Children's Author
Young Adult Novelist

Michelle D. Kwasney

My Books

Coming in October 2009

Chronicle Books

Blue Plate Special is a YA novel narrated in alternating chapters
by three very different young women: shy, overweight Madeline (late 1970s),
angsty, foul-mouthed Desiree (early 1990s), and smart but self-doubting Ariel (present day).
As their stories unravel their lives intersect, weaving a tale of loss, love, and forgiveness.

(Henry Holt, 2008)

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommeded Reading List

IRA Children's Book Award Notable Book

Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year




Delores Colchester, nicknamed Itch, hasn’t been on her Thinking Swing since the day her beloved Gramps died. There’s a darn good reason for that. Thinking will only make Itch miss Gramps more. Plus it’ll make her miss the house they shared back in Beaver Creek, and her best friend Bailey—both of which she lost when stubborn Gram got the notion of pulling up roots and moving north to Ohio. Starting over is hard. And so is making new friends. When Itch befriends an almost-famous baton twirler named Gwendolyn, she’s tickled—until she discovers the dark secret Gwendolyn is hiding. “Speaking up takes courage,” Gramps had always told Itch. And she’s about to discover how much.

April 2008 / 256 pages
  ISBN 0-8050-8083-X
16.95 US / 21.00 CAN  
Ages 10 & up

                                 "The dramatic ending is emotionally satisfying, the story is layered with insight . . .
and the author's pleasure in language is contagious, but this novel's greatest strength is its indelible characters . . . Itch herself is a quirky and endearing heroine . . .
(her) coming-of-age is  a rich and satisfying journey." 
               ~ School Library Journal
                           A "moving, believable story. Sympathetic, well-drawn characters . . ."

                                 "Kwasney's characters are . . . fully fleshed and memorable." ~ Kirkus 
                                  "The story is so well written that 12-year-old girls won't be able to stop 
                              turning the pages."
~ Childrens Literature

Now available as an audiobook from
Recorded Books  

Click on the links below to listen to the first three chapters:

Chapter One: Unjust
Chapter Two: Melancholy
Chapter Three: Bob Dylan Was Right

Read an excerpt.

Watch the Itch book trailer.

Download/print an Itch Study Guide.


Baby Blue

(Henry Holt, 2004)

New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age
Booksense Pick

208 pages
ISBN 0-8050-7050-8
16.95 US / 23.95 CAN
 Ages 12 & up

Blue’s family is coming apart at the seams. After Pa drowned in the river, Mama up and married Jinx, who Blue and Star know is big trouble. And now Star has run away, leaving Blue behind. It was hard enough to watch Mama get knocked around when Jinx was in one of his “moods,” but now, with Star gone, Jinx has spun out of control. It’s up to Blue to find Star and get help for Mama, to piece her family back together again. But Blue is running out of time. With biting realism and poignancy, this compelling young-adult novel explores Blue’s struggle to protect her family and stand up against what she knows is wrong.

Henry Holt Books for Young Readers

Read a Baby Blue excerpt.

Read Baby Blue reviews.

Buy Baby Blue on or
or locate an
independent bookseller near you.


 Want to win a FREE copy of Baby Blue?

Each month a new name will be drawn and a copy of Baby Blue,
autographed by the author, will be mailed to one lucky winner. 
Drawings will be held the first of every month. Entering is simple.
Click here to address an email to the author
then type FREE BOOK GIVE-AWAY in the subject bar.

If your name is drawn the author will reply via e-mail
 to find out where you'd like your FREE BOOK mailed.
One entry / month / person, please!