A fourth grade class in St. Louis wrote to tell me they’d found a mistake in Stolen Children. On page 142, Detective Rockport suddenly, for one sentence, becomes Detective Rockford. I grabbed a copy, found the page, and discovered they were right.
I have no explanation or excuse for this mistake. I goofed, plain and simple, but it astonishes me that an error such as this gets published. I proof-read the galleys of each book more than once. My editor does, too. There’s a professional copy editor who goes through everything, line by line. Yet none of us caught this.
Even more surprising is the fact that nobody has shown me the error before. Usually typos or other mistakes are found within a few weeks of publication, and pointed out to the author. Stolen Children was published in 2008. It’s been nominated for many state young reader awards (and won one, so far – New York) which means it’s being read in a lot of schools. Book store sales are good, too, yet this was the first I knew that I’d made a mistake.
Congratulations to the sharp-eyed readers in Missouri!