Hastings-on-Hudson book fair


I’m very excited to participate in Hastings-on-Hudson’s first Multicultural Book Fair, especially because my latest novel, FINDING MIGHTY, is set in Dobbs Ferry! If you’re thinking of coming, here are some questions you might have.

What is a Multicultural Book Fair?  A multicultural book fair is an opportunity to find books that feature characters from  other cultures and ethnicities.  These characters may live in another country or in your own neighborhood—they might even represent cultures and backgrounds that you come from, or those of your best friend.

What is FINDING MIGHTY about?   The book is a mystery novel about two sixth-graders, Myla and Peter, who become neighbors when Peter moves to Dobbs Ferry. Peter’s brother, Randall, is a graffiti writer who paints a strange tag in a local train station before disappearing one night. Peter thinks Randall is searching for clues to explain their father’s mysterious death. He wants Randall back. Myla is someone who is great at observing the world around her—she likes to look at graffiti and wonder what the stories are behind them.  When Peter moves next door to Myla, the two team up together to find Randall, and in the process, solve a decade-old crime involving missing diamonds, parkour runners and graffiti crews.

Sheela Chari

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How did you get the idea for the book?  It started with a graffiti tag my daughters and I would see every time we went on the highway. Can you guess which highway? Can you guess what it says?

I started to wonder who wrote the tag, how that person got it up on the sign, and why. As I did, the story of Peter’s brother emerged in my mind, and Peter’s determination to find his
missing brother.

Myla is the other half of the story. She is similar to me—I like graffiti, too, and as a child I always felt overshadowed by other people in my life. When I wrote FINDING MIGHTY, I thought, wouldn’t it be great if Peter and Myla met and became friends? Maybe they each have something valuable to share with the other. In life, some of the best friendships work that way. Myla and Peter also learn to appreciate their siblings and  understand the importance of family.