March 24


Where there’s a Will… by Jenni Holm

I have always drawn on family history as inspiration for my novels. In the case of Full of Beans, the story was actually inspired by someone in my immediate family: my son, Will.


Will was only seven when Turtle in Paradise was published and wasn’t quite ready to ready to tackle chapter books. A few years later, when he finally did read it, he peppered me with questions. How did the Diaper Gang get started? Was Johnny Cakes really a rumrunner? What about the secret diaper rash formula? Most of all, he wanted to know more about Turtle’s sharp-tongued cousin, Beans.


“Beans needs his own story,” he insisted.


I started thinking and researching. I wasn’t used to taking creative marching orders from my own kids. But maybe Will was right. Maybe Beans did need his own story.


So I set out to give him a voice. Full of Beans is his story.


Full of Beans Turtle in Paradise New


Will is twelve now. He is full of opinions—just like Beans. And, yes, I suspect he will be advising me what to write next any minute now.


Jenni Holm is a 3-time Newbery Honor winning author. She and her brother Matt are the Eisner Award winning team behind Babymouse and Squish and Sunny Side Up