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July 1, 2022

Author to visit Barnes & Noble with new novel

Can a girl who’s spent most of her life migrating from one shantytown to another and a privileged banker’s daughter ever see eye-to-eye? This is the question Peggy Simmons, a peach farmer’s daughter who is friends with both, wrestles with in Wendelin Van Draanen’s new novel, “The Peach Rebellion,” set in California in 1947.

Van Draanen will be visiting Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 6825 Camino Arroyo in Gilroy, on May 28 from 2-3pm.

Van Draanen is the author of more than 30 novels, including “Flipped,” which became a Warner Brothers film directed by Rob Reiner. With her new offering she showcases a slice of history when women who’d stepped into non-traditional roles during World War II were expected to revert to their former, more subservient lives after the war ended. It explores themes such as bridging social differences, challenging societal norms and gender equality.

“Everyone has a story that we don’t really know or understand, and their view of life stems from it,” Van Draanen said. “It’s only by listening with an open heart that we can begin to bridge divides.”

Van Draanen is a lifelong California resident who taught high school for many years. 

“With ‘The Peach Rebellion,’ I wanted to create a compelling story that would have the reader walk a mile in someone else’s shoes,” Van Draanen said. “Also, what makes a peach so delicious is the combination of really varied elements—earth, air, water and soil. This story suggests we should emulate that as a society.”

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