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YA Eco Mysteries, Memoirs, Novels & Travel

Covid-19 and Antarctica

Antarctic Connections, Conundrums and Covid-19

A sizzling summer afternoon sheltering on our patio in Alabama, the connection between the us and the Covid-19 pandemic are painfully obvious. But the connection between the US and what goes on in the Antarctic is hard to grasp—it’s a conundrum.
By sheer luck this year, 2020, we visited Antarctic on the cruise ship,
Zaandam. It turned out to be the most phenomenal and memorable cruise. A cruise of a lifetime. We barely made it back home before Covid-19 hit the US. Which got us thinking about ships and tourists, Covid-19 and pandemics, climate change and melting ice, and the connections and conundrums between all of this. Read More...

Science and Nature Writing

Environmental Literature Illuminates Our Connection to Nature

The storm winds of climate change are calling. They’re calling to scientists, and writers, and artists to weave stories that will inspire the children of tomorrow to dream up a brighter future. Happily, they are responding to that call with a spate of new nature and environmental stories that use science as a springboard to create powerful children’s literature.
 Red Flag cover 1:26   copy

Climate Change Fiction for Kids

Climate Change Fiction: Multicultural, Diverse, Indigenous, Global, and with Animals, Too!

Fiction can be a powerful way for students to understand how climate change has and will affect their future. Fiction (cli-fi) can serve as a springboard for lively discussions. In addition, stories offer ways in which students can envision and adjust to climate change through new technology and social adaptations. The ideas discussed below can be used to encourage class reading, enrich a unit on this topic and, hopefully, inspire students to do research, or create their own stories, poems, drawings of the future altered by climate change.

Interview: Climate Change for Teens

Interview: Climate Change Fiction for Teens

Claire Datnow with Students

I’m delighted to present Claire Datnow as this month’ Indie Corner author. Claire was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, which ignited her love for the natural world and diverse cultures. Claire taught creative writing to gifted and talented students in the Birmingham, Alabama, public schools. She earned an MA in Education for Gifted and Talented and a second MA in Public History.


Global Travel Environmental Books

Teiglach made from crunchy dough: A Memoir Behind the Walled Garden of Apartheid

In my memoir,
Behind the Walled Garden of Apartheid I describe memories triggered by my mother’s cooking, including her wonderful aromatic chicken soup, gefilte fish, a savory fish mouse, and the sweet teiglach made from crunchy dough boiled in honey and ginger, to name just a few.
In The Case of the Missing Piping Plovers set in the Bahamas, I describe the delectable traditional fresh Conch salad, Johnnycakes, and Guava Duff—a Bahamian dessert akin to a jelly roll.

Bahamian Guava Duff, The Adventures of the Sizzling Six: The Case of the Missing Pipping Plovers

In Vanishing Birds, slated for publication in fall of 2021, I expand my narrative to the entire length of the Atlantic migratory flyway from Baffin Bay in the Arctic to Tierra Del Fuego, a remote island on the southernmost point of Chile. I can still taste the Chilean sea bass and empanadas we dined on in a restaurant overlooking the bay in Valparaiso, Chile.
Monarch Mysteries, follows the migration routes of the threatened Monarch butterflies from North America to the Oyamel forest at El Rosario sanctuary in Mexico. In this tale I describe the Day of the Dead Bread, or Pan de Muerto, a big round soft bread decorated with strips of dough to resemble bones, and also spicy tamales.
Recently, I completed Red Flag Warning: An Eco Adventure, sparked (pun intended) by the devastating wildfires now exploding around the globe. The story is told through the eyes of three diverse teenagers: Aisyah from Sumatra, Kirri from Western from Australia, and Hector from Northern California, brought together by a powerful gift—the ability to communicate with animals. In this Eco adventure the reader is treated to a Rijsttafel feast including Lucky New Year Salad, which I actually enjoyed in Singapore during the Chinese New Year.

Rijsttafel Indonesia Environmental Fiction
Rijsttafel Indonesia, Red Flag Warning: An Eco Adventure

I would be remiss in not mentioning that I have favorite Southern recipes, too. I hope those recipes I serve at family dinners and special occasions will entwine themselves in my children’s and grandchildren’s memories—to be shared with the next generation.
Other favorite gustatory moments, which haven’t yet made it into my stories, include the manicotti filled with ricotta cheese we tasted at a small restaurant atop Mt. Etna, on the island of Sicily. And then there’s Israeli chopped salad we ate at Latrun in Israel . . . I could go on and on.

To celebrate good times and good memories
I would love you to share your favorite memories of food. Just send them to And if you are interested in ordering a copy of any of my books you can find them on Amazon. For more Information Please visit related blogs at:
Mysteries of the Monarch Butterflies Migration Blog

How Migratory Species Connect the Planet

Multicultural, Diverse, and Global Environmental Literature

The Winds of Climate Change calling Authors of Children's Literature

The Winds of Change Blog blog SCWBI Spring Bulletin

Interview with Author Claire Datnow Dragon Fly Eco Lit.

Eco Fiction for Tweens,Teens,Adults

Eco Fiction for Tweens, Teens, Adults and Librarians, Too

Front Cover Red Flag  copy

Why do I write Eco fiction? What do I want readers to say when they refer to my books? I would be thrilled if they said that they love the way I weave the wonders of nature together with a strong conservation message. In particular, I focus my Eco Fiction on young people in the hope that my stories will inspire them to become wise conservationist, who will make a difference to our threatened ecosystems. Here are links to Eco fiction readers, writers, and books:

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