Mary Margaret is a spunky ten-year-old girl with a tough mission. Her mother has asked her to accompany her recently widowed grandmother on a cruise to the Greek Islands. Mary Margaret wonders if she'll really be able to help her grandma get the rest, relaxation, and recuperation she needs, or if she'll just be in the way on this seniors-only cruise. But in time Mary Margaret makes new friends, helps her grandmother say goodbye to Grandpa, and finally has a chance to fulfill her being-a-mermaid dream. Along the way she learns a little about the ancient world, a little more about herself, and a lot about delighting some grown-ups who need a little redheaded mermaid in their lives. A smart and sensitive story told through the journal entries of a very precocious girl.

Hardcover middle grade novel, Ages 7-12

"Mary Margaret is an absolutely delightful fourth-grader . . . . Hazen has written a charming account of a girl's voyage that includes not only the latitude and longitude but the discovery of some of the meaning of life, love, and family. A winner." Kirkus Reviews (June 2004)

"This short, thoughtful novel, written as Mary's travel diary, is entertaining and features a believable eleven-year-old protagonist..." Horn Book Guide (October 2004)

Published June 2004
ISBN: 1-58234-869-3
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I was inspired to create the character of Mary Margaret after meeting many endearing and spunky kids in my preschool. I wondered what they'd be like when they were ten to twelve years old. The story, journey, and setting of MERMAID MARY MARGARET were inspired by my connection to my grandmother. She told me about her childhood on the island of Rhodes in Greece. She always wanted to go back to visit "the old country" as she called it, but she never had a chance. While I never went to Rhodes with my grandmother, I decided to take my character, Mary Margaret, on a cruise to the Greek islands with her grandmother.

Mary Margaret is spunky, funny, smart, and endearing, and she now seems like a very real person to me. I'd like to take her on more adventures because she is a lot of fun to be around.

Visit MermaidMary.com for more information about MERMAID MARY MARGARET, OR click here for a hint of where she might journey in her next novel.