John Claude Bemis was guest host of #LitChat at 4 p.m. ET on April 18, 2016. Read the chatscript of John’s #LitChat session 2016-04-18 John Claude Bemis.
The first novel in a new series for middle grade readers called Out of Abaton, The Wooden Prince by award-winning children’s author John Claude Bemis, re-imagines the world of Pinocchio for a new generation of readers.
The automa Pinocchio has always been duty-bound to serve in the floating palace of Venice’s emperor. So when Pinocchio finds himself locked in a trunk and delivered to a new master-a wanted criminal and alchemist named Geppetto-he is curious about everything around him. But most curious is the way Pinocchio seems to be changing from a wooden servant into a living, human boy. Before Geppetto and Pinocchio can uncover the mystery surrounding the automa’s transformation, Pinocchio is stolen away. Determined to find Geppetto again, Pinocchio begins a harrowing journey across the Empire, where danger in the form of half-beast outlaws and winged airmen abounds for a lost automa.
Meanwhile, Princess Lazuli, the daughter of the ruler of a magical kingdom called Abaton, is also on a quest through the emperor’s territory. Her father, Prester John, has been captured by the Venetian Empire, and Lazuli is desperate to rescue him. With the emperor’s airmen closing in fast, Lazuli learns the only hope for saving her father — and her beloved home — lies in Pinocchio and Geppetto.
An inspiring speaker and entertaining performer, John Claude Bemis is the author of Out of Abaton: The Wooden Prince, the Clockwork Dark trilogy, The Prince Who Fell from the Sky, andFlora and the Runaway Rooster. He received the Excellence in Teaching Award from UNC Chapel Hill’s School of Education for his work in the schools as an author-educator and served as North Carolina’s Piedmont Laureate in 2013. John lives with his wife and daughter in Hillsborough, NC.
Follow John Claude Bemis on Twitter: @JohnClaudeBemis.