Not everything turns out to be as it first appears when Cody and her best friend, Spencer, navigate a neighborhood mystery and the start of a new school year. Cody’s best friend, Spencer, and his parents are moving in with his grandmother right around the corner, and Cody can’t wait. For one thing, Cody needs Spencer to help solve the mystery of the never-seen Mr. Meen, who lives on the other side of the porch with a skull-and-crossbones sign in the window and an extermination truck out front. How’s Cody to know that a yellow jacket would sting her, making her scream “Ow! Ow!” just as they start spying? Or that the ominous window sign would change overnight to “Welcome home,” only deepening the mystery? In this second adventure, Spencer’s new-school jitters, an unexpected bonding with a teacher over Mozart, and turf-claiming kids next door with a reason for acting out are all part of Cody’s experiences as summer shifts into a new year at school.
I’ve loved stories all my life—stories in books, stories my grandmother told me, secret stories I made up just for myself. I became a reader early on, but it took a while to figure out I was a writer, too. I had lots of jobs, all of them working with children, before I figured out that what I REALLY wanted to do was put my two great loves—kids and stories—together. I feel incredibly lucky and privileged to be a writer for young readers, the most passionate and loyal readers on the planet. My books range from picture books (Phoebe and Digger) through chapter books (the four Cody books) through middle grade novels (What Happened on Fox Street, Mo Wren Lost and Found, Moonpenny Island, Every Single Second). They’ve won awards and starred reviews, but best of all is that they’re no longer just my stories—they belong to you now, too. I live in Cleveland with my retired teacher husband. We have three grown daughters and two grandbabies. In my spare time, I garden, walk, read (of course) and look for more stories to tell.