About Maria

Hi! I’m Maria. I write fiction and nonfiction for kids.

I also edit children’s books for the Wisconsin Historical Society Press.

I live in Madison, Wisconsin with my husband, kid, and dog.

If you want to know what some of my favorite books and authors are, visit my author page on the Lerner website.

Since my book, MYSTERIOUS GLOWING MAMMALS, is all about animals, here are my answers to some animal-related questions.

What is your favorite animal?

Easy. My dog, Rocky. He earned the name because as a puppy, his fur looked like swirls of Rocky Road ice cream. He is a very good boy.

Okay, but I didn’t mean what’s your favorite individual animal. I meant, like, what’s your favorite animal species?

Oh, I see. That would have to be Tyto alba, or the barn owl. I love birds, especially raptors. Barn owls are something special, even in the incredible raptor family. They have all the cool owl traits, like silent flight and facial discs that collect sound waves. Plus, they’re gorgeous.

So do you wish you had a barn owl as a pet?

No, I do not.

Why not? Is it because of the pellets? Or the fact that you’d have to feed it dead rats?

Actually, I enjoy owl pellets. It’s fun to break them apart and see if you can put together a whole skeleton of whatever the owl last ate. Also, I’ve fed dead rats to birds of prey before and enjoyed that, too. Mostly I don’t want a barn owl as a pet because there’s no room in my house for a bird that size. And I don’t have a barn. (Get it? For a barn owl?)

Ummm…okay, that’s enough about birds. Your book is about mammals. So what’s your favorite mammal species?

Oh, boy. You’ve stumped me this time. I suppose I have to go with flying squirrels. You know they don’t really fly, right? Not like birds. They glide. They also have really big, cute eyes. And their fur glows pink under ultraviolet light.

Whoa! Wait. Flying squirrel fur glows pink? Who figured that out?

Funny you should ask. You can read all about it in my book, MYSTERIOUS GLOWING MAMMALS!

Oh, I see what you did there. Very sneaky.

Thank you. Thank you very much.