Five minutes with Sarah Crossan, on Apple and Rain and leaving books on a train

Published on: 30 January 2015

Sarah Crossan/Apple RainSarah Crossan, author of Apple and Rain, talks about leaving books on a train for people to find, and her novel, ONE, about a set of conjoined twins who, despite their disabilities, live life to the fullest.

We all really loved Apple and Rain here at Booktrust, it's a great coming-of-age story. Is there something particular about the coming-of-age story that appeals to you?

It's hard being a teenager. It's hard living in a world where adults tell you what to do and how to live yet make plenty of horrible mistakes themselves. Part of what I'm doing when I write is to encourage young people to work out for themselves how to make good decisions rather than leaning on adults for this help because adults can't always be trusted to know what's best for the young people in their lives. That isn't to say there aren't responsible adults out there; young people simply need to know how to spot them. Mr Gaydon in Apple and Rain for example - he's definitely someone to be trusted.

You've written a really special book about the unbreakable bond between two sisters, could you tell us a bit more?

It's called ONE and it's about a set of conjoined twins. I've always been fascinated by twins generally, but I'm hoping readers will fall in love with these two girls called Tippi and Grace who, despite their disabilities, live life to the absolute fullest. Also, it's in verse, and I was delighted to write in that form again.

What do you like most about being an author?

I like everything about being an author apart from filing my own taxes. I love meeting readers. I love meeting other writers. I love taking part in festivals and other events. I love spending time on my own playing with language. What's not to love?

Did we see you tweeting something about leaving a lot of books on trains? Tell us more!

Because I have a US and a UK publisher, and because the books usually come out in both hardback and paperback, I do tend to have lots and lots of spare copies. So whenever I head into London on the train, I take a few with me and leave them around the place with a bookmark and message inside. My aim is to have someone who wouldn't normally read a novel pick up one of my books and say, 'Let's have a look.' Pretty simple really!

If teens enjoyed Apple and Rain, what would you recommend them to read next?

Hmmm. It depends what they liked about Apple and Rain, but teen and middle grade books with a literary component that I've read recently and loved have been the following:

More from Sarah

The Weight of Water

Author: Sarah Crossan

This beautiful book is written in verse and captures 13-year-old Kasienka’s emotions and experiences perfectly

Read more about The Weight of Water

More from Sarah


Author: Sarah Crossan

This is a book that goes straight into your heart and once it is there, won't leave. One is a brilliant, beautiful, and heart-wrenching novel that is not to be missed.

Read more about One