Wishers' author coming to sign books

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 26, 2011

By Daphne Safrit
For the Salisbury Post
SALISBURY — Robin is like most other girls growing up in Concord — she has her strengths and weaknesses and is pretty aware of what those are. But some days it seems like all of the weaknesses far outweigh the strengths. Unfortunately for Robin, one of those days just happens to be her 11th birthday.
Robin is not deterred when a first-thing-in-the-morning head bonk with her sister leads to a gruesome black eye; the day is going to be fabulous, even if she doesn’t look her best. Then she rushes off to Charlotte for a big swim meet, where she loses, not just a little, but big time. Which wouldn’t be too bad, except that it happens in front of a boy who Robin thought was her boyfriend. That is, until he showed up at the meet with another girl.
Still, this is Robin’s day; there will be a party and presents and cake, and … nothing. Nothing! Because, of course, Robin’s birthday is the perfect day for her little sister to infest the entire family with head lice. Is it any wonder then that Robin, dirty, bruised, and broken, wishes with every thread of her being to be anyone, anyone else in the world but herself.
Suddenly, Robin is jolted awake (wait, when did she go to sleep?), in a room quite different from her own, by the booming voice of a British man. Robin is somewhat surprised when her response comes out in a strange British accent, but even more so when her reflection shows a beautiful girl and not the “Plain Jane” she’s used to seeing. Robin is no longer Robin, she is the British child star Fiona Walker.
And so begins the adventure that is “Bye for Now,” the new novel for young readers by North Carolina resident Kathleen Churchyard where 11-year-old “Wishers” from all over the world are in a mix-up.
Robin may be in Fiona’s body, but the real Fiona is in Japan; and the girl in Robin’s body in North Carolina is actually from India. Robin only has a couple of weeks to try to get everyone sorted out so that the girls can try to get home. In the meantime, she has to use all of her strengths to maintain Fiona’s perfect life. Luckily, past and current “Wishers” are there to help, as well as email and the Internet (thank you Google and Facebook).
Kathleen Churchyard, who has lived all over the world, currently calls Concord her home. She lives there with her husband and two daughters (one of whom inspired “Bye for Now”). Churchyard will be coming to Literary Bookpost on Saturday, Sept. 3. She will read from her debut novel, “Bye for Now”, beginning at 2 p.m. followed by a book signing making for an afternoon out for elementary aged girls, as well as their parents and grandparents.
Literary Bookpost is located at 110 S. Main St. in downtown Salisbury. For additional information on this event, call 704 630-9788 or visit www.literarybookpost.com.