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Summer is here: news, parties, and 50 years of Loving


The first half of 2017 has been both a whirlwind and a grind. In March, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to travel to Hong Kong for the annual Hong Kong International Young Readers Festival. I spent an amazing week exploring the city, visiting schools, and speaking to students about empathy, mental health, and the art of crafting suspense. On the flip side of all that fun, however, I also put in countless solitary hours studying and preparing for the national licensing exam for professional practice in psychology (which I passed, phew).

With so much going on, … read the rest

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Morris Award Finalist Interview: Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock, author of THE SMELL OF OTHER PEOPLE'S HOUSES

19370304Today’s my day to join in the Morris Award finalist interview tradition, which is one of my favorite things. If you missed yesterday’s interview with Becky Albertalli and Jeff Zentner, you can read it here.

So let’s get right to it: I was blown away by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock’s gorgeous debut, THE SMELL OF OTHER PEOPLE’S HOUSES, which felt so different from anything I’ve read in YA in a long time–and I loved that. It’s the intertwining stories of four different teenagers growing up in 1970 Fairbanks, Alaska. These teens are dealing with loss, poverty, racism, abuse, and abandonment, but … read the rest

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crossed country




I flew from Oakland, CA to Charleston, S.C. last week for YALLFEST, two days after the presidential election. Having never visited South Carolina, I’m not sure what I expected. Was I leaving my bubble or was I entering someone else’s? The answer was both yes and yes, but in a way, the unknown was just what I needed. Because I want to understand what I can’t possibly know and I also want desperately to hold on to my faith that most people–most of the time–are doing the best that they can.

The morning after I arrived, I … read the rest

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Rabbits, horror films, YALLFEST, and other fine things

img_9776October is my favorite month. In part, because it’s the month I was born, but I also love the changing seasons, the Autumn Wind, the rabbit shows. My family also participated in this year’s #31horrorfilmsin31days challenge, and it was somehow more fun than ever this time around. This was because we put more thought into what we wanted to watch ahead of time, rather than only relying on what was streaming on Netflix (although, we did that, too). We also got to the theater twice, including taking advantage of the chance to see Kubrick’s The Shining on the … read the rest

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