About the Author - Carol J. Amato

I knew I wanted to be a writer when I was in the 4th grade. The stories I wrote always had horses in them, and I gave them to my teachers to read. I don't remember that they gave me much help with my writing, though, unfortunately.

I'm a real animal lover and grew up owning horses. I used to show them, and since I lived in Oregon at that time, this often meant riding in the rain and in weather cold enough to see my breath. I froze to death at many a horse show!  I showed in Half-Arab shows, since my horse was an Arabian but not fullblooded. I also belonged to a 4-H horse club for many years, and exhibiting in the County Fair was always fun. In addition, I was a 4-H Junior Leader.

I belonged to the Girl Scouts, too. I started out in Brownies, then flew up. Because of my love of scouting, I made one of the characters in The Phantom Hunters an avid Girl Scout. Are you surprised her nickname is "Scout"?

Another of my interests is space and science fiction, so after I finished my first western novel, I started writing sci-fi. I sold a few short stories, then wrote a book. Unfortunately, the book never sold. Like the western, it is languishing in a drawer. That's typical for writers--their first books usually don't sell.

I've since published 22 books. While many of them are nonfiction, my special love is The Phantom Hunters. The main character, Anny, is 12 and she can see ghosts. Her twin sister, Scout, can't. Because Anny's family thinks she is lying or making things up when she mentions the things she sees, she is in constant conflict with them. Be sure to read the first book in the series, The Lost Treasure of the Golden Sun, to find out what happens to Anny.

I recently finished Book #2, The Secret of Blackhurst Manor, set in Lincolnshire, England. It will be out sometime in 2012. For more details, see the description under "Books."