Like many, I have fond memories of the physical and emotional excursions that took place during my childhood, adventures which required the same kind of risk-taking as the heroine in THE ADVENTURES OF PURPLE HEAD, BUDDHA MONKEY AND STICKY FEET (Savant 2016), namely Purple Head – an alien from another planet. 

   One time, I trekked deep in the woods with my best friend to a large children's slide hidden there. When we arrived, there were several goats roaming around the slide, blocking the stairs up the slide. As 5-year-olds, we were hesitant to approach these "wild animals," but finally gained the courage to do so.  Soon enough, moving past our fears, we were sliding amongst the hovering goats that didn’t seem to mind a bit – much to our relief. It was an emotional experience repeated often in childhood and later adulthood: encountering an unknown and moving past the fear to find the fun. The character of Purple Head was written as a way to reconnect with those feelings.

   Sticky Feet, the toothbrush in the story, represents the brainy nature lover embodied in my son, Forest, who consistently follows his interests in the natural world about him and it innumerable details.  He, like Sticky Feet, buried his head in field guides, once helping us identify a five-foot snake roaming the dried grasses on my dad's vacation property in New Mexico. Forest discovered through the use of his New Mexico field guide that the snake was non-poisonous, but closely resembled one which is quite deadly.  Phew!

   Buddha Monkey originally received his name because when we sat him upright, we typically crossed his legs. The stable lotus position made him look meditative and calm, and his "wise" voice thus developed. He represents the unflappable, transcendent one who overcomes obstacles, finding ways to weather the storms of life, but always having fun along the way, as monkeys are prone to do.

   The adventures of the gang are a window into childhood and how children frame their experiences with nature, risk-taking and courage.  THE ADVENTURES OF PURPLE HEAD, BUDDHA MONKEY AND STICKY FEET was written to further engage children in a world they most certainly already know, and adults in a world they may have temporarily forgotten, until they pick up the book!