Agatha Award for Best Non-Fiction in the Mystery Genre.

--Do you need anything to write (music, coffee, etc)? Are there any songs on your playlist- songs that inspired you or that were playing while you wrote?
No, I need quiet so I can hear the Code Buster kids and see the action. Although I do have the theme song from “Murder, She Wrote” on my iPod.

--If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
To be invisible and spy on interesting people.

--Besides writing, what do you like to do in your free time?
I teach Child Development at the local college and love it, even after 33 years.
--What is one thing you would tell your 15 year old self?
It gets better, but enjoy this time anyway – it can be magical.

--Is there anything else you want to add or say to your readers?
Thanks to all my readers who have joined the Code Busters Club and written me emails, letters, and cards (sometimes in code!)

Lightning round: this or that?
Vanilla or chocolate? Chocolate. It’s a necessity.
Edward or Jacob? Edward – he’s sensitive.
Hockey or soccer? Neither – don’t care for sports.
Ebook or paper? – Both – don’t want to choose. They each have their advantages.
Salty or sweet? Sweet (see Chocolate above.)
Beach or mountains? Both, depending on  my mood. The beach to relax, the mountains to hike.
Phone call or email? Email – then I can take my time and answer coherently.
Early bird or night owl? Early bird – I’m asleep by ten!
Dog or cat? Three cats (does that make me a Cat Lady?)
Messy or neat?Neatish, with a side of messy (I know where things are!)
Ninjas or pirates? Pirates! I featured one in my next Code Busters Book: Mystery of the Hidden Treasure!

This or that from character POV
Cody Jones is 13, loves to create and crack codes, is fluent in sign language (her little sister is deaf), her parents are divorced, her mom is a police officer and her dad is an attorney.
Vanilla or chocolate?  Chocolate.
Edward or Jacob?Neither, she’s not ready for a boyfriend, although she does have a crush on Code Buster Luke LaVeau.
Hockey or soccer? She’s not into sports.
Ebook or paper?Ebook – she loves her computer and cell phone.
Salty or sweet? Sweet.
Beach or mountains? Mountains – she recently moved from the Sierras to Berkeley and misses it.
Phone call or email? Email – more fun.
Early bird or night owl? Early bird.
Dog or cat? She has adopted a local cat named Punkin but can’t keep it because her sister is allergic.
Messy or neat?Neat and organized.
Ninjas or pirates? Pirates!

Blkosiner's Book Blog Giveaway
- phyiscal copy of book 1 and 2, open US only
-Fill out Rafflecopter to enter
-Ends on 7/14/2013 11:59 pm EST
-If you win a review on your blog and/or amazon is appreciated but not required.

*If, for whatever reason, the Rafflecopter widget does not appear, you can click on the link where it says rafflecopter giveaway and it will show up, sorry for the inconvenience.

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  1. Love the idea of the book! sounds like so much fun!

  2. Yes! I explained the premise of this book to my son and he agreed that it sounds like a really neat book. I love the 'fairy godmother' question and the answer to that one. Congrats on the award :D Also, man she is working on a lot of stuff! Excellent interview :D Thank you so much for sharing! Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven.

  3. They sound really fun, what a great idea! Great interview.

  4. I haven't heard of this book which is not strange as I don't read MG books. Still it sounds really interesting. Great interview :)

  5. These books sound like so much fun, I think my younger sister would definitely enjoy something like this. Thanks for putting it on my radar Brandi :)

  6. Hi Brandi! Thanks for the chance to blog on your beautiful site! I hope everyone wins a book. If anyone wants a code-busting packet full of decoder cards, email me at and I'll send it along!
    Best, Penny Warner


I would love to hear from you! (I always try to visit your blog back) I love links, so feel free to link to your blog or a post you like.
Sorry, but I am award and tag free zone, I do not have the time to return. Comments are reward enough :)