Sunday, November 27, 2022



Notable Native People: 50 Indigenous Leaders, 
Dreamers, and Changemakers from Past and Present

Written by Adrienne Keene (Cherokee)
Illustrated by Ciara Sana (Chamora)
Published by Ten Speed Press
Reviewed by Jean Mendoza

I am so happy to have this book, which does even more than its cover indicates. In a world where Native people still are so frequently treated as invisible, or as stereotypes, Adrienne Keene (co-host of the podcast All My Relations) provides realistic, positive pictures of Native lives. Some years back, I wrote here about a time my young grandson sang at the top of his voice about "500 brave Native Americans" -- mis-hearing the lyrics to an old whaling song, and leading me to wonder if we could in fact find solid information for children about 500 notable Indigenous people. Since that time, a few new books have been published about Native folks who aren't 19-century military leaders. This is one, and I've already given a copy to my grandson's family.

This is one of our "short and sweet" reviews -- a quick look at why we feel enthusiastic about a book.

Reason #1 to recommend Notable Native People: Thoughtfully-chosen one-page bios.

The sketches are brief and reader-friendly but substantial about Native people who have had (are having) a positive impact on their communities and the wider world. Fifty of them!! Plus a bonus of 15 even shorter bios of additional Indigenous notables! This feels like such a gift to young people who want and need to have dozens of Indigenous "leaders, dreamers, and changemakers" lighting the path as they decide what to make of their own lives. Many of the bios incorporate direct quotes from the subjects -- letting them speak for themselves.

Reason #2: Balanced representation, including representation of Black Native and LGBTQ+ people. 

Adrienne Keene explains that her process of selecting people to be in the book was collaborative. And she went over the final list with community members and friends to ensure that it was inclusive. As a result,

"The people in this book represent a small slice of the Native experience, balanced across the three broad cultural groups of American Indian, Alaska Native, and Kanaka Maoli, as well as various gender identities, ages, locations, tribal affiliations, and work." 

You can read more of what Adrienne Keene says about working on the book here.

Reason #3: Sections that highlight key issues affecting Native people.
In several places, the text shifts focus from individuals to ongoing issues that have affected Native communities and the 50 notables. These summaries of such topics as "Settler Colonialism 101", "Who Belongs?" and "Representation Matters" give context to the Native lives being discussed. Great info for readers!

Reason #4: The illustrations.

Using photographs to illustrate biographies lets readers see a person as they were in a given moment, but sometimes photos don't age well. Many of us can remember seeing a photograph of someone famous, and feeling distant from the subject because of outdated hair style, clothing, glasses, or other superficial aspect of appearance. And if the bio is about someone who lived before cameras were used, a photo won't be available. So Ciara Sana's portraits, which are expressive, warm, and pleasing to the eye, engage readers and (I think) extend the life of the book in ways that might not be possible with photographs.

Librarians and educators: Put multiple copies of this book on your shelves, and encourage young people to find out even more about the 50+ notable Natives on its pages! 

Friday, November 25, 2022


Back in October of 2020, I wrote about Dino-Thanksgiving by Lisa Wheeler, illustrated by Barry Gott. It is about dinosaurs gathering to eat at thanksgiving. At one point they gather around the television to watch the "Redscales" game. Players wear uniforms the same colors as the NFL Team now known as the Washington Commanders. 

People at the publishing house saw my post and replied to say they would be making edits to reprints. 

A few days ago, Carol Hinz, Associate Publisher of Millbrook Press and Carolrhoda Books (imprints within Lerner Publishing) wrote about the edits on Lerner's blog. They changed the name of the team name to Rippers. The uniforms they wear are now different, too. Below on left is my screen capture of the first edition. I added the arrows to draw attention to the team name and uniform colors. On right is a sample of the edits Hinz wrote about.  

Those changes, I think, indicate progress. Lots of people at Lerner were involved in the changes. Each one of them now know something they might not have known, before. 

I'm writing this post on Friday, November 25--the day after the 2022 observance of thanksgiving. Some Native families gather on that day to visit and eat, but many do not. Many choose to mark the day as a National Day of Mourning and have been doing so, since 1970, in Plymouth Massachusetts. 

I'm glad to see that change to the mascot name in the series. 

This particular thanksgiving book doesn't repeat the the popular--and wrong--story of Pilgrims and Indians feasting together that hides the facts of imperialism and genocide. That story is one of the many U.S. myths that hurts everyone--Native and not--because it looks away from the horrific things one people can do to another. 

I think there was a time in my life when I thought that the best option was to mark the day as one of gratitude without the Pilgrim and Indian story but in a way, that's like sports teams getting rid of mascots but keeping the team name. It doesn't work. Opposing teams will use those team names to taunt the fans whose team holds that name. Without a massive educational effort to help others see why the mascot is not ok, it lives on in peoples hearts and too often--in their actions.  I've seen that firsthand at the University of Illinois in Urbana Champaign. The mascot itself is gone but the team name is unchanged and fans of the now-absent mascot continue wearing apparel that is easy to get. Worse is that fans of mascots will go on to work in positions where their actions--like doing reenactments of "the first thanksgiving"--will misinform children. 

All of this is part of a cycle that must be interrupted! There are a few new picture books that seek to interrupt the Pilgrim and Indians thanksgiving story. I've not studied them yet. 

One is If You Lived During the Plimoth Thanksgiving by Chris Newell (citizen of the Passamaquoddy Tribe) and illustrated by Winona Nelson (Leech Lake Band of Minnesota Chippewa). Dennis Zotigh at the National Museum of the American Indian has an article about it at Smithsonian Magazine: 'If You Lived During the Plimoth Thanksgiving' by Chris Newell Exposes New Truths about the American Holiday. 

Another is Keepunumuk: Weeâchumun's Thanksgiving Story written by Danielle Greendeer (Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Citizen), Alexis Bunten (Unangan/Yup'ik), Anthony Perry (Chickasaw), and illustrated by Garry Meeches, Sr. (Anishinaabe). In my quick look at this book, I see a lot I like. I groaned at the back matter for the inclusion of a map by a mapmaker whose methods received criticism from many who observed that he misrepresented their nations and people on his maps. For more information about that, I did a couple of posts here at AICL

A few years ago, We Are Grateful/Otsaliheliga by Traci Sorell (Cherokee) came out. I like what she did in her book and highly recommended it. Much older is Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message by Chief Jake Swamp (Mohawk). These two don't take the pilgrims as their starting point. 

Before social media took off, people would submit comments to AICL's posts but that dropped significantly as people chose to respond to AICL's posts on Twitter. Media analysts say that Twitter is on its last legs. Your contributions to conversations are likely going to be lost. If you're leaving Twitter, we invite you to submit your comments here. I'm really interested in your observations about thanksgiving and thanksgiving books. 

Friday, November 11, 2022

Ku'daa, University of New Mexico Native Alumni Chapter!

I am deeply honored that the University of New Mexico's Native American Alumni Chapter chose me to receive one of its Outstanding Alumni Awards for 2022.  I received this stunningly beautiful plate, painted by Sherry L. Aragon of Acoma Pueblo

Here's the flyer announcing the gala:

Due to prior commitments, I wasn't able to travel to Albuquerque for the gala, but I did send in a recorded message for them. The gala itself was on the same day as the Brackeen v Haaland oral argument at the Supreme Court on Nov 9. This is what I said:

Good evening. 

This morning, Native people from across the country were gathering in Washington DC or online to listen to the Supreme Court oral arguments in Brackeen v Haaland. 

I’m living in the San Francisco Bay area right now. Wherever I am, I talk about kids and books. or more precisely, the ways that stories in books tell others who we are. That work is why I can’t be with you tonight. I’m in the midst of working with teachers in this area. 

I tell teachers and librarians that our status as sovereign native nations has been left out of popular, classic, and award winning books. Those books shape what people know about us. They shape what the Brackeen’s know about us. Those books are part of why the Indian Child Welfare Act is at risk, right now.

Those books are a threat to our sovereignty. 

I’m grateful to UNM’s Native American Alumni Chapter for selecting me to receive this award. It acknowledges the importance of the work I do to help educators understand what is wrong with those popular and award-winning books. 

And it acknowledges the work I do to bring visibility to Native writers who are creating books that affirm who we are. 

In October, an absolutely terrific picture book by two Native people came out. That book is Forever Cousins. Written by Laurel Goodluck and illustrated by Jonathan Nelson, it is about cousins growing up together in the Bay Area. 


In the Author’s Note, Goodluck writes about the Indian Relocation Act. It is why she grew up in the Bay Area. She also writes about sovereignty! 

I talked about Forever Cousins in a workshop I did earlier this week. After the workshop, one of the participants approached me. She was deeply touched by Goodluck’s book. She is from Tesuque Pueblo, and like Laurel, grew up in the Bay Area. 

Forever Cousins is one book, but it sits amongst a growing number of books by Native writers and illustrators who are creating books that should be in every classroom, and every library.

Like many of you, I’m deeply worried about Brackeen v. Haaland, and, I am confident that as we continue to raise our voices and use books by Native writers, we are disrupting the harms done by older classics that misrepresent who we are. Buy books by Native writers, and talk about them to everyone you know. Help me to bring visibility to books that lift our children and our nations. 


I offer my congratulations to Nicolle Gonzales. She, too, was honored by the Native Alumni chapter. She founded the Changing Woman Initiative. Here's a video of her:

If you are able to support her work, go to the Changing Woman Initiative's website. Down at the bottom of the page is a Donate button. 

Sunday, November 06, 2022

"Never fear," said Gramps. "My great, great grandmother was one quarter Native Bear and I am ready to share."

This morning on Twitter, I saw a tweet that included a photo of a page from a Berenstain Bears book. The person who shared it characterized it as 'yikes' and most of the people who commented about it agreed. Because a lot of what we see online is satire or parody, I wondered if someone was playing around with the Berenstain Bears books. 

Some of the books have stereotypical content and are cringeworthy. In Berenstain Bears Go to Camp (published in 1982 by Random House) shows Grizzly Bob in a feathered headdress and fringed buckskin. In Berenstain Bears Give Thanks (published in 2009 by Zonderkids, a Christian publishing house) the bear family has a turkey named Squanto. This is supposed to be their dinner on Thanksgiving Day but Sister Bear objects and they decide to keep Squanto as a pet. 

I looked for the book where Gramps says his great, great grandmother was "one quarter Native Bear" and found it right away. It is in The Berenstain Bears Thanksgiving Blessings. Like Berenstain Bears Give Thanks, it is from Zonderkids, the Christian publishing house. It came out in 2013.

Thanksgiving Blessings is one of the too-many books that puts forth the feel-good Thanksgiving story (in this one, the "Native Bears" gave the "Pilgrim Bears" food and they all shared in a great feast), but it is also one of those that goes a step further by having a character claim to be Native. That character talks about what they will "share" with others. Some readers will see "share" and think it is a good moral lesson, but some of us read that and see it as an attempt to depict harmony that looks away from the facts of history.

Here, it is Gramps saying that his great, great Grandmother was "one quarter Native Bear." Here's a screencap of the page (I put the red arrow there to draw your attention to Gramps and this bogus claim):

And here's the text on that page:
The whole family helped set the table. It was, indeed, a magnificent Thanksgiving feast. 
"It's a shame there aren't any Native Bears here to share it with us," said Brother. 
"Never fear," said Gramps, seating himself at the head of the table. "My great, great grandmother was one quarter Native Bear an I am ready to share. Let's eat!"
If you follow Native people on social media, you know that there are many conversations about people who claim they are Native. Social media makes it possible for this topic to be more visible than ever before. 

I ran into these claims a lot in the 1990s when I was a student at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). It had a stereotypical mascot they called "Chief Illiniwek." Before I arrived there, Native students, staff and faculty had been asking the university to get rid of it. 

Without fail, we encountered fans who claimed that they are part Native and--with that claim to Native identity--said that the mascot was a good thing. Some of them may have had an ancestor, but some of them were simply recounting family lore, and were using that family lore to dismiss Native people who resist being stereotyped and misrepresented via mascots, children's books, television shows, and movies. 

That dismissal is precisely what I see in Thanksgiving Blessings. Obviously, Mike Berenstain (his parents launched the Berenstain Bears books in the 1960s), uses Gramps and his "one quarter Native Bear" as an attempt to validate the bogus Thanksgiving story. 

If you have a family story that tells us an ancestor was Native and you have no idea what that ancestor's nation was, and you speak from that space of not-knowing, I urge you to stop doing that, especially if you're doing it to counter Native people who speak up about stereotypes, and/or biased and inaccurate information. You are harming the very people you claim to be. You are undermining us. Please stop! 

To learn more about fabricated or unsupported claims to Native identity, you can read through resources I've compiled: Native or Not? And if you see that sort of thing in a children's book, please let me know!

Saturday, October 15, 2022

Dear Kate: An Open Letter to Kate DiCamillo (and Authors of Children's Books)

Update from Debbie on Monday, Oct 17, 2022: Kate DiCamillo responded to me, sharing my letter on her Facebook page. I deeply appreciate her response. Ones like it make me hopeful! Scroll to the bottom of my letter to read her response. 

October 15, 2022

Kate DiCamillo

Dear Kate,

You and I have never met. I'm tribally enrolled at Nambé Owingeh, a sovereign Native Nation in the southwest. In the early 1990s, I moved from Nambé's reservation to Illinois where I began working on a PhD in the College of Education at UIUC. My husband and our little girl went, too. Since then I've written book chapters and articles about depictions of Native peoples in children's books. In 2018, the American Library Association announced that I had been selected to deliver the 2019 Arbuthnot Honor Lecture. I'm pretty sure you know about the Arbuthnot. 

In 2005, I launched American Indians in Children's Literature, and I use it to do in-depth analyses of children's books. Sometimes--like now--I use it to speak directly to a specific author. 

I read Because of Winn Dixie at some point and had positive feelings about it. More recently I realized that it featured Gone With the Wind. And so, on June 17, 2016, I added it to my page, Books that Reference Racist Classics. And then in 2021 I learned that you had removed Gone With the Wind from your book. That was a good decision. I assume you had engaged in conversations with people who asked you to reconsider using it. 

Earlier this week (October 12, 2022) on your Facebook page, you wrote about being with friends and talking about books you and they loved when you were kids. 

You listed books people mentioned, including Island of the Blue Dolphins. As your conversation continued, you talked about how you had learned about those books. Many talked about how it read aloud to them in class. They remembered the teacher who read the book, too, and you wished those teachers could have heard you talking about those memories. 

You noted that reading aloud is a gift. On that, I concur. I have many warm memories of reading aloud to our daughter on our travels from New Mexico to Illinois. 

You closed your Facebook post with
[T]hank you, Mrs. Boyette, for reading Island of the Blue Dolphins to our second grade class.
For you, and the thousands of people who embraced and shared your post, Mrs. Boyette's reading aloud to you is a positive memory but for Native kids--especially ones who are Aleut, memories are not positive. Here is a thread by Dr. Eve Tuck, recounting her experience (I have her permission to share it). She did the thread in response to my critique of the book.

I appreciate the thorough analysis that has done here. As an Aleut person, I can say that the inaccuracies depiction of Aleut people in this book meant that non-Indigenous people said a lot of painful and ignorant things to me, especially as a kid.
I was a kid growing up in a white rural town in Pennsylvania, and usually ours was the only Native family in the community. I attended a school that had multiple copies of this book in classrooms, the library. I remember there even being a door display of this book.
So I grew up in a white community that only knew of Aleuts (Unangan) from this book.
I was taunted for it. I was asked by children and teachers to explain why Aleuts were “so mean.” And no matter what I said about my family, especially my grandmother, it wasn’t believed.
The book was believed over my real-life knowledge of Aleut people.
Fictionalizing an Indigenous community to make them the violent device of your plot line is a totally settler thing to do. O’Dell had no business writing a word “about” our people.
The book says nothing about us. Like Gerald Vizenor’s analysis of the figure of the ‘indian,’ it says more about the violent preoccupations of the settler, and says nothing about Unangan.
The last thing that I will say is that when I think about colonial violence that Aleut people were *actually* experiencing in their/our homelands in the time period that the book was set, it makes me doubly angry about the falsehoods depicted in this book.
But that would never be a best seller.

I'm writing this letter to you today, Kate DiCamillo, to ask you to extend the action you took regarding Gone With the Wind. Teachers are still using Island of the Blue Dolphins. Native children are negatively impacted, and everyone is being mis-educated by the contents of that book. 

Would you please revise your post, asking teachers not to read Island of the Blue Dolphins aloud, and tell them why they should not? Being able to tell them why they should make a different choice will mean that you need to read my critique. Revising your public remarks about the book is important. You would take a leadership role in doing so. You could speak about this at conferences. You and other writers with large followings could be a force for change! 

I'll close with a note to my readers: if you know DiCamillo, please give her a link to this letter. Consider writing to her, yourself. If you would like to comment to me, please do. I welcome thoughts from those who revisit their warm embrace of books. Please refrain from submitting comments that tell me I'm wrong. 


Debbie Reese
Founder, American Indians in Children's Literature
Twitter: @debreese

At 9:48 AM on October 17, DiCamillo responded to my letter. She wrote the following on her FB page:
When I talk to kids about writing, I tell them that one of the most important tools a writer can cultivate is their ability to listen to other people—to be curious about what other people think, and why.
Last week on this page, I wrote about the powerful experience of having a teacher read a book aloud to a class.  
I thanked my second-grade teacher for reading us Island of the Blue Dolphins.  
After that post, Dr. Debbie Reese, founder of American Indians in Children’s Literature, wrote to tell me about how and why Island of the Blue Dolphins has caused pain.  
I read her letter and her article on Island of the Blue Dolphins and what I thought was: EVERYONE needs to read this, so I’m posting her letter here.
Thank you, Dr. Reese. 
I wish Mrs. Boyette had had the chance to read this letter, to know these things. 
And I am grateful to her for reading aloud to second-grade me.

Monday, October 10, 2022

Highly Recommended: FOREVER COUSINS written by Laurel Goodluck; illustrated by Jonathan Nelson

Forever Cousins
Written by Laurel Goodluck (Mandan, Hidatsa and Tsimshian member)
Illustrated by Jonathan Nelson (Diné)
Published by Charlesbridge
Publication Year: 2022
Reviewer: Debbie Reese
Status: Highly Recommended


As I turned the pages of Forever Cousins, I thought back to the early 1990s when we left Nambé's reservation to go to graduate school in Illinois. Our daughter was three years old. She and her cousins were in tears. The always-present playing options were about to change. 

When you start reading Forever Cousins, you'll meet Amanda and Kara and to a lesser degree, Forrest. You'll learn a lot about them. The two girls are together all the time. Sometimes they're doing things most kids in the U.S. do--like make jelly sandwiches--and sometimes they're doing something Native kids do, like dancing at a powwow. On the cover you see both girls have dolls. Those are quite special! They were made for them by their magúu (the author's note tells us that magúu is a Hidatsa word that means grandmother).

We learn that they live in a city and that Kara and her family are moving from the city to the Rez. They'll see each other in a year. A year! In subsequent pages we see the two, both feeling alone while doing the same activity. Amanda is at a powwow in the city (we see tall buildings in the background), holding her doll close as she sits on a folding chair. Kara is at a powwow on the Rez (we see low hills in the background). Her mom offers her some fry bread but she just hugs her doll and shakes her head.  

Throughout, Nelson's illustrations set the story very much in the present day. That's especially evident on the page where the two girls talk to each other using a video platform on their cell phones. Like anyone, we use all the forms of literacy and communication available to us! I like that but I also like the page where Amanda gets a post card from Kara. Finally it is time for Amanda and her family to hit the road! It'll take two days to get to the Rez. Nelson shows us their joy when they cross a state border. That made me smile. When we drove from Illinois to Nambé, we'd cheer just like that when we crossed from Texas into New Mexico! 

Amanda and her family arrive at the reunion, and after some initial shyness, the cousins have a great time and we see the families gathered while a new baby gets his Hidatsa name. It is then time to say their goodbye's. 

The story Goodluck and Nelson share in the pages of Forever Cousins is a joy to read and look at. Like the recent books by Native writers, it has an extensive Author's Note that provides teachers with information that helps them understand why Amanda and Kara and their families aren't on the reservation when the story starts. In her note, Goodluck says that the characters in her book represent her and her cousins growing up in the 1960s and 1970s in the Bay Area suburbs of California. She shares some background about her family and cousins and how the city and the Rez were both home and community. She says:
As a matter of fact, we are dual citizens: first enrolled members of sovereign Tribal Nations and then citizens of the United States. The term "sovereign nation" means a Tribal Nation that governs itself. If it is federally recognized, then it has a governmental relationship with the United States as a nation with a nation.
Those of you who know me probably guess that my heart is soaring as I read those sentences! Teachers: download Affirming Indigenous Sovereignty: A Civics Inquiry by Sarah B. Shear, Leilani Sabsazlian, and Lisa Brown Buchanan. It'll provide you with ideas on how you can incorporate tribal sovereignty into your classroom. 

In the portion of her note titled "From the Reservation to the City" she tells us that her parents moved from their reservation to the city because of the Indian Relocation Act of 1956. It was a federal program that was described as a way for Native people to move to cities and get vocational job training--but there was more to it than that. Goodluck writes:
In actuality, the federal government wanted to erase Native culture by moving Native people to cities so they would adapt to the lifestyles of white people. 
I am so glad to see that sentence in this book! This is the honesty that ought to be in every book! 

She goes on to say that her parents were able to get jobs in the city, but that the government promise of a job did not work for most tribal people. They endured discrimination and racism. I have uncles and aunts who moved to cities for jobs. Some got those jobs and stayed in those cities, others came back very soon. I suggest you read Indian No More because it, too, is about this relocation program. 

I'm sharing the final paragraph in the note because it is so very powerful:
The treatment of Native Americans in the United States was and sometimes still is despicable. But as with the family in this story and with my own family, unjust experiences forge tight bonds between us and make us strong. Our resiliency is rooted in our ceremonies and culture. We have a deep love of home. The land reminds us of our ancestors, storytelling helps us make good decisions, and we continue to have love and loyal family connections that are unbreakable.

Forever Cousins is tribally specific. Both, the author and illustrator, are Native. The story is set in the present day. It can--and should be--read year-round (not confined to a heritage month or day). It is getting a 'highly recommended' label from me, but my enthusiasm for the book is much more than a 'highly recommended' label conveys. With this story and the note, Goodluck and Nelson give teachers or parents information that they can carry with them when they close this book and choose another one that features Native people. They see us as people who live in a city or on a reservation. They can see us as people whose identities and lives as Native people are central to who we are, and who share the same sorts of joys and fears that kids of other cultures do, too. 

Forever Cousins is one of the best books I've read. I'm delighted to read it, to write about it, and to recommend it to everyone.

Monday, August 15, 2022

Debbie--have you seen YOSSEL'S JOURNEY by Kathryn Lasky?

A reader emailed to ask if I've seen Yossel's Journey by Kathryn Lasky. Published by Charlesbridge, it is due out in September of 2022. Here's what I've found so far (I don't have the book but will look for it:) 

Here's the book description from the book's page at Charlesbridge:
When Yossel’s family flees anti-Jewish pogroms in Russia and immigrates to the American Southwest, he worries about making a new home and new friends.

In his family's new store next to the Navajo reservation, Yossel watches their neighbors pass through. He learns lots of words, but he's still too afraid and lonely to try talking to anyone. Making new friends is hard, especially when all your jokes are in a different language. 

A historical picture book about the power of cross-cultural friendships and the joy of finding out the true meaning of home.

The description centers one family but makes no mention of the Navajo child Yossel becomes friends with. His name is Thomas. The story is from Yossel's point of view but I wish the description from Charlesbridge didn't leave out Thomas's name. It is a missed opportunity to nudge readers from the amorphous image of Native people that they likely hold. 

I see reviews from Publishers Weekly and from Kirkus. Both are mostly favorable but these lines stand out. The reviewer at Publisher's Weekly said 
"An author's note and further reading conclude but elide discussion of the government's displacement of Navajo people." 
The reviewer at Kirkus said 
"Given Yossel's history as someone forced to flee his home due to ethnic violence, it's a surprise to see none of the parallel story for Thomas (during roughly the time of the forced deportation of the Navajo by the U.S. government). Instead this is a pleasing, sun-drenched tale of friendship in a new place." 
Over on the Charlesbridge page you can see some interior pages and a review from the Jewish Book Council that tells us the story doesn't have "heavy-handed statements about brotherhood." I'm glad to know it doesn't do that! I've reviewed some of those historical friendship stories and have yet to read one that works. 

One of the interior pages tells us that Yossel and his family are going "near a Navajo Indian Reservation. It is called Two Red Hills." a reservation called "Two Red Hills." Is that a real place? I'm going to talk to Navajo friends and colleagues about that. I know for certain that Jewish people had stores on reservations, so, that part of Lasky's story is based on fact. But is there a Two Red Hills reservation? Editing on August 17 to say that I got a copy of the book and that the author's note states the location is fictional. I added the quote and strike thru at the start of this paragraph today when I got a copy of the book.  

I'm glad to see reviewers noting the omission of Navajo history. As noted, the story is from Yossel's point of view and it likely seems clunky to try to work the Navajo history into the story itself, but I think the reviewers are correct in pointing out the problems of leaving out Navajo history when the entire story is launched due to persecution of a family that ends up on homelands of the Navajo Nation and its people. 

I'll see if I can order the book from a local library and I'll be back with a review.

Thursday, August 11, 2022

Update on STILL THIS LOVE GOES ON by Buffy Sainte-Marie, illustrated by Julie Flett

Note from Debbie on November 12, 2023: I am withdrawing my recommendation of Still This Love Goes On due to an October investigation into Sainte-Marie's identity. I have compiled a list of articles, primarily from Native people, and hope you will read them. There's a lot to go through, and a lot to unlearn and learn. 

Still This Love Goes On
Written by Buffy Sainte-Marie (Cree)
Illustrated by Julie Flett (Cree-Metis)
Published by Greystone Kids
Published in 2022
Reviewed by Debbie Reese
Review Status: Highly Recommended

If Still This Love Goes On is not on your must-buy list yet, put it there right now. Better yet, order it, right now! 

You can read it as a book about seasons. You'll see people and animals on wide landscapes of snow, or fields of grass and flowers... Or, with the references to sweetgrass and drums and jingle dancers, you can read it as a book about Native people. Or, you can sing along with Sainte-Marie! You'll find her singing it on her album, Running For the Drum. If you read music and play an instrument, you can turn to the sheet music at the end of the book.  

Anyone who listens to Native musicians will recognize the name, Buffy Sainte-Marie. Anyone who reads and shares picture books by Native writers will recognize the name, Julie Flett. In other words, Still This Love Goes On is a magnificent gift to us all. 

Monday, August 01, 2022

Acknowledging the 1992 Returning the Gift Festival of Native Writers

The "Returning the Gift" (RTG) conference that took place in Norman Oklahoma in July 1992 is widely recognized by Native writers and scholars for being an early and significant gathering. Geary Hobson and Barbara Torralba Hobson are among the founders of that literary festival. Here's a photo of the people who attended:

When I look over the names of people who were there, I see many who were, and are now, writing for children: Joy Harjo, Jeanette Armstrong, Bernelda Wheeler, Simon J. Ortiz, and Eric Gansworth. By 1992, Wheeler and Ortiz had written several books for children. Wheeler's Where Did You Get Your Moccasins is one of my all-time favorite books! It came out in 1986. 

In 2017, RTG had its 25th anniversary gathering. I attended, gave a presentation on children's books, and moderated a panel of four Native writers who have been writing for children: Marcie Rendon, Traci Sorell, Tim Tingle, and Art Coulson. At that gathering, the 40th anniversary edition of The People Shall Continue was launched. Written by Simon J. Ortiz and illustrated by Sharol Graves, it too is among my all-time favorite books. 

Celebrating and acknowledging key moments is important. I'll add 1992's gathering to AICL's list of Milestones. 


Saturday, June 04, 2022

Centering and Featuring Native Languages

In 2007 I saw a graphic that--at the time--I felt was terrific. I shared it everywhere. Created by the Tulsa City-County Library, it had the word 'read' in the center. Around it was the word 'read' in several different Native languages. 

Then last week, I watched a video of Dawn Quigley and Joaquin Munoz, speaking at the Indigenous Teacher Education Program at the University of Arizona, College of Education. Most of you know Dawn as a Native author, but she's also a professor. Click through and listen to the entire lecture. Professors Quigley and Munoz have terrific information to share! In his remarks, Munoz talks a bit about Cherie Dimaline's The Marrow Thieves. He's co-author on an excellent article you can download about her book: Ni keehtwawmi mooshahkinitounawn: Lifting Up Representations of Indigenous Education and Futures in The Marrow Thieves

In one portion of her remarks, Dawn talked about having a critical lens. That is what AICL is about: bringing a critical lens to the ways that Native peoples, cultures, languages, stories and songs are represented. 

Dawn closed her presentation by sharing the 'read' graphic and saying that "the English word 'read' should not be in the middle." Just before that, she said it is an amazing graphic. It is! I love seeing Native languages. I am guessing that she--like me and so many others--think Native languages should be more visible. And, she's right to say that the English word should not be in the middle! If we want to center our languages, we have to bring that critical lens to the 'read' graphic. 

So--here's my decentering of that graphic. I put the Tewa word for 'read' in the center (Tewa is the language we speak at Nambé). [Update on June 17th: Sue Anderson from the Tulsa City-County Library wrote to say "We are happy to give permission for others to use this image, provided they credit the Tulsa City-County Library and leave our tagline on the graphic."]

Earlier this year when signing bookplates for An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States, for Young People I wrote our word and my Tewa name on the top half of the bookplate, and on the bottom half, I wrote 'read' and signed 'Debbie Reese.' (If you happen to have one of those, could you please take a photo of it and send it to me? I didn't take a photo of the bookplates before sending them on to Minnesota for their Indian Education conference.)

Adding on June 6th, a photo of the bookplate! 
Kú'daa, Odia Wood-Krueger, for the photo!

Related to how Native languages are treated in books, we wrote about that in An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States, for Young People. In our "A Note To Readers," we said:
For a long time, textbooks and other print media have put non-English words in italics. Setting words apart in that way signals that English is the normal way to speak and write and other languages are “different.” But many people now see this use of italics as a way of “othering” languages and the people who speak them. We are strong advocates for the shift away from italics. You will not see Native words in italics in this book.
When you read Dawn's books, you'll see that she does not italicize Ojibwe words her characters use, except when she's explaining a word to the reader. Look at this passage on page 3 of Jo Jo Makoons: The Used-to-Be Best Friend when Jo Jo is on her way to school:
Mama usually walks with me, but today my kokum was going to. Kokum is another way to say "grandma" in the Michif language. She moved in with us after my moushoom died last year. 
A page earlier, we learned from Jo Jo that moushoom is their word for grandpa. When you read Eric Gansworth's books, you'll see that he used italics--for German words--in If I Ever Get Out of Here. Here's a passage from page 13 where his main character, Lewis, is visiting George, a white boy that Lewis is becoming friends with. Lewis loves music and is looking at albums on the shelves at George's house (p. 14):
"You like the Beatles?" I said. "We had pretty much all of their albums, but when my brother moved out, he took most of the later ones with him."

"We have them all," George said. "My dad's a huge Beatles fan. When we lived in Germany, he took me down to the Reeperbahn in Hamburg, because that's where they got their start. My Mutti about busted a blood vessel." 


"Sorry, German, it's like 'mom.'"

And when you read Brian Young's Healer of the Water Monster, you'll see he uses Navajo words for numerals in the chapter titles: 

These are definitely signifiers of change in children's book publishing! In my lectures and workshops, I encourage teachers to modify texts they use with students in their classrooms. I encourage them to give students reasons for the modifications and I also recommend they make modifications in front of students so that students can learn that books are not sacred. Words in them can be crossed out, and new ones inserted or added somehow to visually signify a shift. With my modification of the 'read' graphic, I'm decentering English. Said another way, I'm centering or featuring Tewa. 

I'm going to write to the staff at Tulsa City-County Library to let them know of my modification and ask if they might let us all use their original graphic, overlaying 'read' with a Native language -- either our own or one spoken by the people a library's homelands are located on. You can also make your own large poster and ask Native people in your service area how they say 'read' in their language. 

Monday, May 30, 2022

Questions about Liam McDonald (author of middle grade book, TRUE HISTORY: INDIGENOUS AMERICA)

On Friday, May 27, 2022 at 11:08 AM Native America Calling shared the following announcement about Liam McDonald, who was scheduled to be their guest that day:
We acknowledge we didn't adequately research the controversy over Liam McDonald's (OPLIAM) tribal affiliation claims before framing our Friday (May 27) show as a celebration of his music. 

We regret not grasping the controversy sooner.

Once we learned of it, we hoped to reframe the discussion and have him answer criticisms about those claims.

We feel that discussion is important and informational for everyone.

Unfortunately, McDonald decided against participating in that forum, so we're forced to change directions in the immediate future.

We hope to schedule another day so McDonald and his critics can air out what appear to be very legitimate questions about his purported Mohawk identity, and the importance of referring to identity in the most accurate and authentic way possible. 

I listen to the show--and recommend it--as a way people can learn more about Native peoples. Many topics there can help editors be more adept at editing Native content in books. 

Additional information was shared in Native social media. I learned that McDonald has a middle grade book coming out on August 30 from Penguin Random House's "Workshop" imprint. That book is titled True History: Indigenous America. 

I have not seen the book yet. Like the people at Native America Calling, I think McDonald has to address these criticisms. To me, it does not matter how well the book may be written. An author's integrity is fundamental to providing young people with books with Native content. 

Here's a screen capture of Native America Calling's announcement:



Monday, May 23, 2022

Highly Recommended: IT'S A MITIG by Bridget George

It's A Mitig!
Written and illustrated by Bridget George (Kettle & Stony Point First Nation)
Published by Douglas and McIntyre
Published in 2020
Reviewed by Debbie Reese
Review Status: Highly Recommended


This morning, I came across It's A Mitig! Written and illustrated by Bridget George, it is absolutely terrific! On the cover, you see a hand that is holding a magnifying glass. Turn the page, and you see that the story starts with morning time:
Giizis is rising, the day is brand new. Let's learn some words nature's gathered for you.
Right away, we are told what to expect. We'll learn some words---in Ojibwe, and we'll do it using rhyming words (new/you). Sometimes, the rhyming words are in English and Ojibwe, like on this page (log/gaag):

I love every page! The text on the final page of the story is:
Dibiki-giizis is glowing and bright. You've learned many new words, now it's time for goodnight. 
I'd be using this if I was teaching in an early childhood classroom, or in a language course, or with a child in my family sitting next to me. The final pages include a pronunciation guide, and one that functions as a picture book dictionary:

As I look at that page with all the items and their Ojibwe words, I think about how I might extend that with a different language. If I used Tewa (the language we speak at Nambé), I might say something like "The Ojibwes say giizis. We say than."

There are interviews with Bridget George in several places. In them she talks about how she was setting up a nursery for her baby and that it was hard to find what she wanted: books with Ojibwe words and characters. Her search is familiar. Many Native writers create the book they wanted, either as a child or an adult, because they weren't finding what they wanted. 

On some pages, George includes people. Here's an adult and child, sitting by the ziibi, reading:

I'm sharing that particular page because of the way George depicts them. These are clearly people of the present day. Regular readers of AICL know that I am especially keen on books that depict us as people of today! 

It is all here: Native author, Native characters, set in the present day, includes Native language... it is so very good! I'm delighted to see it. I highly recommend you get it. And keep an eye out for Bridget George's books! I see she's doing Too Much with Laurie Goodluck. It'll be published by Simon & Schuster in 2024. 


Thursday, May 19, 2022

Native Writers Sign Letter Submitted for US House Committee Hearing "Students, Parents & Others Testify on Curriculum Censorship"

An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States for Young People is among the hundreds of books that have been challenged and banned in schools in the United States. Today (March 19th, 2022), a letter was submitted to the US Congress. I and several Native writers, including Andrea L. Rogers, Traci Sorell, Brian Young, Kevin Maillard, Tim Tingle, Dawn Quigley, Denise K. Lajimodiere, Kim Rogers, and Cynthia Leitich Smith, signed the letter. 

Signed by 1,300 children's and young adult authors, the letter was drafted by Christina Soontornvat. In his opening remarks of the US House Committee hearing on "Students, Parents & Others Testify on Curriculum Censorship," Representative Jamie Raskin read the entire letter. Children's and young adult books expand what is available in curriculum materials and textbooks. Censoring them is a harm to all children. 

I offer a special kú'daa (thank you) to Arigon Starr, for including her tribal nation--Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma--in her signature (I highlighted it and did a screen capture): 

Who we are, as citizens of tribal nations, matters and the books we create for young people matter. They provide our children with mirrors of our experiences as Native people, and they provide non-Native children with windows that accurately bring Native life to them in ways that help them understand the entirety of who we are. 

Here is a copy of the letter:

May 17, 2022

We, the undersigned, authors and illustrators of books for children and teens, condemn the efforts by organized groups to purge books from our nation’s schools. Our concern is not for the books themselves, but for the children, families, and communities who are caught in the crosshairs of these campaigns.

This current wave of book suppression follows hard-won gains made by authors whose voices have long been underrepresented in publishing. Just ten years ago, less than seven percent of children’s books featured characters who were Black, Indigenous, or people of color (source: Cooperative Children’s Book Center). Representation is finally increasing thanks to the work of groups like We Need Diverse Books. The current banning efforts are part of a strong and purposeful backlash against books written by BIPOC authors. Books with characters who are LGBTQIA+ have been vehemently targeted and frequently misrepresented.

When books are removed or flagged as inappropriate, it sends the message that the people in them are somehow inappropriate. It is a dehumanizing form of erasure. Every reader deserves to see themselves and their families positively represented in the books in their schools. These books are important for all children. Reading stories that reflect the diversity of our world builds empathy and respect for everyone’s humanity. At a time when our country is experiencing an alarming rise in hate crimes, we should be searching for ways to increase empathy and compassion at every turn.

A particularly insidious feature of the current attacks is the flood of accusations that anyone who seeks to give readers access to diverse books is a “groomer,” “radical,” or “pedophile.” These charges are abhorrent and without merit, and they have been leveled against not only authors, but against teachers and librarians. We strongly condemn this slander against our colleagues and our nation’s educators.

A book may not be for every student, but—as we know from the many letters we receive from young readers—a single book can matter deeply to an individual student. Nearly all campuses have an existing system to handle a parent’s concern with their own child’s reading material. Pro-censorship groups seek to overwhelm these systems by pressuring schools to pull entire lists of books from shelves “for review.” Some extremists have intimidated authors, educators, and school board members online and even threatened them with violence. This has created an atmosphere of fear that has led to “soft censorship” in many districts. Books are quietly removed or never purchased at all. Authors are never invited to speak, for fear of drawing the wrath of
these groups.

Libraries are bastions of the First Amendment. They provide equal access to a wealth of knowledge and ideas for all public school students. When individuals and organizations seek to advance their own political agendas or personal beliefs by censoring books, they infringe upon students’ constitutional rights.

We call upon Congress, statehouses, and school boards to reject the political manipulation of our schools, to uphold the values of freedom and equality promised in the Constitution, and to protect the rights of all young people to access the books they need and deserve.


Judy Blume
Lois Lowry
Christina Soontornvat
Ellen Oh
Phil Bildner
Alex London
Dhonielle Clayton
Gordon Korman
Karina Yan Glaser
James Ponti
Minh Lê
Linda Sue Park
Nic Stone
Hena Khan
Katherine Paterson
Sarah Mlynowski
Meg Medina
Gregory Maguire
Stuart Gibbs
Julie Buxbaum
KA Holt
Juana Martinez-Neal
Nikki Grimes
Max Brallier
Samira Ahmed
Jim Averbeck
Louise Hawes
Rose Brock
Mary Brigid Barrett
Kyle Lukoff
Erika T. Wurth
Kate Hart
Andrea L. Rogers
Traci Sorell
Brian Young

Erin Entrada Kelly
Kathi Appelt
LeUyen Pham
Nisha Sharma
Debbie Reese
Kevin Maillard
Rick Riordan
Jacqueline Woodson
Cynthia Leitich Smith
Mo Willems
Jason Reynolds
Jeff Kinney
John Green
Raina Telgemeier
Tiffany D. Jackson
Mayra Cuevas
Rebecca Stead
Molly Idle
Bill Konigsberg
Joy McCullough
Liz Garton Scanlon
Elizabeth Eulberg
Adele Griffin
Laurel Snyder
Susan Campbell Bartoletti
Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Matt de la Peña
Cynthia Levinson
Bethany Hegedus
Elana K. Arnold
Audrey Vernick
Jason June
Tim Tingle
Jo Whittemore
ilene Wong Gregorio

Dawn Quigley
Supriya Kelkar
Jen Calonita
Jasmine Warga
Ronald L Smith
Victoria Aveyard
Rajani LaRocca
Jennifer Ziegler
Nidhi Chanani
Kami Garcia
Jeff Zentner
Gale Galligan
Angie Thomas
Dave Pilkey
Kate DiCamillo
Kwame Alexander
Jerry Craft
Dan Santat
Hope Larson
Varian Johnson
Romina Garber
Marianna Baer
Padma Venkatraman
Julie Murphy
Denise K. Lajimodiere
Laurie Devore
Soman Chainani
Jamie Lee Curtis
Mac Barnett
Megan Frazer Blakemore
Malinda Lo
Alex Segura

Kelly Yang
Naomi Milliner
Tracey Baptiste
Jon Scieszka
Veronica Roth
Shing Yin Khor
Supriya Kelkar
Shaenon K. Garrity
Alex Gino
Malayna Evans
Marie Lu
Laurel Goodluck
Randy Ribay
Courtney Summers
Jennifer Bertman
Libba Bray
Maulik Pancholy
Lin Oliver
Sarah Albee
Anne Wynter
Jessica Patrick
Kayla Cagan
Sara Ryan
Amy Spalding
Jordan Sonnenblick
Alexandria Giardino
Cory Putman Oakes
K-Fai Steele
Amy Novesky
Sayantani DasGupta
Erin Soderberg Downing
Donna Barba Higuera
David Bowles
Sarah Darer Littman
Nate Powell
Heidi E.Y. Stemple
Thyra Heder
Trung Le Nguyen
Mike Curato
Angeline Boulley
Barbara McClintock
Hannah Barnaby
Jeanne Birdsall
Steve Light
Maggie Rudy
Brian Floca
Malinda Lo
Jarrett J. Krosoczka
Sherri L. Smith

Nicole Maggi
Gideon Sterer
Ginger Johnson
Kara Thomas
Debbi Michiko Florence
Maryrose Wood
Kristin Cashore
Carolyn Mackler
Lauren Castillo
Margo Rabb
Beth McMullen
Mary Winn Heider
Natalie Standiford
John Rocco
Judy Blundell/Jude Watson
Brian Selznick
Laura Ruby
Jessica Lee Anderson
Susan Kralovansky
Amitha Jagannath Knight
Jenn Reese
Mariah Fredericks
Oge Mora
Farrah Rochon
Jason Chin
Lisa Fipps
Greg van Eekhout
Catherine Linka
Lisa McMann
David Hyde Costello
Kristin Cast
Janae Marks
Kip Wilson
Meredith Davis
Bethanie Murguia
Aisha Saeed
Cecil Castellucci
Fran Manushkin
Raphael Simon (aka
Pseudonymous Bosch)
Carrie Jones
Pat Miller
Katie Bayerl
Misa Saburi
Matt McMann
Maurene Goo
Brendan Reichs
Kaitlin Ward
Andrew Farago

Chris Grabenstein
Edward Underhill
Tracy López
William Alexander
P. C. Cast
Preeti Chhibber
Gayle Forman
Priyanka Taslim
Lyn Miller-Lachmann
Kate Messner
Robin Stevenson
Stephanie S. Tolan
Margarita Engle
Mike Jung
Casey W. Robinson
Deva Fagan
Adam Gidwitz
Jenna Miller
ER Frank
Natasha Donovan
Heather Murphy Capps
Isi Hendrix
Evan Turk
Jacquetta Nammar Feldman
Megan Reyes
Kim Rogers
Traci Chee
John August
Aron Nels Steinke
Sylvia Liu
Lauren Myracle
MaryBeth Timothy
Emily Skrutskie
Brandy Colbert
Arigon Starr (Kickapoo Tribe of
Melissa Stewart
Laura Shovan
Heidi R Kling
Laura Parnum
Susie Ghahremani
Alyson Gerber
Ruth Chan
Tui T. Sutherland
Jimmy Gownley
Andrea Wang
Kiersten White
Tara Dairman
Jen Ferguson

Fran Wilde
Dahlia Adler
Marc Tyler Nobleman
Steve Orlando
Melissa Walker
Mark Oshiro
Joe Cepeda
Trisha Moquino
Lamar Giles
Robert Liu-Trujillo
Mary McCoy
Amanda Foody
Alex R Kahler
Laekan Zea Kemp
Mike Maihack
Samantha Berger
Claribel A. Ortega
Terry Catasús Jennings
Tirzah Price
Lois Sepahban
Maria Gianferrari
Alexis Larkin
Olivia Chadha
Kalena Miller
Leslie Stall Widener
Z Brewer
Shane Pangburn
Pat Zietlow Miller
Violet Lumani
Terry Widener
Rosiee Thor
Pamela Ehrenberg
Sara Ackerman
Lev Rosen
Margaret Stohl
Alysa Wishingrad
Gia Gordon
Liselle Sambury
Tom Angleberger
Eliza Kinkz
M.T. Anderson
e.E. Charlton-Trujillo
Jessica Lewis
Victor Pineiro
Rebecca Balcárcel
Judd Winick
A.S. King
Anne Broyles
Lisa Robinson

Miranda Paul
Baptiste Paul
Kristy Boyce
Payal Doshi
Holly Black
Paul O. Zelinsky
Joseph Bruchac
Caroline Gertler
Alexandra Alessandri
Staci L. Drouillard
Carter Higgins
Kiku Hughes
Lisa Stringfellow
Elaine Vickers
Amy Noelle Parks
Andrea M. Page
Melissa Dassori
Wendy Mass
Sarah Hovorka
Lisa Varchol Perron
Esme Symes-Smith
Precious McKenzie
Greg Neri
Haley Neil
Marie Rutkoski
Ibi Zoboi
Amy Reed
HM Bouwman
Renee Ahdieh
Colleen Paeff
Sarah Kapit
Karuna Riazi
Anne Ursu
Lillie Lainoff
Jake Burt
Tina Connolly
Susan Cooper
Raakhee Mirchandani
Conrad Wesselhoeft
Samantha M Clark
Trisha Speed Shaskan
Amy Tintera
Mónica Mancillas
NoNieqa Ramos
Stephen Shaskan
Nicole D. Collier
Amy Ignatow
Tara Platt
Nina Hamza

Shawn Peters
Emily X.R. Pan
Jessixa Bagley
Lea Foushee
Deborah Heiligman
Betsy Bird
Anne Nesbet
Leslie Connor
Sue Macy
Veera Hiranandani
Miranda Sun
Cece Bell
Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic
Susan Kuklin
Jennifer Wilson
Martha Brockenbrough
Kim Turrisi
S.K. Ali
Patricia Morris Buckley
Elizabeth Blake
Lori R Snyder
Kirsten W. Larson
Jaime Formato
Saira Mir
Thomas Lennon
Judy I. Lin
April Jones Prince
Susan Azim Boyer
Jenny Han
Joana Pastro
Lindsay H. Metcalf
Gloria Amescua
Tamika Burgess
Lindsey Lane
M.O. Yuksel
Ingrid Law
Swati Avasthi
Will Taylor
Elisa Stone Leahy
Darshana Khiani
Abi Cushman
Andrea Menotti
Rochelle Hassan
Catherine Arguelles
Naz Kutub
Kara LaReau
Sarah Park Dahlen
Carol Kim
Nadia Salomon
Amanda Rawson Hill
Justine Pucella Winans
Lori Nichols
Laura Rueckert
Joanna Ho
Caroline Kusin Pritchard
Cylin Busby
Thi Bui
Sarah Street
Innosanto Nagara
Gigi Griffis
Ruta Sepetys
Adam Sass
Jen Wang
M.T. Khan
Katherine Applegate
Sheela Chari
Angela Burke Kunkel
Stephanie Burgis
Loree Griffin Burns
Jarrett Lerner
Jacob Sager Weinstein
Courtney Pippin-Mathur
Eliot Schrefer
Carole Lindstrom
Linda Urban
Jyoti Rajan Gopal
Jessica Young
Claire Bobrow
Andrew Maraniss
Steven Weinberg
Susan Eaddy
Trang Thanh Tran
Ann Braden
Jessica Vitalis
Lesléa Newman
Mika Song
Brendan Kiely
Brian D. Kennedy
Mónica Brown
Sean Petrie
Jo Knowles
Adib Khorram
Robert Broder
Karen Strong
Steve Sheinkin
Kathy Halsey
Breanna J. McDaniel
Kelly Starling Lyons

Sheri Dillard
Varsha Bajaj
Zoraida Córdova
Ryan T Higgins
Tameka Fryer Brown
Matt Tavares
Sarah Ahiers
Jamar Nicholas
Joanne Rossmassler Fritz
Meg Cannistra
Andrea Beatriz Arango
Peggy Thomas
Saraciea J. Fennell
Wendell Minor
Don Tate
Alicia D. Williams
E. Lockhart
Jane Yolen
Christine Heppermann
Anita Kharbanda
Linda Zajac
Brittany J. Thurman
Eric Smith
Charles Beyl
Charnaie Gordon
Renée Watson
Mari Mancusi
Molly B. Burnham
Alan Gratz
Kekla Magoon
Emma Carlson Berne
Gayatri Sethi
Debra Shumaker
Cynthia Platt
Vivian Vande Velde
Lisa Connors
Kate Klise
Reese Eschmann
Elizabeth Falk
Siman Nuurali
Valerie Bolling
Beth Ferry
James Riley
Nancy Ohlin
Jan Carr
Isabella Kung
Andrew Eliopulos
Elizabeth Acevedo
Grace Lin

Ellen Leventhal
Sheba Karim
David Small
Chris Tebbetts
Joyce Wan
Bree Paulsen
Corlette Douglas
Laurie Morrison
Sarah Warren
Abby Cooper
Daphne Kalmar
Sara Zarr
Jeanette Bradley
Javier Gimenez Ratti
Erin Petti
Stephanie Watson
Shadra Strickland
David Arnold
April Daniels
Leda Schubert
Gail Carson Levine
Kass Morgan
Eric Bell
Adam Rex
Julie Falatko
Sandra Nickel
Alliah L. Agostini
Alexandra Villasante
Olivia Abtahi
Rilla Alexander
Jennifer Gennari
Rachael Allen
Brad McLelland
Laura Gehl
Lisa J La Banca Rogers
Chantel Acevedo
Christina Díaz Gonzalez
Jenn Bishop
Laurie Halse Anderson
Crystal Allen
Dara Sharif
Anica Mrose Rissi
Marla Frazee
Matthew J. Kirby
Renee Kurilla
Becky Albertalli
John Claude Bemis
Brenda Seabrooke
Barney Saltzberg

Shanna Miles
Cristina Oxtra
Zoey Abbott
Heather Kamins
Ann Jacobus
Maria Scrivan
Loriel Ryon
Maria José Fitzgerald
Zack Loran Clark
S. Isabelle
Miriam Glassman
Gretchen McNeil
Matt Phelan
Kim Johnson
Jarrett Pumphrey
Kao Kalia Yang
Alechia Dow
Shannon Gibney
Margaret Peterson Haddix
Neal Shusterman
Ismée Williams, MD
Angela Quezada Padron
James Burks
Tanya Lee Stone
Sarah Klise
Laura Sibson
Lynne Kelly
Tamara Ireland Stone
Amber McBride
Ally Malinenko
Tracy Subisak
Deborah Underwood
Robin Yardi
Tashia Hart
Micah Player
Janet Sumner Johnson
Laurie Keller
Kalynn Bayron
Anne Greenwood Brown
Elisa Chavarri
Linsey Miller
Virginia Euwer Wolff
Cathy Ann Johnson-Conforto
Alli Brydon
Gene Barretta
Meg Fleming
Amy Lukavics
Julissa Mora
Kari Lavelle

Jacqueline Woodson
Mia García
Manju B. Howard
J.F. Fox
Tracy Barrett
Leigh Bardugo
Adriana Hernández Bergstrom
Catherine Alene
Maria van Lieshout
Sarah Meade
Janee Trasler
Bridget Hodder
Jenny Whitehead
Sue Fliess
Erzsi Deak
Gilly Segal
Kristen Simmons
Alexandra Monir
Janet Fox
Kimberly Latrice Jones
Aminah Mae Safi
Laura H. Beith
Yamile Saied Mendez
Rocky Callen
Elisa Ludwig
Demetra Brodsky
Alison Pearce Stevens
Chrystal D. Giles
Michelle Nott
Amy Young
Michelle Coles
Kathryn Thurman
Josh Allen
E. Katherine Kottaras
Karen Cushman
Lauren Morrill
Marissa Meyer
Holly M McGhee
Laurie Wallmark
Amy Gilez
Kelly McWilliams
Katie McGarry
Abigail Marble
M.K. Farr
Elly Swartz
Margaret Owen
Mike Chen
Nancy Castaldo

Sheila McGraw
Laura Taylor Namey
Christy Mihaly
Tessa Gratton
Huy Voun Lee
Hayley Barrett
Melanie Ellsworth
Nikki Katz
Halli Gomez
Daria Peoples
Kirsten Miller
Kim Ventrella
Pam Munoz Ryan
Emmy Kastner
Jessica Verdi
Stephanie Greene
Kate Berube
John Coy
Rose Garcia Moriarty
Karen Yin
Vera Brosgol
Kim Holt
R.L. Toalson
Teresa Robeson
Sage Blackwood
Gennifer Choldenko
Mylisa Larsen
Priscilla Alpaugh
Amy Huntington
Aditi Khorana
Adrienne Maria Vrettos
David Goodner
Chris Barton
Rebecca Petruck
Rebecca G. Aguilar
TeMika Grooms
Tiffany Gholar
Lissette Norman
Amy Ewing
Kate Barsotti
Shannon Hale
Rachel Gozhansky
Julien Chung
Michelle Cusolito
Margaret Chiu Greanias
Kit Rosewater
Sarah Aronson
Allen R. Wells
Jodi McKay

Ellen Booraem
Christine Evans
Constance Lombardo
Suzanne Morgan Williams
Ann E.. Burg
Joan F. Smith
Anne AC Gaughen
Andrea J. Loney
Mary Bowman-Kruhm
Judith L. Roth
E. B. Goodale
Laurenne sala
Lisa Katzenberger
Sophie Cameron
Jessie Sima
Melanie Conklin
Diana Sudyka
Maxine Kaplan
Gina Rosati
Sarah Tomp
Cátia Chien
Karen Romano Young
Tonya Duncan Ellis
Ashley Hope Pérez
PJ McIlvaine
Tiffany Schmidt
Beth Revis
Marsha Hayles
Allan Wolf
Jewell Parker Rhodes
Fleur Bradley
Karen Jialu Bao
Venessa Vida Kelley
Cinda Williams Chima
Becky Scharnhorst
Jason Gots
Angie Isaacs
Hayley Rocco
Keely Parrack
Mackenzie Joy
Gareth Hinds
Lori Degman
Katie Slivensky
Lindsay Moore
Joanie Stone
Eric Fan
Gracey Zhang
Madelyn Rosenberg
Michael Leali

Charise Mericle Harper
Mary Crockett
Audrey Helen Weber
Pamela S. Turner
Peter Brown
Shirley Ng-Benitez
Elizabeth Shreeve
Hope Lim
Sally J. Pla
Marcie Wessels
Kimberly Gee
Cynthia Harmony
Henry Herz
Jennifer Wolfe/Bosworth
Cynthia Cotten
Alison Goldberg
Aamna Qureshi
Anna Kopp
Rita Williams-Garcia
Elisa A. Bonnin
Brooke Boynton-Hughes
Leslie Bulion
Farrah Penn
Heather Lang
Travis Jonker
Deborah Freedman
Holly Jahangiri
Stef Wade
Diane Magras
Sarah Jung
Caela Carter
Anne Ylvisaker
Nikki Barthelmess
Carson Ellis
Jen White
Dan Richards
Nicola Yoon
Jodi Meadows
Marcie Colleen
Mary Reaves Uhles
Susan Johnston Taylor
Laura Gao
Dori Hillestad Butler
Melanie Sumrow
Carol Joy Munro
Pam Fong
Julia DeVillers
Jolene Gutierrez
Carmen Rodrigues

Darin Shuler
Tanisia Tee Moore
Uma Krishnaswami
Chris Eboch
Arree Chung
Malia Maunakea
Laura Silverman
Richard Michelson
Ellen Hopkins
Robb Pearlman
Andrea Zimmerman
Faith Pray
Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
Jennifer E. Smith
J. Anderson Coats
Elise Gravel
Amanda Hosch
Ransom Riggs
Julia Kuo
Karen S. Chow
Dianne White
Corinna Luyken
Ty Chapman
Christine Taylor-Butler
Divya Srinivasan
A.J. Irving
David Wiesner
Lisa Moore Ramee
Gina Perry
Chuck Gonzales
Kelly DiPucchio
Jonathan Stutzman
bryan collier
Cheryl Keely
Kristin O’Donnell Tubb
Tamara Ellis Smith
Nancy Bo Flood
Dana J. Sullivan
Sharon Darrow
Amber Benson
Erika L. Jones
Chris Baron
Kelly Light
Dana Swift
Jamie Kiffel-Alcheh
Jennifer K Mann
Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Anna Meriano
Juliana Brandt

David Yoon
Corey Ann Haydu
Michelle Houts
Randi Pink
Jess Townes
Nicholas Solis
Kimberly Derting
Caroline Carlson
Ana Siqueira
Wendy Shang
Antwan Eady
Debbie Zapata
Tara Altebrando
Karen Rostoker-Gruber
Elizabeth Lim
Lisa Anchin
Alessandra Narváez Varela
Henry Neff
Megan Hoyt
Jia Liu
Cynthia Reeg
Cherie Colyer
Jessica Spotswood
Ben Clanton
Nina Crews
Aida Salazar
Laura Renauld
Lisa L. Owens
Skylaar Amann
Tracy Nishimura Bishop
Miriam Busch
Mae Respicio
Meera Sriram
Eric Velasqquez
A.M. Wild
Jacqueline Jules
Rachel M. Wilson
Marcy Campbell
Nancy Armo
Jennifer Fosberry
Jessica Pennington
Rosanne Parry
Nanci Turner Steveson
Toni Yuly
Lisa Thiesing
Joya Goffney
Shannon Hitchcock
Donna Gephart
Kendare Blake

Denise Lewis Patrick
Fiona Cook
Erica S. Perl
Sara Raasch
Scott Schumaker
Paige McKenzie
Julia Alvarez
Sana Rafi
Chris Garcia-Halenar
Diana López
Katie Mazeika
Jacqueline West
Helaine Becker
Blythe Russo
Fahmida Azim
Jody Feldman
Monica Wesolowska
Gordon C. James
Tracy Deonn
Mariana Llanos
Megan Whalen Turner
Mark Holtzen
Tatjana Mai-Wyss
Lily Williams
Barb Rosenstock
Janie Bynum
Cathy Camper
Selina Alko
Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow
Kari Allen
Molly Beth Griffin
Heather Fox
Rita Lorraine Hubbard
Barbara Dee
Anne Hunter
Lola M. Schaefer
Katie Davis
Yuyi Morales
Kristen Schroeder
Carolyn Crimi
Karen Schneemann
Ena Jones
Tara Lazar
Alyson Greene
Saundra Mitchell
Laura Murray
Stan Yan
Freeman Ng
Carmen Oliver

Jess Redman
Nicole Chen
Tahereh Mafi
Dow Phumiruk
Jessica Lanan
Jessica Petersen
L. E. Carmichael
Laura Purdie Salas
Lindsay Currie
Ann Bonwill
Carrie Finison
Mary Lou Peacock
Viviane Elbee
Anna Sortino
Ellen Hagan
Sabina Hahn
Carolyn Marsden
Joanna Cooke
M. K. England
Shannon Messenger
Lisbeth Checo
Curtis Manley
Elizabeth Brown
Carrie Firestone
Victoria Ying
Lucy Morris
Jon-Erik Lappano
Melissa Iwai
Kurtis Scaletta
Sonya Sones
Tricia Elam Walker
Marissa Moss
Korey Watari
Kaija Langley
Sarah Kurpiel
Alyssa Colman
Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
Patricia Wiles
Charles R. Smith Jr.
Mike Wu
Eric Elfman
Shelley Pearsall
Katey Howes
Jacci Turner
Victoria M. Sanchez
Maya Prasad
Benson Shum
Lisze Bechtold
Zara González Hoang

Jess Brallier
Denis Markell
Zetta Elliott
Dinah Johnson
Lenore Appelhans
Pete Hautman
Erika R. Medina
Marti Dumas
Kaz Windness
Meredith Steiner
Laura Freeman
Guadalupe García McCall
Aram Kim
Shelly Anand
Fiona Halliday
Lenny Wen
Margery Cuyler
Rachael Lippincott
Betty C Tang
Anne O’Brien Carelli
Cindy L. Rodriguez
Susan Kusel
Tricia Springstubb
Julie Hampton
Cheryl Willis Hudson
Patricia Toht
Lisa Fields
Gene Luen Yang
Pat Cummings
Anitra Rowe Schulte
Leslie Kimmelman
Tony Piedra
Kathryn Otoshi
Rahele Jomepour Bell
Megan Paasch
Karen Gray Ruelle
Gaby D’Alessandro
Annie Silvestro
Pat Mora
Jasminne Mendez
Megan Bannen
Lauren Abbey Greenberg
Jamie Sumner
Veronica Rossi
Becky Herzog
Peter Pearson
Reggie Brown
Jennie Palmer
Victoria J Coe

She Ganz-Schmitt
Wade Hudson
Lilliam Rivera
Kim Smejkal
Nina Victor Crittenden
Tim McCanna
Joan Broerman
Sarah Plotzker
Kati Gardner
Sarah Henning
Jaime Berry
Lisa Schmid
Susan Muaddi Darraj
Aya Khalil
Lauren Paige Conrad
Anne Key
Zeena M. Pliska
Maleeha Siddiqui
Heather Brockman Lee
Peter Arenstam
Nicole Lesperance
Salima Alikhan
Tammi Sauer
Shirin Shamsi
Norene Paulson
Addie Tsai
Melissa Sarno
Sara K Joiner
Jennifer J. Stewart
Elissa Haden Guest
Cindy Derby
Shawn Harris
Alison Hawkins
Amy Wachspress
Brizida Magro
Sarah Raughley
Sarah & Ian Hoffman
Morgan Matson
Kristen Balouch
Sheetal Sheth
Janice Chiang
Kristy Acevedo
Sara Pennypacker
Julie Hedlund
Lindsay Leslie
Melissa de la Cruz
Nancy Werlin
Bonny Becker
Aimee Lucido

Deborah Halverson
Icy Smith
Haydee Zayas-Ramos
Nazareth Hidalgo Lobo
Esmeralda Santiago
Angelica Shirley Carpenter
Patricia Newman
Paula Yoo
Christina Francine
kevan atteberry
Jean Reagan
Ellen Wittlinger
Laya Steinberg
Francisco Jiménez
Bruce Coville
Theo Baker
Sarah Dessen
Krystal Quiles
Nelly Buchet
Mike Grosso
David Levithan
Julian Winters
Liza Wiemer
Isabelle Adams
Diane Telgen
Ann Brashares
Matthew Gollub
Karen B. Winnick
Kendall Kulper
Jeannine Atkins
Anika Aldamuy Denise
Cecilia Bernard
Alison McGhee
Dianne K. Salerni
Deborah Lakritz
Laura Rivera
Patti Sherlock
Peter Lerangis
Lynn Fulton
Christy Webster
James McGowan
Jon Klassen
Jesse Klausmeier
Genevieve Godbout
Christopher Weyant
Stephen Bramucci
Alison Green Myers
Michal Babay
Chana Stiefel

Anna Shinoda
Matthew Forsythe
Nicole Kronzer
Marc Colagiovanni
Tae Keller
Anika Fajardo
Jennifer Swender
Martha Seif Simpson
Helen Wu
Jandy Nelson
Natalie C. Parker
Candy Wellins
Cory Silverberg
Anna Kang
Timothy Young
Candace Fleming
Darlene Beck Jacobson
Helen Frost
Maria E. Andreu
Kristen Tracy
Kimberly J Sabatini
Wayne Anthony Still
Andrew Smith
Dan Gutman
Megan McCafferty
Arnée Flores
Flora Beach Burlingame
Julie Segal Walters
LL McKinney
R. J. Palacio
Kim Baker
Jasper Sanchez
Jilanne Hoffmann
Marnie Galloway
Pascal Lemaître
David Neilsen
Lian Cho
Lillian Pluta
Honee Jang
Isabel Roxas
Paul Jacobs
Karina Nicole González
Sandy King Carpenter
Tracy Badua
Alexis O’Neill
Jackie Azúa Kramer
J.J. Austrian
Jarrett Dapier
Gita Varadarajan

Meeg Pincus
April Halprin Wayland
Stephen Chbosky
Crystal Maldonado
Carrie Ryan
J. Kasper Kramer
Kay Moore
Gary Nilsen
Sara Levine
Camille Andros
Emily Wibberley
Amina Luqman-Dawson
Stephanie Graegin
Jeffry W. Johnston
Mitali Perkins
Ronique Ellis
Rob Sayegh Jr.
Scott Westerfeld
Jenin Mohammed
Lish McBride
Ellen Mayer
Emily Neilson
Nik Henderson
Rachel Dukes
Robert Paul Jr.
Emily Lloyd-Jones
Rae Carson
Chad W. Beckerman
Denene Millner
Michaela Goade
Susan Kaplan Carlton
Sun Yung Shin
Patricia Hruby Powell
Tara Sim
Barbara CarrollRoberts
Mary Beth Miller
Bennett Madison
Colleen AF Venable
Dave Szalay
Aislinn Brophy
Kim Smith
Kah Yangni
Gabby Zapata
Shelley Couvillion
Junauda Petrus
Gina Bellisario
Katy Rose Pool
Monica Roe
Jamie Krakover

George Ella Lyon
Julie E. Frankel
David Macinnis Gill
Gordon Jack
Paul Fleischman
Bethany C Morrow
Mike Lawrence
Robin Herrera
Shiho Pate
Rori Shay
Alec Longstreth
Mark Siegel
Jef Kaminsky
Phil Falco
Caroline Arnold
Dave Roman
Matt Rockefeller
Patricia McCormick
Archaa Shrivastav
Emi Cohen
Melissa Crowton
Bryan B. Bliss
Alexandra Thompson
Alexis Castellanos
Neo Edmund
Robin Preiss Glasser
Sheryl Murray
Will Hobbs
Jody Casella
Brianna McCarthy
Ken Daley
Rebecca Barnhouse
Andre R. Frattino
Maia Kobabe
David Elliott
Laila Sabreen
Kathleen Ahrens
Landra Jennings
Abby Hanlon
Cozbi A Cabrera
Kianny N. Antigua
Olivia de Castro
Marcia Argueta Mickelson
Josh Funk
Liz Starin
DeAndra Hodge
Nneka Myers
Ted Enik
Ariel Bernstein

Rachel Cohn
Sili Recio
Boya Sun
Gabi Snyder
Pat Redding Scanlon
Naomi Danis
Bruce Hale
James Serafino
Holly Schindler
Rachelle Burk
Court Stevens
Andria Warmflash Rosenbaum
Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman
Lizz Brady
Kell Andrews
Tad Hills
Ari Tison
Sabrina Kleckner
Emma Bland Smith
Danielle Davis
Andie Powers
Mark Rogalski
Leila Sales
Karah Sutton
Darla Okada
Aldo Pourchet
Dian Curtis Regan
Lynn Brunelle
Qin Leng
Isabel Quintero
Jama Kim Rattigan
Keri Claiborne Boyle
Lorien Lawrence
Melanie Crowder
Danica Novgorodoff
Margie Longoria
Lia Brown
Roni Schotter
Leah Henderson
Jacquie Hann
Colter Jackson
Marissa Valdez
Deborah Sosin
Jessie Hartland
Sophie Escabasse
Jane Park
Sue Heavenrich
Raul the Third
Cheryl Blackford

Rhonda McCormack
Cheryl Walsh Bellville
Daphne Benedis-Grab
Sallie G. Randolph
Stacia Deutsch
Lee Wardlaw
Gary D. Schmidt
Savannah Allen
Sherry Shahan
Elizabeth Rose Stanton
Doreen Cronin
Dominique Ramsey
Eva Petersen
Michelle Cuevas
Cordelia Jensen
Megan E. Freeman
Rashmi Bismark
Anuradha D. Rajurkar
Melisa Fernández Nitsche
Dan-ah Kim
Kate Albus
Andrew Sharmat