When a homeless woman gives Maxzyne a painting of a French poodle just like the one in a storefront display, it turns out to be more than just a coincidence for the impulsive 10-year-old. Maxzyne finds herself at the center of a rescue mission when a wayward freight elevator, a family of enchanted vintage mannequins in distress, and a secret tunnel propel her straight into the mysterious depths of a Chicago department store. Can she convince the ghastly Gigi not to use the mannequins' heads in her art exhibit before store closing? It's a race against the clock for Maxzyne and her new mannequin sidekick Elise.Despite her overactive imagination and tendency to get distracted, she learns some important lessons about loyalty, bravery, generosity, and accepting responsibility for her actions. A wonderfully spirited and fun adventure story, Maxzyne Meets the Mannequins is a delightful read for children of all ages.
Fed up with polygraphs, security clearances and a daily commute, Caroline Lee fled a career writing classified reports for the Dept. of Defense to become a full-time storyteller and daydreamer-in-chief. Often inspired by her surroundings, Caroline's first book, "Maxzyne Meets the Mannequins," features America's most impulsive heroine, 10-year-old Maxzyne Merriweather, whose madcap adventures take place in the magical and historic city of Chicago.
Caroline currently resides in Delray Beach, Florida where the weather is much warmer than Chicago. She is a member of the Society of Childrens Bookwriters & Illustrators (SCBWI) and is thrilled that her first book "Maxzyne Meets the Mannequins" won the 2020 Independent Press Award for Children's Fiction. The second adventure in the series, "Maxzyne and the Old Horse Theatre" is now also available on Amazon and recently won two Story Monsters Dragonfly awards! Learn more at www.maxzyne.com
It's that time of year again. The Christmas decorations are up, the annual TV specials make their rotation, and the familiar carols are playing so often it's become the soundtrack of my life. Gifts have been wrapped, parcels mailed and I'm mulling over what to write in the Christmas newsletter (about the year we just stayed home!) for the cards I send each year. So why do I keep fantasizing about doing the unthinkable? Yep, something totally out of character at this point of my waist-watching, pound- pinching life. That would be spending a whole day baking Christmas cookies. Poring over an ancient recipe book of family favorites, the index cards yellowed and mottled over the years with my grandmother's elegant handwriting obscured by the occasional splash of buttery batter from cookie batches past. Memories tantalize until I almost taste them; spritz, peanut blossoms, Russian teacakes, chocolate fudge, oh the delight! But wait. Maybe, just maybe, a sister will send some . . .
Maxzyne Meets the Mannequins
Jumping down the last three steps, Maxzyne slides to a stop on the colored tiles of the Lollipop and Soda Shop. It’s a sugary wonderland: rows and shelves of candy jars, an old fashioned soda fountain, and tempting displays of boxed chocolates and other sweet treats. “C’mon, Elise. You’re going to love this place.” Skipping up to the polished wooden counter, she trails her fingers along oversized glass jars of candies lined up like soldiers on parade. Pausing, she considers a container of butter cream mints. The pale green and white nougats make her mouth water. Lifting the lid, she grins as the scent of peppermint, vanilla, and sugar rises in the air. She snatches a candy from inside the jar and drops it in her mouth, letting it float on her tongue. The sugar rush makes her giddy, and she quickly moves on.