Meet Joy, Children's Specialist

Working at Brazos as children’s specialist is a dream come true for me. I am also fortunate enough be a published author of young adult novels, so this means that I spend my days writing, reading, and talking about books!

My mother put LITTLE WOMEN in my hands when I was about eight. I was so devastated at Beth’s death that it was years before I finished the novel! It was my first experience with the power of literature to move me so intensely. Later that year, I discovered a wonderful book by Edgar Eager called HALF MAGIC, and not long after that, Madeline L’Engle’s A WRINKLE IN TIME, both of which remain favorites.

As a reader, I’m a literary omnivore. Genre fiction, light fantasy, sci-fi, mystery, thriller, essayists, biography, non-fiction, books on Americana and pop culture, the classics and the not-so- classics—I gobble it all. My current obsession is novels that sit at the intersection of literary and commercial—books like Rebecca Stead’s Newbery Award winning WHEN YOU REACH ME; Laura Ruby’s BONE GAP; Nova Ren Suma’s THE WALLS AROUND US. I adore Anne Tyler, Kerry Greenwood’s Miss Fisher’s Mysteries novels, and the belly laughs I get from humorist David Sedaris, travel writer Bill Bryson, and essayist Sarah Vowell. I’m a huge fan and advocate of young adult novels, including the work of Libba Bray, Maggie Steifvater, AS King, Andrew Smith, Adele Griffin, Beth Kephart, and many, many others.

I build on all this not only as a bookseller and writer but also as a teacher of writing at Writespace Houston. Both inside and outside the store, I’m proud to be part of Houston’s amazing literary community.


Joy's book recommendations
Joy's kids book recommendations