Author Interview and Book Review: Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets
I’m super eager to share my thoughts on Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets and am excited to host an interview with the author, Stacy C. Bauer.
I especially love that by reviewing books of new and aspiring authors is that I get the opportunity to find out who they are, and to watch them succeed. I also love that I get to be one of the first to share their stories with you.
Both the story of them as an author, and the story they have written.
I don’t know about you, but Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets sounds like a story my youngest kiddos could learn something from.
That said, I’ve found since I started meal planning if I don’t add desserts to the plan, we don’t have any treats in the house because they don’t make it onto the shopping list.
That certainly makes it easier to not have too many sweets!
Book review: Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets
First things first, the legal stuff. I was provided a copy of the story in order to write this review. Seems reasonable to me. Now let’s get on with that book review!
Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets features a lovable, energetic, and mischievous young kangaroo named Cami. Cami Kangaroo loves sweet treats.
After sneaking treats at every opportunity, despite the locks on fridge, freezer, pantry, and drawers, Cami Kangaroo ends up with some cavities.
She ends up promising the dentist not to sneak more treats.
If your children love treats, this story will be especially relevant for them. They’ll identify with cute little Cami who has a mind of her own, and will (hopefully!) try to be like her, in deciding not to sneak any more treats.
Even more children will be able to relate to her difficulty listening to her parents. Mommy and Daddy Kangaroo tell Cami Kangaroo not to sneak treats, but instead to ask first. But Cami Kangaroo still has trouble following their direction.
This is a great story that illustrates why it’s important to listen to parents, to keep our teeth clean, and to ask first before having a sweet.
Author Interview: Stacy C. Bauer
For those of us that don’t know who you are, can you introduce yourself?
I am a wife, mother, teacher and author.
I’ve been married for 15 years. I have 2 children, Cami who’s 9 and Wyatt who’s 6.
I’ve taught everything from kindergarten-8th grade and am currently teaching second.
Two years ago, on a leave from my teaching career, I decided to write a book. I’ve written stories since I was a child and have always wanted to be a published author.
What sparked the idea for Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets?
My two children are always doing funny things, which I share with family and friends on social media. They would tell me I should write a book.
I made a list of all of the silly things my kids have done and the lessons I could tie into them.
One of the first “funny” things my daughter Cami started doing was sneaking treats when she was just 3 years old.
At Halloween, how does your family deal with the usual excessive amounts of sweets kids end up collecting?
We actually let them have a piece or 2 for a few days, then I end up donating it! My school does treats for troops.
What is your favourite sweet treat?
Peanut butter cups and dark chocolate.
Did you always want to be a children’s book author?
Yes! Since I was a child.
I’ve wanted to be a wife, mother, teacher and author and I am so fortunate to be living my dream!
I imagine it’s hard for any author to trust an illustrator with Their book. Since this is your first picture book, just how scared were you to put it in the hands of another artist?
I didn’t think twice about it.
My illustrator is so talented and flexible – I trust her completely. If I don’t think something looks right, she fixes it. But mostly she does things just the way I envision them.
I’ve heard a picture book author has an instinct for what needs to be said and what should be left to the illustrator to show, was that true for you?
At first, I struggled with this.
I was used to writing at the high school/college level, where you have to show everything through words, so that’s the way I wrote the first draft.
When I shared it with beta readers, the first thing they said was “your illustrator can show that!”, so I learned to take a lot of that out.
What were the challenges you encountered In The Process of completing Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets?
Ummm…pretty much everything!
Figuring out what to do after I wrote the rough draft for starters! I knew absolutely nothing about publishing a book.
Luckily, my sister knew someone who had just published a book and started her own publishing company. I had breakfast with her, she took me on as a client and helped me get started.
That was my initial challenge, but there are new ones every day: I had to learn how to build a website, an author facebook page, find an illustrator, run a Kickstarter, and the biggest challenge yet: marketing!
On your journey to becoming an author, what has been the best and worst advice you have received?
Best advice: No one else is going to sell your book- believe in yourself and your book!
More great advice: Be patient!
Worst? I can’t think of any bad advice I’ve gotten actually.
Who are your favourite children’s authors?
Mo Willems and really anyone who writes funny books with great illustrations.
What is the best question you have ever been asked?
Kids ask me a lot of great questions when I’m doing school visits. They always want to know about my kids. “Does Cami still sneak treats?”
If you weren’t answering the questions in this interview right now, what would you be doing?
Doing school work, researching marketing strategies for my book or cuddling with my family. We play Monopoly every night, but my kids are in bed right now.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us about yourself, your writing, or Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets?
I am proud to say that Cami has not had a cavity since she was 3 (at that first appointment), although yes, she does still sneak treats!
Wyatt will be starring in some books really soon and my illustrator and I will be doing at least 3 more books.
Stacy has a variety of fun extras that go with Cami Kangaroo Has Too Many Sweets on her website, including a fun kangaroo pouch craft, dental health worksheet, and lesson plans.
Whether you buy her book or not, the printables are a great way to have fun with your child.
If this delightful story sounds like something your kids would enjoy, you can find it on Amazon.
How do you handle treats at your house? Have you encountered any of the same issues as Cami Kangaroo, with your children sneaking treats? Tell me about it in the comments below.