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Sarah Mlynowski's Disreputable History

Magic in Manhattan

By now you know Sarah Mlynowski and I wrote a book together with Lauren Myracle -- How to Be Bad
(Here we are. That's Lauren with the pink hair, Sarah with the awesome hair, and me showing my gums.)
How to Be Bad
But did you know her new book Parties and Potions is out? The fourth in the Magic in Manhattan series. You can become a fan on facebook

Anyway, I've read it, and it's my favorite in the series. Rachel goes to a WITCH DEBUTANTE BALL and learns there are boy witches. Hot boy witches. How will she stay true to Raf, when she can't even tell him the truth about her magic powers? 
Fun city. 

I got Sarah to tell me her Disreputable History, below. 
Even though I've been on tour with her and already know all her secrets!  
(sorry for weird spacing. This more high-tech version of typepad refuses to import text without doing crazy format stuff)

1.         Tell me the sneakiest thing you ever did.   

I backpacked in Europe with my boyfriend…but told my parents I was backpacking with my friend Shobie. I got caught too. Shobie was also in Europe that summer and left a message for me at home about meeting up in Florence. The next time I called my parents, my dad asked me who I was traveling with…unfortunately my answer was Shobie. 

2. Tell me the sneakiest thing that happens in your new book.  

Rachel, the main character, is always up to something. In Bras & Broomsticks she tries various techniques to sabotage her father’s wedding—like giving her future step-mom an ugly spell. In Frogs & French Kisses Rachel casts a love spell on her crush, except it lands on her crush’s boyfriend instead. In Spells & Sleeping Bags she tries to organize her camp cubby with magic, but ends up zapping her clothes away. In the new book, Parties & Potions, Rachel whispers to her boyfriend that she can’t talk because she’s at the dentist, when she is actually in the middle of a debutante-witch lesson in Arizona.

3.         Are you a prankster? Tell me a story.

In college, we stole a friend’s clothes and towels out of the dorm shower and she had to unhinge the disgusting shower curtain and wear it back to her room. Oh, wait…that was done TO me, not BY me. I still need to get Kevin back for that.

4.         Were you in any clubs or societies in high school? Did any of those club activities make it into your novels? 

I wasn’t. Some of my friends were in the fashion show in high school, and while not a club, it definitely felt like one. A very exclusive one. You had to be gorgeous, popular and be able to move your butt like you’ were a contestant on Dancing with the Stars. And the models took the show very, very seriously.  Zoolander seriously. I had to use that somewhere, and it’s in Bras & Broomsticks. Rachel gets her little sister to give her a rhythm spell so she can make it into the fashion show and hang with the A-list. Harlem shakes, the Macarena and chaos ensue…

5.         Do you consider yourself a feminist? Why, or why not?

Yes.  First, because women and men deserve equal opportunities. Second, because I think it’s important that women’s realities are valued in the same way men’s are. They may be different, but that doesn’t make a woman’s experiences any less valuable. For example, growing up I loved my Cabbage Patch Kids, Angelica and Bianca. I also loved my Star Wars figures. Should I not have loved my Cabbage Patch Kids because they were so… girly? Absolutely not. I celebrated them. They took rides on the Millennium Falcon.

6.             How does your answer to question 5 show up in your new book?

In Parties & Potions, Rachel learns to accept and be honest about who she is (a witch) and to feel empowered by her differences rather than inhibited. Also, the cover is hot pink. And I love it.

7.         The club in Disreputable History is called The Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds. If you were to found a secret society, what would it be called, and what would its mission be? 

Secret Society of Super Powers. It would be a lot like Spiderman and His Amazing Friends. I would be Firestar, aka Angelica Jones (yup, the namesake of one of my Cabbage Patch Kids).  We would use our powers for good—stopping evil, saving children, roasting marshmallows.