It’s the last few days of Ramadan here and May is shaping up to be busy with the end of school year upon us. Hopefully I’ll have some more announcements to share about May soon! 🙂
In the meantime, my children are home from school for spring break and I forgot what it was like to multi-task with children around. (Not-Easy!) Below is an epic-Rice Krispie spill that happened recently in our home, above is a cheerio spill from some years ago. I am not sure how we all stayed home for soooo many months together in the pandemic!
I guess when we are all home, I have to put my ‘messy blinders’ on and get work done! In the meantime, some booksy updates…
CALL ME ADNAN is a Junior Library Guild Gold Selection!
I’m thrilled to share CALL ME ADNAN is a Junior Library Guild Gold standard selection! I’ve always wanted my book to be chosen for that and so honored I get to be part of it! Many thanks to my critique partners, editor, agent, and Harper team for all their hard work on my book.
About Junior Library Guild:
95% of their hand-picked selections earn starred reviews, honors, and awards, so you can trust the books you receive are the best of the best.
Yay! Thank you for this honor Junior Library Guild!🪙💛🌟🏆🏅
I can’t wait for this book to meet readers and libraries on June 13th; you can order it here!
Books in Verse: These middle grade works speak to the heart through lyrical language
Gr 4-8–Life looks good for Aafiyah Qamar, with tennis, her friend Zaina, and her good looks leading the way. Except she struggles to control her tendency to borrow things without asking, sometimes not giving them back. When her father is arrested for a crime he didn’t commit, Aafiyah comes up with a plan to help her family, but it may involve giving in to her greatest weakness. Aafiyah makes for a sympathetic character whose voice shimmers, just like her fingers twitch to “borrow” things. – School Library Journal
Check out the other awesome books in this article by SLJ here !
Classroom Door Decoration for Ramadan and Reading Month!
Ms. Maha Almaweri from Salina Intermediate located in Dearborn Michigan decorated doors for Ramadan and for Reading month in March. This picture made my day!
I Presented at the Georgia Children’s Book Awards Conference!
I got to give one of the keynote speeches at the Georgia Children’s Book Awards Conference! It was great meeting these talented authors below. I also presented a workshop on verse. My book GOLDEN GIRL and UNSETTLED got chosen as a Georgia Children’s Book Awards 2023 and 2024 Finalist! I loved meeting these talented authors below!
Interview with Hazem Asif: Tips for Illustrators!
“In my opinion, consistency should be the key and foundation of success for every artist. Have faith in yourself and be your greatest supporter. Strive to develop a distinctive and dynamic style that is unique to you and helps push your creative boundaries. Let your consistency be the driving force behind your artistic journey.”– Hazem Asif
Read the full interview here!
April is Poetry Month – Listen to Podcasts Here!
On Matthew Winner’s Children’s Book Podcast, I am featured here!
There are some other authors whose verse novels I love like Chris Baron’s and Lisa Fipps and are featured here! The episodes are short and impactful which I love, great when you’re on the go!
Also, please check out Joyful Learning podcast here. It has interviews with Rajani La Rocca, K. A. Holt, and more! I can’t wait to get some tips from them. My interview goes live on Tuesday.
A Middle Grade Book I Loved:
This book by Jaime Berry was joyful as Jubilee’s name! I loved it. The pacing, the character Jubilee, her Nan (have a soft spot for her), Wynn, and Jubilee’s mom. Each character felt so real and the story flowed easily and got me out of a writing rut. I suggest aspiring middle grade writers check this out to get ideas on smooth writing and dialogue!
A Picture Book I Loved:
Marzieh Abbas’s story A DUPATTA IS shines! Abbas’s words are lyrical and invite the reader to keep reading because ‘a dupatta is so much more…’ The gentle refrain ‘because a dupatta is so much more…’ weaves the story together beautifully and I didn’t want it to end. Ani Chouhan’s pictures are dreamy and feel like home. Paired with Abbas’s words, the story is a treat. The last page ‘a dupatta is identity’ felt like a gentle hug and reading this story as a Pakistani-American, I felt seen and celebrated. Dupattas are such a strong part of our culture and this story captures it perfectly. I love how Abbas and Chouhan captured the different designs and fabric styles showcasing the diversity of a dupatta. I can’t wait for more books from this talented duo!
2 Nice Reviews – by Award-Winning Author Shirin Shamsi and Matal B!
Thank you so much for being here again and for ALL your support! Eid Mubarak to all those who celebrate!