School Library Journal Day of Dialog Cambridge 2019

School Library Journal Day of Dialog, October 4, 2019
Cambridge Public Library
449 Broadway, Cambridge, MA


Join School Library Journal for our second-annual Day of Dialog Cambridge, the most anticipated librarian-only gathering of the year! Attendance is absolutely free! 

Be informed, inspired, and entertained by the industry’s leading authors, illustrators, editors, and publishers. Spend the day discussing the latest trends, and get the inside scoop on the hottest books in the world of children's and young adult literature.

You’ll enjoy a full day of panels and speaker presentations by celebrated authors. And thanks to our many publisher sponsors, attendees will receive free advanced reading copies and an opportunity to have complimentary books signed by their authors. 

Network with colleagues from around the country in an intimate, library-centric setting; get a first look at exciting titles due out next season; and walk away with free books and stimulating ideas for your libraries and classrooms.


9:30 AM | Registration

9:55 AM | Welcome

Director, Cambridge Public Libraries
Kiera Parrott, Reviews Director, Library Journal and School Library Journal

10:00 AM | Opening Keynote: Erin Entrada Kelly, Lalani of the Distant Sea (HarperCollins/Greenwillow)

10:30 AM | Panel 1: Picture Books

Julia Denos and E.B. Goodale, Here and Now (HMH)
Kyle Lukoff, Call Me Max; Max and the Talent Show (Reycraft)
Vita Murrow, High-Five to the Hero (Quarto)
Cornelius Van Wright, The Little Red Crane (Starbright)
Moderated by Leslie Hynes, Early Childhood and Elementary School Librarian, Kingsley
Montessori School, Boston

11:20 AM | Book Buzz #1

American Psychological Association/Magination Press
Deborah Sloan
Owl Kids

12:00 PM | Lunch/Author Signings

1:00 PM | Afternoon Keynote

Deborah Heiligman, Torpedoed: The True Story of the World War II Sinking of “The Children’s Ship” (Macmillan)

1:30 PM | Panel 2: Nonfiction

Kim Chafee, Her Fearless Run: Kathrine Switzer's Historic Boston Marathon (Page Street)
Marge Pellegrino, Neon Words: 10 Brilliant Ways to Light Up Your Writing (Magination)
Melissa Stewart, Seashells: More Than a Home (Charlesbridge)
Carole Boston Weatherford, BOX: Henry Brown Mails Himself to Freedom (Candlewick)
Moderated by Margaret Bush, Professor Emerita, Simmons College, Boston

2:20 PM | Break/Signings

2:35 PM | Panel 3: Tweens & Teens

Craig Battle, Camp Average (Owl Kids)
Ryan LaSala, Reverie (Sourcebooks)
Maulik Pancholy, The Best at It (HarperCollins)
Karen Rayne, Trans+: Love, Sex, Romance, and Being You (Magination)
Christina Soontornvat, A Wish in the Dark (Candlewick)
Moderated by Ashleigh Williams, Middle Grade Editor, School Library Journal

3:15 PM | Book Buzz #2

Page Street
Starbright Books

4:05 PM | Closing Keynote

Nikki Grimes, Ordinary Hazards: A Memoir (Wordsong)


Keynote Speakers

Nikki Grimes

New York Times bestselling author Nikki Grimes is the recipient of the 2017 Children's Literature Legacy Award, the 2016 Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, and the 2006 NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children. Her distinguished works include the much-honored books Garvey's Choice, ALA Notable book What is Goodbye?, Coretta Scott King Award winner Bronx Masquerade, and Coretta Scott King Author Honor books Jazmin's Notebook, Talkin' About Bessie, Dark SonsWords with Wings, and The Road to Paris. Creator of the popular Meet Danitra Brown, Ms. Grimes lives in Corona, California.

Nefertiti Austin

Deborah Heiligman was born and raised in Allentown, PA, the only child of my parents’ marriage, but she had a sister and a brother from her mother’s first marriage. She became an aunt when I was five-years-old, so my five nieces were like my little sisters. Her father was a wonderful doctor who made house calls and didn’t make a lot of money. Her mother worked whenever she had the chance to.

Brenda Boyer

New York Times–bestselling author Erin Entrada Kelly was awarded the Newbery Medal for Hello, Universe. She grew up in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and now lives in Delaware. She is a professor of children’s literature in the graduate fiction and publishing programs at Rosemont College, where she earned her MFA. Her short fiction has been nominated for the Philippines Free Press Literary Award for Short Fiction and the Pushcart Prize. Erin Entrada Kelly’s debut novel, Blackbird Fly, was a Kirkus Best Book, a School Library Journal Best Book, an ALSC Notable Book, and an Asian/Pacific American Literature Honor Book. She is also the author of The Land of Forgotten Girls, winner of the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature; You Go First, a Spring 2018 Indie Next Pick; and Lalani of the Distant Sea. The author’s mother was the first in her family to immigrate to the United States from the Philippines, and she now lives in Cebu.




Craig Battle has worked as a journalist, coach, and camp counselor. He is the former editor of OWL magazine, the former owner of a pretty solid jump shot, and the author of six books for middle-grade readers, including the Camp Average series. Now an editor of stories big and small at, Craig lives in Toronto with his wife and son.

Cathi Furman

Kim Chaffee, author of Her Fearless Run: Kathrine Switzer’s Historic Boston Marathon, is a former second-grade teacher now focusing on writing and being a mom. She holds a BA in history and a master’s in education. In her spare time, she blogs about picture books for parents, teachers, and writers. She lives with her family
in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

Cathi Furman

Julia Denos loves words and pictures, making a mess, and cleaning up. She has worked in a variety of creative industries as an author, illustrator, and designer. Watercolor is her favorite medium because it's the wildest. She lives and works in a coastal town, outside of Boston. If she isn't in the studio, she's probably sitting in a salt marsh. And/or humming at snails. (They come out of their shells when you hum, you know.)

Cathi Furman

E.B. Goodale is an illustrator, printmaker and designer who loves fluffy cats and the color yellow.  After ten plus years of running presses in letter-press shops, she now makes art for picture books and stationery full time. Mono printing, letterpress and etching are her favorite forms of printmaking and combining those textures with watercolor and ink is her preferred way of creating illustrations. Her debut picture book, Windows by Julia Denos, received an Ezra Jack Keats honor for illustration and was an ALSC Notable book for 2018. Her book, A Most Unusual Day, by Sydra Mallery was a Junior Library Guild Selection. She lives with her family in historic Salem, Massachusetts where she works in a tiny, sunny room in a yellow house.

Cathi Furman

Ryan La Sala grew up in Connecticut, but only physically. Mentally, he spent most of his
childhood in the worlds of Sailor Moon and Xena: Warrior Princess, which perhaps explains all the twirling. He studied Anthropology and Neuroscience at Northeastern University before becoming a project manager specialized in digital tools. He technically lives in New York City, but has actually transcended material reality and only takes up a human shell for special
occasions, like brunch, and to watch anime (which is banned on the astral plane). Reverie is
Ryan’s debut novel. You can visit him at

Cathi Furman

Kyle Lukoff has worked at the intersection of books and people for over half his life, first as a bookseller, then as a school librarian, and now as a writer. He is transgender, like Max, and lives in a small Brooklyn
apartment with six overflowing bookshelves.

Cathi Furman

Vita Murrow is an educator, an artist, a writer and a mum. Vita has a quirky sense of humour and an eye for the weird. When she was in 8th grade she was rejected from a special writers’ retreat for kids. But that didn’t stop her from pursuing her passion. Since then Vita has been a teacher, a producer, a film maker, a program director and even a puppeteer. She’s also had jobs in an office which were pretty fun. She currently works as a children’s author reinventing old stories for a new generation and crafting wordless pictures books together with her husband Ethan Murrow. Their recent book “The Whale” was nominated for a CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medal. Vita loves working with other artists and writers and is always looking to share a chocolate chip cookie with someone.

Maulik Pancholy is an award-winning actor whose work includes playing Jonathan on the critically-acclaimed television series 30 Rock, Sanjay on the hit series Weeds, and Neal on the comedy series Whitney. He is the voice of Baljeet on the Emmy Award–winning Phineas and Ferb and of Sanjay on Sanjay and Craig. In December, he returns to Broadway in Grand Horizons at the Helen Hayes Theatre. He is the recipient of an Asian American Arts Alliance Award and the Human Rights Campaign’s Visibility Award, and he served on President Barack Obama's Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. While at the White House, he helped launch an anti-bullying campaign called Act to Change, which he continues to lead today. Maulik lives with his husband in Brooklyn, NY. The Best at It is his debut novel.

Marge Pellegrino is a teaching artist who facilitates writing and expressive arts workshops in schools, libraries, and community settings for challenged and mainstream audiences. Her books include Neon Words: 10 Brilliant Ways to Light Up Your WritingToo NiceMy Grandma's the Mayor, and the award winning Journey of Dreams. She co-wrote The Sculpture Speaks: A Refugee's Story of Survival, which supports the work of the Owl & Panther program for refugee families impacted by torture and traumatic dislocation. She grew up in New York and lives with her family in Tucson, AZ. Visit and on Facebook.

Karen Rayne, PhD, is the Executive Director of UN|HUSHED. She writes comprehensive sexuality education curricula, books for children, teenagers, and parents, and trains professionals internationally. She is the co author of TRANS+: Love, Sex, Romance, and Being You and author of GIRL: Love, Sex, Romance, and Being You. She cam be found on Facebook and Instagram @karenrayne. Visit the Dr. Karen Rayne and UN|HUSHED websites to learn more.

Christina Soontornvat grew up in a small Texas town where she spent many childhood days behind the counter of her parents' Thai restaurant with her nose in a book. She is the author of many books for
young readers, including The Blunders, illustrated by Colin Jack. She now lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and two children.

Melissa Stewart has written more than 180 science books for young readers. While gathering information for her books, Melissa has hiked in tropical rain forests, gone on safari in Africa, and swum with sea lions in the Galapagos Islands. She can't imagine any better job! Visit Melissa's website at or track her at

Carole Boston Weatherford, a New York Times best-selling author and poet, was selected as the
Children’s Book Guild 2019 Nonfiction Award Winner. Her numerous books for children include the Coretta Scott King Author Award Honor Book Becoming Billie Holiday, illustrated by Floyd Cooper; the Caldecott Honor Books Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom, illustrated by Kadir
Nelson, and Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer, Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement, illustrated by Ekua
Holmes; and the critically acclaimed Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library, illustrated by Eric Velasquez. Carole Boston Weatherford lives in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Cornelius Van Wright is an award-winning illustrator. He works with his wife, Ying-Hwa Hu (also an illustrator), on many assignments. Their work has been exhibited at the Bologna Book Fair and the Society of Illustrators’ “The Original Art” show. Cornelius lives in New York City with his wife and their two children.




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