DR. Z AND MATTY TAKE TELEGRAPH Ari Rosenschein  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~   GENRE:  Young Adult


Ari Rosenschein


GENRE:  Young Adult 



DR. Z AND MATTY TAKE TELEGRAPH Ari Rosenschein  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~   GENRE:  Young Adult
It’s the late ’90s—the final days before smartphones and the internet changed the teenage landscape forever. Zack and his mother have moved from Tempe to Berkeley for a fresh start, leaving behind Zack’s father after a painful divorce. A natural athlete, Zack makes the water polo team which equals social acceptance at his new school. Yet he’s more drawn to Matthias, a rebellious skater on the fringes, who introduces him to punk rock, record stores, and the legendary Telegraph Avenue. 

As their friendship intensifies, Matthias’s behavior reminds Zack of his absent dad, driving a wedge between him and his mother. Complicating matters is Zaylee, a senior who boosts Zack’s confidence but makes him question his new buddy, Matthias. Faced with all these changes, Zack learns that when life gets messy, he might have to become his own best friend.

 Dr. Z and Matty Take Telegraph is about how a friendship can challenge who we are, how we fit in, and where we’re going. 



My eyes catch the main event: Matthias, shirtless again, owning every inch of the bowl. No matter how little I know about skateboarding mechanics, it’s obvious the dude’s form is immaculate. I stand transfixed as he slides smoothly down one side of the bowl and up the other, like a weight on a pendulum, his head peering back over his shoulder, carefree. After gaining momentum, he hoists his lithe body over the top and holds perfectly still, one hand on his board, the other gripping the lip of the bowl. It’s dazzling. 

As soon as he breaks the pose, a small crowd erupts. “Sick handplant, Matthias,” yells a kid in a yellow Carhart jacket. 

Everything looks straight out of a movie. Skaters in shirts with blocky logos give each other high fives. Younger kids sit on the sidelines, boards glued to their hands, watching the action but not ready to dive in.

 When we read On the Road during freshman year, Dad taught me a term that stuck with me: subculture. I’ve got no desire to ride a skateboard. But this vibe? I want to be a part of it. I’m swept up on a wave of California freedom.

 Danny shoves an elbow into my belly. “Matthias is a monster skater, right?”

 “Never seen skating like that,” I say. “Except on TV or in a movie.”



Topic: Did you have a minor character who insisted on playing a larger role in the story. If so, please tell us about it. And if not, please tell me how you get the characters in your head to behave.

Dr. Z and Matty Take Telegraph contains several characters who we only get to know from a distance—Danny Chang, Coach Reardon, and Declan Duffy all come to mind. Still, Silas Alexander, Zack’s father, is an outlier, as we only encounter him through his written communications, poetry, and Zacks’ memories. Silas never gets the chance to make a case for himself through dialogue or physical behavior. Yet, his presence is critical to the book. Indeed, as my writing progressed, it became clear that Silas was a massive part of the story despite never appearing physically in a scene. He is a specter that hovers over Dr. Z and Matty Take Telegraph just as he hangs over his son’s life. As a result, I had to explore unique ways to involve him in the storyline.

Silas’s poetry and the way he decorates his packages seemed to grow organically. The aspects of himself that he reveals to his son are of great significance. It’s a game of hide and seek, and Silas becomes increasingly willing to show his son who he is becoming. It would have been easy to let this absent dad, this ghost father, exist primarily in recollection and conversations between Zack and his mother. But every time those packages arrive from Silas, the size and power of the character continue to grow and develop. By the end of the book, I feel we know Silas as well as many characters who have actual exchanges with Zack.


AUTHOR Bio and Links: 

DR. Z AND MATTY TAKE TELEGRAPH Ari Rosenschein  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~   GENRE:  Young Adult
Ari Rosenschein is a Seattle-based author who grew up in the Bay Area. Books and records were a source of childhood solace, leading Ari to a teaching career and decades of writing, recording, and performing music. Along the way, he earned a Grammy shortlist spot, landed film and TV placements, and co-wrote the 2006 John Lennon Songwriting Contest Song of the Year. 

In his writing, Ari combines these twin passions. Coasting, his debut short story collection, was praised by Newfound Journal as “introducing us to new West Coast archetypes who follow the tradition of California Dreaming into the 21st century.” Dr. Z and Matty Take Telegraph (Fire & Ice YA) is his first young adult novel. 

Website: https://arirosenschein.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/arirosenschein

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/arirosenschein/

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@arirosenschein 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CYQKNBKQ  



Ari Rosenschein will be awarding a signed paperback copy of Dr. Z and Matty Take Telegraph (US only) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter. 

Post a Comment


  1. We appreciate you hosting today - thank you!

  2. This looks like a book I will thoroughly enjoy. Thanks for sharing.

  3. This is so interesting and the cover is very eye catching.

  4. It was a pleasure to write this post! Thanks for having me!