“The story is humorous, and the adorable illustrations of each character add much to the text. This book introduces young readers to the mystery genre as the characters search for clues and put the pieces together. . . . A strong continuation to the series. . . .” —School Library Journal

Dori Hillestad Butler is the author of more than 60 books for young readers including the two-time Geisel Honor award winning King & Kayla series, the Edgar award winning Buddy Files series, the Treasure Troop series, the Dear Beast series and the Haunted Library series. Her books have appeard on ALSC Notable, Bank Street College Best Books of the Year, Junior Library Guild, CCBC Choice, Booklist Editor’s Choice and more than 20 state award lists.

Dori has also been a ghost writer for the Boxcar Children and other popular series, and she’s written magazine stories, educational materials, plays, book reviews, character sketches for a mystery game and questions for a trivia game. She’s served as a judge on multiple Edgar award committees and has been an active library volunteer, therapy dog partner and mentor to many young writers. She loves visiting schools and libraries all over the country, either in person or virtually, and is eager to share her love of story with readers and writers of all ages. She grew up in southern Minnesota, spent 19 years in Iowa, and now lives in the Seattle area.

The Treasure Troop Series

Penguin Workshop |
Children’s

From Edgar Award Winner Dori Hillestad Butler comes a new chapter book mystery series, The Treasure Troop! Join Marly, Isla, and Sai, three code-cracking kids on the hunt for an old neighbor’s hidden treasure.

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Dear Beast Series

Holiday House |
Children’s

This funny and heartwarming collaboration between Geisel Honor and Edgar Award-winning author Dori Hillestad Butler and bestselling illustrator Kevan Atteberry is a tribute to the love of a good pet – and the joy found in new friendship. With adorable full-color illustrations on every spread, the series is a fun read for parents to share with kids.

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King & Kayla Series

Peachtree |
Children’s

“A great introduction to mysteries.” ―Booklist

A lovable dog helps his human girl solve mysteries in this easy-to-read mystery series.

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The Haunted Library Series

Grosset & Dunlap |
Children’s

A brand-new young chapter book series from Edgar Award winner Dori Hillestad Butler!

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The Buddy Files Series

Albert Whitman & Company |
Children’s

“My name is King. I am a dog. I am also a detective.”

Mystery fans and dog lovers will be swept up in Dori Hillestad Butler’s funny, satisfying story… and left eager for Buddy’s next adventure.

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Large Group Presentations

What is an Author? (Grades K-1)
I talk about what an author is, what an author does, how being an author is different from being an illustrator, the difference between fiction and nonfiction. My presentation is very interactive and I stress that the students are all authors just like I am.

45 minutes. Any size group.

From Dream to Reality (Grades 2-4)
I talk about how I became an author, the stories behind my books for 2nd-4th graders, where I find ideas, and my writing/revision process. I also talk about therapy dogs and point of view. I give students the tools to write their own fiction stories and I stress the importance of having a goal (whether that goal be writing or something else) and working toward it.

45 minutes. Any size group.

From Dream to Reality (Grades 4-6)
I talk about how I became an author, the stories behind my books for 4th-6th graders, where I find ideas, and my writing/revision process. This presentation goes into more detail on my writing process than the grades 2-4 presentation. I give students the tools to write their own fiction stories and I stress the importance of having a goal (whether that goal be writing or something else) and working toward it.

Choose 45-minute presentation or 60-minute presentation.

The 60-minute presentation includes an interactive demonstration of how a book gets published. I will need space at the front of the room for 14 students to be up there with me. I will also need a table to hold props for this demonstration.

Building a Life as a Children’s Book Author (Middle/High School)
I talk about what it’s like to be a writer, where I find ideas, the writing/revising process, careers for writers, and how to get published.

45 minutes. Any size group.

Writing Workshops

It’s Okay to Get Emotional: A Workshop on Writing with Emotional Impact
Begins with a brief discussion of emotion, why it’s such an important element of fiction writing, and tools authors use to convey emotion in their work. Then students will write a short piece demonstrating what they’ve learned.45 minutes. 4th-6th grade. 30 students or less

How Character and Plot Work Together
Which is most important in a fiction story? The character or the plot? Which comes first in the development of a good fiction story? I’ll show students how these two elements come together and how characters affect plot and plot affects character. Students use a worksheet to pre-plan their story, then write a short piece demonstrating what they’ve learned.

45 minutes. Can be adapted to any level 4th grade to adult. 30 students or less.

What? You Mean it’s Not Already Perfect? (A Workshop on Revising Fiction)
No story comes out perfect the very first time. Every author must revise. It’s simply part of the process. I think it’s the best part of the process. But sometimes it’s hard to know what needs to be done. Revision is about more than simply changing a few lines here and there. The word revision means “to see again.” Through discussion and an in-depth handout, I’ll help your students see their work through fresh eyes as they discover new ways to look at their characters, their plot, their beginnings/middles/ends, their sensory details and all their other story elements.

45 minutes. Can be adapted to any level 4th grade to adult. 30 students or less.

Artist-in-Residence
I also offer full week workshops that focus on a different element each day; ideas, character, plot, peer critiquing and revision.
45 minutes/session.

Can be adapted to any level 4th grade to adult. 30 students or less.

Presentations for Adults

Five Lessons Learned from a Lifetime of Writing
Dori talks about how she became an author, the stories behind a couple of her books, her writing/revision process, what it was like to win the Edgar award, what it was like to face a public challenge to one of her books.

60 minutes. High School/College/Adult. Any size group. Appropriate for SCBWI and other writer’s conferences, colleges and universities, and library groups.

Writing Mysteries for Kids
Begins with an overview of the history of the children’s mystery genre and how mysteries vary for different age groups, then moves into the elements of mystery fiction and how mystery authors craft their stories. Also includes discussion of how much is too much violence in a children’s mystery and censorship.

60 minutes. Adult. Any size group. Appropriate for SCBWI and other writer’s conferences, colleges and universities, and library groups.

Creating Series for Kids
Begins with an overview of the history of kids’ series books, why series appeal to kids, then moves into a nuts and bolts discussion on how to create a successful children’s series.

60 minutes. Adult. Any size group. Appropriate for SCBWI and other writer’s conferences, colleges and universities, and library groups.

Oh no! My Book Has Been Challenged. Now what?
Most book challenges are done quietly. Often the author doesn’t even know her book has been challenged. But sometimes the author does know. And sometimes the challenge becomes very public. Dori appeared on Fox TV’s Fox and Friends with a babysitter who challenged her My Mom’s Having a Baby. This book continues to face challenges all over the country and has risen as high as #4 on ALA’s list of most challenged books. Dori discusses her experience and offers suggestions for how to deal with the fact that not everybody likes your book, what you can do if your book is ever challenged, how to work with your publisher to support the library or school where your book was challenged, what your responsibilities are as an author, how to deal with nasty e-mails and unwanted media attention, and how to be professional and approach the situation with grace.

60 minutes. Adult. Any size group. Appropriate for SCBWI and other writer’s conferences, colleges and universities, and library groups.

Dori’s Downloadable Activities and Guides

All of Dori’s Books

Dori’s Author Appearances

Dori’s Hometown Bookstore | Order Signed Books! Contact Margaret or Joanne

Honors, Awards & Recognition

Three Time Washington State Book Award Nominee | Books for Young Readers
Edgar Award | Best Juvenile Mystery
Two Time Theodor Seuss Geisel Honoree
Black-Eyed Susan Award
ALSC Notable Book
Bank Street College Best Book of the Year
CCBC Choice
Booklist Editor’s Choice

Media Kit

By clicking the link below your will be directed to a Google Docs Folder
where you can download author photos and cover images.

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