What's New?

Anchors aweigh! LIFEBOAT 12, my debut middle grade novel about a true but little-known WWII event, just went into a second printing. In a *STARRED* review, SLJ says, "This stirring novel-in-verse based on a true story is an edge-of-your-seat survival tale, an extensively researched work of historical fiction, and an exemplar of the form." The Nerdy Book Club called it one of the best novels in verse of the year! 

 

Also new is SHAKING THINGS UP: 14 Young Women Who Changed the World. Take a look at my interview with Mr. Schu and the book trailer here.

  

 

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The Christopher Award! 

Blown away to have Ada's Violin awarded the 2017 Christopher Award for books, ages 8 and up. The medal is inscribed with the words "Better to Light One Candle Than to Curse the Darkness" and is given annually to books, movies and television shows "that affirm the highest values of the human spirit." Congratulations to all the other winners, including the children's book authors and illustrators of Baby Wren and the Great Gift; What Do You Do With a Problem; Ida, Always; Soar; and Unbound.

 

                                     The awards ceremony with Father Jonathan Morris and Ada's Violin illustrator

                                     Sally Wern Comport

A Day to Remember

On April 6, ADA'S VIOLIN was awarded Bank Street's 2017 Flora Steiglitz Straus Award for children's literature, alongside Congressman John Lewis's MARCH and Caren Stelson's SACHIKO. The award is given anually to a "distinguished work of nonfiction which serves as an inspiration to young people." And I got to meet illustrator Sally Wern Comport for the first time!

 

As a long-time devotee of Bank Street, this recognition means the world to me. Heartfelt thanks to the Children's Book Committee and congratulations to all the other winners. Find out more here

 

 

P.S. It wasn't until I got home that I discovered that LEAPS AND BOUNCE and MISSION: BACK TO SCHOOL were also listed in Bank Street's Best Children's Books of the Year

 

 

Diving into a New Book

Working 24/7 on a thrilling new project. More news when I come up for air! 

Bluebonnet Books

ADA is nominated for the 2017-2018 Texas Bluebonnet Award. Thank you, Texas librarians and kids, and congrats to all. I've read a bunch of these and can't wait to check out the rest!

 

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Mock Caldecotts and Siebert Smackdowns

Every year teachers around the country get their kids buzzing about books and the ALA Youth Media Awards (held at the end of January) by holding their own mock competitions. Author Melissa Stewart explains how it works in this blog post and teacher Michele Knott talks about how these projects enourage young readers to look through a critical lens. Thanks for sharing these photos with me and congrats to all the winners! 

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Happy Holidays to All! 

 

Best Books of Year Lists

Love this time of year when everyone looks back at the books published in the past 12 months and remembers the ones that wowed us; the ones that made us giggle, shed a tear, or mull over a big idea; the ones we couldn't wait to share with kids. So many riches in 2016! I have more favorites than I could possibly name, but here are two picture books I thought broke the mould:

 

And when one of your own books makes a Best Book of the Year list? What a gift! Thanks to these sites for including ADA'S VIOLIN on your lists:

 

International Reading Association: Notable Books for a Global Society 2017

 

NCTE Orbis Pictus Award: Recommended Book for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children

 

New York Public Library: 100 Best Books for Kids 2016

 

Center for the Study of Multicultural Studies: Best Books of 2016 

 

California Reading Association: Eureka Excellence in Nonfiction Gold Medal

 

SLJ and Fuse 8's 2016 Nonfiction Picture Books selected by Betsy Bird

 

The 2016 Nerdies: Nonfiction Picture Books

 

All the Wonders: Best of 2016 Nonfiction Picture Books

 

So You Want to Write a Children's Book

Another highlight of the month was this sold-out, full-day workshop hosted by the Fairfield Public Library in Fairfield, CT. Kudos to Town Librarian Karen Ronald and her staff and especially to event organizer (and children's book illustrator) MaryJo Scott for a fabulous day! 

 

                Jennifer Thermes, Deborah Freedman, me, Karlin Gray, Tracy Newman.

               Not pictured: Ann Rockwell, Lizzy Rockwell

 

 

 

                             Michaela MacColl, Ann Haywood Leal, Christine Pakkala,

                             Susan Ross, Elise Broach, Tony Abbott, Nora Raleigh Baskin,

                             and Moderator Susannah Richards

 

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Author Visits

I'd love to come to your event! Click here to contact me about scheduling a visit to your school, library, bookstore or book festival.

 

 

Download my Author Visit Brochure to get detailed information about my school and library presentations, along with testimonials and pricing.
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Upcoming Events

  • March 9, 2019

    "To Tell the Truth:

    Using Children's Nonfiction

    to Raise Global Awareness" 

    Keynote Speaker

    Florida Connected

    Conference

    Florida Museum of Natural History
    University of Florida Cultural Plaza
    3215 Hull Road
    Gainesville, FL 32611-2710

    floridaconnected

    (All day)
  • May 4, 2019

    Hudson Children's

    Book Festival

    215 Harry Howard Ave. 
    Hudson, NY 12534

    hudsonchildrensbookfestival.com

    10:00am to 3:00pm
  • October 5, 2019

    Chappaqua Children's

    Book Festival

    Robert E. Bell Middle School
    50 Senter St, Chappaqua, NY 10514

    ccbfestival.org

    10:00am to 4:00pm