The Ravens of Solemano
written by Eden Unger Bowditch
published by Bancroft Press
About the book – from Goodreads: It has been mere days since the brilliant children of the Young Inventors Guild escaped from the clutches of the horrible Komar Romak.
They’ve escaped with their lovely and caring schoolteacher, Miss Brett; with their long-absent parents; and with their bizarre captors, protectors, or both–the mysterious men in black. And now they travel by train, destined for parts unknown.
But a note torn from the hand of a dead man in a New York tunnel guarantees that safety is an illusion. When the children’s world is blown apart, life will never be the same again.
Soon, the children–Jasper and little Lucy Modest, from London, England; Wallace Banneker, from New York, United States; Noah Canto-Sagas, from Toronto, Canada; and Faye Vigyanveta, from Delhi, India–find themselves in the ancient Italian village of Solemano, deep in a mystery that spans centuries. As they inch toward the truth of the men in black and the secrets they keep, one terrible fact remains:
Komar Romak is still out there. He’s still after them, for reasons they can’t even begin to imagine.
And he knows exactly where they are . . .
From the rolling plains of America to the wide-open waters of the Atlantic, through the Strait of Gibraltar to a remarkable village in the hills of Abruzzo, Italy, The Ravens of Solemano or The Order of the Mysterious Men in Black, the second book of Eden Unger Bowditch’s Young Inventors Guild trilogy, is an adventure like no other, as the children draw ever closer to the answers to the mysteries that surround them.
Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book. If you like mystery, history, and strange magic that is real, I think this is the story for you.
Where did you get your inspiration for The Ravens of Solemano? I was in Italy and I found a strange newspaper 1903 article from the New York Times archives that was like a door opening into the entire story. I knew The Atomic Weight of Secrets (book 1) and book 3, but was struggling with the path through book 2. That was the moment and the place. it all fell together.
You have lived and attended school in many different places. How has that experience influenced your writing? Definitely. The kids in the book are from all over. They, too, know about being displaced and, too, about the wonders of travel.
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects? Book 3 is in progress right now. I am really excited since it brings everything that I’ve had to keep hidden into the light.
You have also had many different jobs—from welder to journalist to musician and more. What has been your favorite job? What was your least favorite job? Well, as a welder I did art and that was great. I loved turning steel into liquid! Talk about science! I loved being a musician and touring and making records, but the hours and hours in the van—with a baby in tow—was grueling at times. But, to be honest, I’ve loved almost every job I’ve had. It is so important to love what job you do since most of your life you’re doing it!
What is your favorite genre to read? I LOVE to read YA lit since it is such a challenge to write, I know it is some of the best stuff out there. I am a sucker for good mysteries and crime stories, too, especially historic mysteries.
Who is your favorite author? Ugh!!! So many!! I love Kurt Vonnegut, Jasper Fforde, Michael Jecks, Rick Riordan, Christopher Fowler, J K Rowling, and so many more!!!
In your opinion, what is one book that everyone should read? For writers and serious readers, I’d say Wolfgang Iser’s book, The Act of Reading. For lovers of YA lit, Rick Riordan’s Lightning Thief series. For people looking to read something utterly different than anything they’ve ever read, and who have already read Vonnegut, Jasper Fforde’s The Eyre Affair.
Tell us three things about yourself that cannot be found on the internet…at least not found easily. I have climbed Mt. Sinai in the Egyptian desert; I used to tag along with my husband when he was a serious skater and kick around on a skateboard, very badly; and I have a dog who can pee standing on her front two legs.
About the author: Eden Unger Bowditch created the Young Inventors Guild series, inspired by her son’s disappointment in the impossibility of the magic found in young adult novels. She wanted to tell a story about science—the kind of magic that’s all around, and the kind people can actually do. Growing up in Chicago, Eden later lived both in Los Angeles, Paris, Baltimore, and in Egypt with her husband and three children. She is the author of several nonfiction books about her longtime hometown, Baltimore, and has been a journalist, a welder, an editor, and musician.