Ms. Melendez (commonly known as “Tonie”) was born in Baltimore, Maryland. She currently lives in Patterson, California, the apricot capital of the world. Growing up, she always had her head in a book and continues to do so. She recalls her mom saying, “Lights out! You have school tomorrow.” She replied, “Ok, Mom,” but a few minutes later when the coast was clear, the lights would pop back on. She would reach under her bed and pull out a book. “Just a few lines before falling asleep,” she would say. Her mom never knew.
She works for the Veterans Administration as a nurse and has received numerous nursing awards for her dedicated service to veterans.
Her son, Francisco, lives in Las Vegas. He’s the joy of her life. She smiles when thinking about all the times they had spent together reading books when he was a child.
The inspiration for her children’s book Too Much MacTiggle came from her little black Scottish terrier named Rhoj, aka Doodles. The nosiest dog ever—a combination of Scooby Doo and Inspector Clouseau all rolled up into one little fur ball. After reading this book, you’ll know why she named the delicious cookies loved by the MacTiggles “Crunchy Peanut Butter Snickerdoodle Cookies.”