Maxwell Beer has trained as a theater and film performer for the past several years. This summer, he played the lead role in the film adaptation of Wendy Mass’ novel, Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life, which will be released later this year. In addition, Maxwell toured nationally as Arty in Michael Bloom’s production of Lost in Yonkers, with performances at the Maltz Jupiter Theater in Florida, The Cleveland Playhouse, and a final run at Paper Mill Playhouse. He is currently a freshman at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School in New York City.
Wendy Mass is the author of 10 novels for young people including A Mango-Shaped Space (which was awarded the Schneider Family Book Award by the American Library Association) and Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life which has recently been made into a movie. Her other novels are Leap Day, the Twice Upon a Time fairy tale series, Every Soul a Star, 11 Birthdays, Heaven Looks a Lot Like the Mall, Finally and most recently The Candymakers. Her books have been translated into 13 languages and have been nominated for 42 state book awards. She wrote the storyline for an episode of the television show Monk, entitled “Mr. Monk Goes to the Theatre,” which aired during the show’s second season. She tells people that her hobbies are hiking and photography, but really they’re collecting candy bar wrappers and searching for buried treasure with her metal detector. Her favorite candies are Peppermint Patties, Smarties, and anything in dayglow colors that shouldn’t be eaten by anyone over ten. Or under ten.
Rebecca Stead was awarded the Newbery Medal in 2010 by the American Library Association for her second novel When You Reach Me. This thought-provoking mystery is set in New York City in 1978. In fact many of the scenes in the book take place right in the neighborhood. Rebecca is also the author of First Light, an engaging mix of science fiction, suspense and adventure. She lives on the Upper West Side with her husband and two sons.