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Jan 21 / Michael

Remembrance of things Trapped (A la recherche du temps freezing)

Trapped will turn 1 year old on Feb. 1, and it is snowing here in Brooklyn, as if nature were throwing a surprise party for my wintry little book. If that were the case, here are some of the presents it would be unwrapping:

It has been nominated for a CBC Teen Choice Book Award. (Were one of a mind to, one could vote for it here. Now. I kid! Or do I?!)

It has also been nominated for the Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers list (a fantastic resource put out annually by YALSA, the YA division of the American Library Association).
UPDATE: It made it! Hooray! Trapped is on the list, along with books by my close personal friends (they just don’t know it yet) Tim Tebow and 50 Cent, and a flock of amazing authors. Seriously, check it out. It’s a fantastic list.
DOUBLE UPDATE: Trapped also made YALSA’s Readers’ Choice List! I’m gobsmacked! The cows have officially come home, my friends: My book has made a list based on popularity. (I really have no rational framework for this: Not only was I never homecoming king, I didn’t even go to prom.)

StorySnoops recently named it to their “Best of 2011” list, where it is in good company, indeed.

It just got a great shout-out from Grafton, WI, where you better believe they know their snow, in “What Are They Reading for Fun?” in School Library Journal.

Yesterday it was named the top “Freezing Your Face Off” book by Teens at the Arlington Public Library!

And right before blowing out the candle at its party, my book would pause, a far-off look on its frozen face and maybe even a hint of a tear in its eye, remembering an incredible year:

Before the math got away from me (I’m more of a word person), I was attempting to calculate how many books had been sold this year—in tons! Let’s just say that the math would have been much easier (and lighter) after year one of my first book . . . .

The face that launched a thousand shipments

Trapped was reviewed in USA Today, on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and dozens of other super-cool places. Not to mention 122 customer reviews on Amazon, 132 on Barnes &, and a whopping 1,507 ratings and 575 reviews on Goodreads. And though some of those made my book’s eyes water for less sentimental reasons, the response really mattered: Trapped started out as a little book, with a modest advance and expectations, and just snowballed (so to speak) based on reviews, word-of-mouth, and some truly bad weather.

It was an Indie Next List selection (hooray for indies!) and one of Barnes & Noble’s “Must-Reads for Teens” (hooray for you too, big guy), and made the Tayshas high school reading list in Texas, where the range is open and the librarians awesome.

Operation Snow Globe rolled on, with foreign rights sold in the UK, Australia, Germany, Italy, and Russia.

And finally, there are the scores of amazing comments, emails, and even a few actual letters from readers—and on that note, I’ll stop trying to quantify (and link!) this experience, because the quality of it has been absolutely overwhelming. Many young readers wrote to say that Trapped was their favorite book, or their first book report, or the first book they bought with their own money (no refunds!). If I look out the window and think that nature is throwing my book a party, it is only because it feels like the world has been astoundingly generous to me this year. Every one of those purchases, messages, and reviews feels like a gift (well, maybe not every review…), and it’s all still going, like a snowstorm that just won’t stop.


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  1. Michael / Jan 21 2012

    The snow has now turned to freezing rain here in Ditmas Park, which seems a lot less like a surprise party.

  2. Micol / Jan 22 2012

    Huzzah for TRAPPED’s birthday! Boo for freezing rain!

  3. Michael / Jan 22 2012

    Thanks, Micol! Yes, this weather gives a whole new meaning to the term slush pile. Or I guess that’s actually the original meaning. Either way, I don’t mind being trapped inside today: so much football!

  4. Michael / Jan 22 2012

    And of course, as utter karmic payback for a boastful post (a bost?), I just got 1-star reviews on Amazon and B&N. The triumphs and travails continue to keep each other company!

  5. Maria Wen Adcock / Jan 28 2012

    Congratulations, Michael…well deserved and all of your hard work is paying off!

  6. Michael / Jan 28 2012

    Thanks, Maria! Hard work, good luck, bad weather… This book has made a huge difference for me, so whatever it is, I’ll take it!

  7. ryan field / Jan 29 2012

    I have been so frustrated this winter because we haven’t had any snow yet at all. I live in New Hope, Bucks County, PA, and this time last year we were, indeed, trapped.

    Happy B’day for Trapped. (It’s also my birthday, too.)

  8. Michael / Jan 29 2012

    Hey, Ryan: Happy Birthday! (Facebook really fell asleep on the job telling me about that one.) I’m definitely missing the snow, too. It’s been cold enough, and we’ve had plenty of precipitation here in NYC, just not at the same frickin’ time. Rainy winters… ugh.

  9. ryan field / Jan 30 2012

    LOL…I hid my birthday on FB. One year on FB I found all these birthday greetings from people I didn’t know. There were tons. And I received an e-mail notification for each one. My inbox went wild. I freaked out a little and hid the birthdate after that.

  10. Michael / Jan 30 2012

    Haha! I definitely understand that. I just hid the year on mine, so I don’t have 500 people making jokes about how old I’m getting every year!

  11. Ms. Wallace's class Dakota & Dixon / Feb 29 2012

    That was a great book. My favorite part was when the snow kart started moving.

  12. Michael / Mar 2 2012

    Thanks, you two! That’s one of my favorite parts too.

  13. Eli / Jul 25 2017

    Make a sequel

  14. Michael / Jul 30 2017

    Thanks for writing, Eli. Your vote has been counted!

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