When I was 5, I had my little address book where I'd written down all the people I needed to call in case of emergency. A couple of years later, I had to cook and shop for groceries on my own. At 10, I was obsessed with translating into Italian all the Latin sentences in The Name of the Rose, and I enjoyed doing my best friend's trigonometry homework. If I try to recall memories of me as a teen, I don't think I ever acted like one. I've never been able to be my own age back then, but I sure did love kids and teen literature. Even now that I'm a grownup --sort of--, I still have a soft spot for this kind of stories, so when John Peragine asked me to read Max and the Spice Thieves, I was more than happy to accept.