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Thursday, May 3, 2018

Catalina and the King's Wall Blog Tour, Giveaway, and Author Interview

BeachBoundBooks is pleased to be coordinating a Blog Tour for the children's picture book written by Patty Costello and illustrated by Diane Cojocaru, Catalina and the King's Wall. The tour will run from May 3 - May 31, 2018.

About the Book

Title: Catalina and the King's Wall
Author: Patricia Costello
Illustrated by: Diane Cojocaru
Genre: Children's Picture Book
Number of Pages: 32 
Publisher: Eifrig Publishing
Publication Date: May 5, 2018
Summary: One day Catalina overhears the king planning to build a wall and fears her family will never be able to visit. Catalina tricks the king into building walls that droop, drip, swirl, and swoosh away. But now the king demands a wall that will outlast even a Twinkie. Luckily, Catalina has the perfect ingredients to bake up a family reunion!

Available on Amazon & Eifrig Publishing

Take a peek inside the book...

About the Author

Patty Costello lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, a crazy awesome toddler, a dog named Pippa, and a dog named Spencer. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of St Thomas and a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Minnesota. She currently works in higher education. Catalina and the King’s Wall is her first book. At all hours of the day (and night) she can be found standing at her desk, helping her university run smoothly and working on her next story.

Website ~ Facebook 

Author Interview
Learn more about the author in the interview below. Then be sure to enter the giveaway for $25 from Amazon/PayPal.

Tell us about yourself.
I live in Boise, Idaho with my husband, a toddler, a dog named Pippa, and a dog named Spencer. I have a BA in Psychology from the University of St Thomas and a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Minnesota. I was born and raised in the Twin Cities, Minnesota and still consider myself to be a Minnesotan (you betcha!) I currently work in higher education and have had my research on attention and implicit processing published in journals such as Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Consciousness and Cognition, and Psychological Science. My background in neuroscience and psychology helped me to write my first picture book. It is designed to be a teaching tool for progressive parents to discuss current events with their young children.
I am an active member of Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and my local Idaho-Utah chapter of SCBWI. I am currently in my first 12 x 12, a supportive community for picture book writers, encouraging us to write a new picture book a month. I recently was offered representation by a New York Agency and my book is currently out “on submission.”

What inspired your book, Catalina and the King’s Wall?
I was inspired to write this book after I took my son to my local women’s march in January 2017 following the combative U.S. presidential election. I stood with him on that cold and snowy day and wondered: What kind of world was he born into? How will he learn to always be kind? I was deeply concerned, yet hopeful because of the turnout at the march. I wrote my book to help parents discuss these questions with their kids in a fun story format that children can relate to. I would love for all kids to hear the story of a persistent cookie baker named Catalina and how she never gave up on seeing her family again.
I am excited that the book has successfully garnered a lot of attention and pre-orders before the launch date of May 5th. I ran a successful Kickstarter campaign to raise PR funds and also funds for local refugee organizations.

Tell us about your main character.
I really loved how Catalina turned out. Catalina is a talented young baker, away from home, happily baking for the king. However, she learns that the king wants to build a wall to keep anyone who is “different” out. She realizes that her family, due to visit her soon, won’t be able to visit after all if a wall is built. She is too busy baking to take time off to go visit them. Catalina is determined to come up with a plan to stop the king from building his wall. She is persistent, never giving up on her dream of seeing her family. She speaks in baking puns and is always very positive. When she is trying to come up with her next idea, she says to herself “Oh, for goodness bakes!” and when the king demands more and more of her cookies, even when yelling that he does not like them, she thinks to herself “he really frosts my cookies!”

What do you think readers will find most appealing about your book? 
I think parents will appreciate the underlying message and will find the subtle political spoofs – both in the text and the illustrations - amusing. I think kids will like it because it talks about cookies, cake and frosting! They will like Catalina’s silly way of talking in baking puns and how persistent she is in standing up for what she believes in. She is the true underdog to root for and kids will be rooting for her the entire story.

Tell us about your illustrations (if applicable). 
I really lucked out with my illustrator Diana! I found her through an online forum of international artists. I immediately fell in love with her whimsical watercolor. Diana had done children’s books before, but my project was her first project for a book that would not be self-published. Even though she lives in Romania, half a world away, we developed a wonderful rapport and communicated often. We discovered that we both had toddler boys – our first-born children; we dedicated the book to our sons and she told me that I was the first author that had asked her whom she wanted the book dedicated to.

I was the art director – I had to give her a general idea of what I was looking for on each page and she created the rest. Her vision is what you see - amazingly rich and detailed paintings created with care, flair and pure imagination. I did not give her any of the political backdrop information as I thought that might detract from her creative endeavors. I also figured that Romanians probably just aren’t that interested in US politics anyway! We continue to stay in touch and I would love the opportunity to work with her again. You can see more of her work here: and here. I can’t tell you how many people ooh and ahh when they open my book and see these remarkable paintings. I smile and say the only thing I can take credit for is finding and hiring her! Small presses, with their smaller staff and resources, tend to rely on the authors to find their own illustrators (unless you are an author-illustrator and don’t have to worry about that at all!)

Blog Tour Giveaway

Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize, winner's choice
Giveaway ends: May 31, 11:59 pm, 2018
Open to: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Patty Costello and is hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Java John Z's did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.
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  1. Thank you so much for hosting me! Patty

  2. Thank you for hosting the tour and for interviewing Patty Costello about her new children's book.