Do You Know These Houston Kid Lit Authors?

At Brazos, we LOVE supporting authors. And it’s particular fun to promote Texas authors (especially but not limited to Houston authors!, first because they are awesome, and also because they often pop in even when they don’t have a new book out! Texas has a phenomenal and huge literary community, so there are far more amazing kidlit authors in the state than I can feature in one article. So I thought I’d introduce you to some (but certainly not all!) of my Houston favorites--in alpha order!-- and encourage you to discover them, buy their books, and spread the word.

The Magnificent Mya Tibbs: Mya in the Middle Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062839398
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Balzer + Bray - October 16th, 2018

Crystal Allen writes award-winning, funny, heartwarming early reader and middle grade fiction featuring African American characters. Her books blow off the shelves and her school visits are prized events all over the country. Start with her debut, HOW LAMAR’S BAD PRANK WON HIM A BUBBA-SIZED TROPHY (which won the coveted Sid Fleischman Award for humorous writing), and then read on from there. She’s going to be helping us kick off Spring Break Houston Reads week, where we’ll be featuring her early reader MYA TIBBS series.

The Home Builders Cover Image
By Varsha Bajaj, Simona Mulazzani (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399166853
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - February 12th, 2019

Varsha Bajaj’s HOW MANY KISSES DO YOU WANT TONIGHT is consistently one of our bestselling board books. Her ABBY SPENCER GOES TO BOLLYWOOD is also a hit in our middle grade section. And her THIS IS OUR BABY BORN TODAY sells and sells as a perfect new baby and shower gift! Varsha’s got more on the way, including a lovely picture book titled HOMEBUILDERS, which she’ll be reading at a special story time on 3/2 at our usual 10:30.

Word Burglar Cover Image
By Chris Cander, Katherine Tramonte (Illustrator)
Unavailable from Brazos Bookstore
ISBN: 9781936474967
Availability: OUT OF PRINT - Not Available for Order
Published: Bright Sky Press - October 1st, 2013

Chris Cander writes both children’s books and adult novels. Her adult novel WEIGHT OF A PIANO is out soon, getting many starred reviews and lots of acclaim and buzz, and we are hosting an event on 1/22 that you should definitely attend! And check out her picture book WORD BURGLAR next time you’re in the Treehouse!

Song for a Whale Cover Image
ISBN: 9781524770235
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Delacorte Press - February 5th, 2019

Lynne Kelly writes amazing middle grade novels. Her SONG FOR A WHALE is getting fabulous trade reviews and enormous buzz (Newbery, anyone?) and will be out next month! We are thrilled to be hosting her on school visits in HISD, and we’re crossing our fingers that she can join us in the coming months for Middle Grade Book Club. I’ll be doing an interview with Lynne for a future newsletter so you can learn more about her (she’s also a sign language interpreter and SONG’s main character and her grandmother are both Deaf). Pre-order SONG FOR A WHALE here.

In Another Time Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062459916
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: HarperTeen - August 28th, 2018

Caroline Leech is a friend of the store, our favorite Scottish ex-pat, and a full part of Houston’s arts community because not only is she an author of wonderful, historical-fiction YA novels, she’s also married to Perryn Leech, the managing director of the Houston Grand Opera! Caroline has launched two of her novels right here at Brazos, both of which are set in WII-era rural Scotland, and both of which are delightful, romantic reads. Here’s a link to her most recent, IN ANOTHER TIME, can be ordered right here.

Moxie: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250104267
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Square Fish - September 18th, 2018

YA novel, MOXIE--the story of a girl who, tired of the sexism in her high school, creates a protest zine and ends up starting a feminist revolution-- is consistently one of our store bestsellers! It’s a great read for ages 12/13 and up, a great read for adults, too. Jennifer is a prolific, award-winning writer, and also an English teacher at Bellaire HS. We adore her and can’t wait for her next novel, coming this fall! You can grab a copy of MOXIE here.

Love Sugar Magic: A Sprinkle of Spirits Cover Image
By Anna Meriano, Mirelle Ortega (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780062498496
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Walden Pond Press - February 5th, 2019

Anna Meriano’s LOVE SUGAR MAGIC middle grade series is a wonderful, magical delight. Think small town Texas bakery, a family of brujas, and a girl who’s still trying to figure out her place in the family--and her magic! It’s fun, funny, and heartwarming and Anna will be launching the second book right here at Brazos! Pre-order LOVE SUGAR MAGIC: A SPRINKLE OF SPIRITS and join us on 2/9 for the launch party!

Those are enough to get you started discovering Houston’s many, wonderful kidlit authors! (I’m one of them, too, so feel free to ask me next time you’re in the store!) And stay tuned for other articles in which we branch out to the rest of Texas!

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