SLJTeen Live!


Join us Thursday, August 4, 2022, for our 11th annual SLJTeen Live! virtual event!

Come hear about the latest and most exciting forthcoming titles for teens and tweens. From rom-coms and mysteries to graphic novels and classic coming-of-age stories, our daylong program of author panels, in-depth conversations, and keynote talks will keep you inspired and entertained. 

You’ll also have the opportunity to visit the virtual exhibit hall to meet with leading publishers, enjoy additional chats, and download digital galleys and other free resources.


EVENT HOURS: 9:00 AM ET - 5:00 PM ET | 6:00 AM PT - 2:00 PM PT


All live sessions will be on Zoom. Make sure to log in to your work or personal Zoom account before the day starts to avoid having to log in for each session. 

Note that the event environment and the sessions have attendance capacity limits. If on the day of the event you find that you are unable to access the environment or join a session, know that sessions will be available for on-demand viewing within 24 hours, and the entire event will be accessible for three months from the event date. 

Please make sure your computer and browser are up to date. Chrome tends to work best. The event platform does not support IE11 + Windows 7 or older versions. 

By registering for this event or webcast, you are agreeing to the School Library Journal Privacy Policy and Code of Conduct Policy and agreeing that School Library Journal may share your registration information with current and future sponsors of this event. 

If you have any questions, email us at



9:00 - 9:30 AM ET | Exhibit Hall Opens/Visit the Booths


9:00 - 9:30 AM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with AGE OF BRONZE creator, Eric Shanower. Shanower will be discussing his newest work, creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


9:05 - 9:20 AM ET | In-Booth Chat with Annick Press & ECW

Join Maya Ameyaw (When It All Syncs Up, May 2023) as she talks to author Louisa Onome (Twice As Perfect) about Black mental health, her upcoming debut. Bring your questions and be sure to request an ARC! (Annick Press & ECW)


9:10 - 9:30 AM ET | In-Booth Chat with Wattpad WEBTOON Book Group

Join Kimberly Vale, author of Crossbones, as she talks about the next book in the Kingdom of Bones series, Dark Tides (October 18, 2022). Bring your questions and be sure to request a digital ARC!


9:30 - 10:00 AM ET | Opening Keynote Conversation

Join Dr. Ibram X. Kendi and Nic Stone, as they discuss the upcoming release of How to Be a (Young) Antiracist. The #1 New York Times bestseller that sparked international dialogue is now a book for young adults and will serve as a guide for teens seeking a way forward in acknowledging, identifying, and dismantling racism and injustice.
Moderator: Sandra Farag, MLIS, Head of Youth Services at Kalamazoo Public Library (MI)


Two Sessions Running Concurrently


10:05 - 10:50 AM ET | History Repeats Itself

From racism to gun violence to pandemics, teens have been dealing with difficult topics for decades. Join a panel of fiction and nonfiction authors as they dig into tough topics young people deal with on a daily basis.


Brian Buckmire II, Come Home Safe (HarperCollins Focus)

Lynn Curlee, The Other Pandemic (Charlesbridge)

Candace Fleming, Murder Among Friends (Random House Children's Books)

Ashley Woodfolk, Opening My Eyes Underwater (Macmillan Children's)

Moderator: Ron Block, Branch Manager, Cuyahoga County Public Library System (OH)


10:05 - 10:50 AM ET | Let's Talk About Mental Health

These books cover the topics relevant to so many teens (and adults!) today. Listen and learn about these teens and their stories on mental health. 


Ted Anderson, Side Effects (AfterShock Comics)

Matthew Dawkins, Until We Break (Wattpad WEBTOON Book Group)

Lizzy Mason, Remind Me to Hate You Later (Bloomsbury)

Amber McBride, We Are All So Good at Smiling (Macmillan Children's)

Moderator: Emma Carbone, Senior YA Librarian, Central Youth Wing, Brooklyn Public Library (NY)

Two Sessions Running Concurrently


10:55 - 11:45 AM ET | Anticipated Sequels

The wait is over! Find out what happens next in these new installments in your favorite series.


S. K. Ali, Love from Mecca to Medina (Simon & Schuster)

Claire Andrews, Blood of Troy (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

J. Elle, Ashes of Gold (Simon & Schuster)

Elizabeth Lim, The Dragon's Promise (Random House Children's Books)

Xiran Jay Zhao, Heavenly Tyrant (Penguin Teen Canada)

Moderator: Crystal Chen, Teen Center Coordinator, Young Adult Services, New York Public Library


10:55 - 11:45 AM ET | Stories About the Alphabet Mafia
From your first love to identity to problems with your family, being a queer teen has its ups and downs in these genuine stories from dynamic authors. 


Mason Deaver, The Feeling of Falling in Love (Scholastic)

Alexandra Mae Jones, The Queen of Junk Island (Annick Press)

Anna-Marie McLemore, Self-Made Boys: A Great Gatsby Remix (Macmillan Children's)

Preston Norton, Hopepunk (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Jonny Garza Villa, Ander and SantiI Were Here (Macmillan)

Moderator: Ashley Leffel, Librarian, Griffin Middle School (TX)


11:00 AM - 11:30 AM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with SUPPER CLUB creator, Jackie Morrow. Morrow will be discussing her newest work, creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


11:05 AM - 11:30 AM ET | In-Booth Chat with Oni Press

Live Chat with Aaron Durán and Sara Soler (Season of the Bruja Vol. 1) in the Oni Press Booth


11:40 AM - 12:00 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Wattpad WEBTOON Book Group

Join debut author Brianna Joy Crump as she talks about her upcoming epic fantasy Of Cages and Crowns (November 22, 2022). Bring your questions and be sure to request a digital ARC!


11:45 AM - 12:15 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with JOE HILL'S RAIN creator, David M. Booher. Booher will be discussing his newest work, adapting non-graphic media for comics, his creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


11:45 AM - 12:00 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Annick Press & ECW

Award-winning author and graphic novelist S. M. Beiko presents The Stars of Mount Quixx, the first book in her newest YA fantasy series, The Brindlewatch Quintet.


11:45 AM - 12:15 PM | Break/Visit the Exhibit Hall


12:00 - 12:10 PM ET | A Special Announcement from Angeline Boulley 
#1 New York Times bestselling and multi-award-winning author Angeline Boulley has a special announcement exclusively for teachers and librarians! Join us live for the reveal of her big news!


12:10 PM - 12:35 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Oni Press

Live Chat with Jenn Woodall (Space Trash) in the Oni Press Booth


12:15 - 12:45 PM ET | Afternoon Keynote Conversation  

See how fantasy and Arthurian legend come together in two magical novels by Alexandra Bracken and Tracy Deonn.


Alexandra Bracken, Silver in the Bone (Random House Children's Books)

Tracy Deonn, Bloodmarked (Simon & Schuster)

Moderator: Monisha Blair, Head Librarian, Key Middle School, Fairfax County (VA)


12:30 PM - 1:00 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with BEWARE THE EYE OF ODIN creator, Doug Wagner. Wagner will be discussing his newest work, creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


Two Sessions Running Concurrently


12:50 - 1:20 PM ET | "I Have Teen Volunteers...Now What?"

Fellow YA librarians give ideas on how to make the most of your teen volunteers in your library.


Amy Laughlin, Teen Services Librarian, Greenwich Library (CT)

Kirsten Seidel, LCL Youth Services Manager, Lonoke County Libraries (AR)

Moderator: Justin Shannin, Teen Library Associate, Chicago Public Library (IL)


12:50 - 1:20 PM ET | Offering College & Career Prep in Your Library

Two YA librarians discuss what programs have helped their teens prepare for life after high school.


Aryssa Damron, Youth Services Librarian, District of Columbia Public Library System

Caitlin McMahan, Teen Librarian, Eugene Public Library (OR)

Moderator: Jonathan Hunt, Coordinator, Library Media Services, San Diego County Office of Education (CA)


1:10 PM - 1:40 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with WHAT'S THE FURTHEST PLACE FROM HERE? creator, Matthew Rosenberg. Rosenberg will be discussing his newest work, creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


Two Sessions Running Concurrently


1:25 - 2:15 PM ET | Graphic Novels for Every Reader

Teens are sure to find a favorite new graphic novel in these stories from space school to skating in the 1970's.


Erik Burnham, Potions Inc. (Mad Cave Studios)

Cristian Castelo, Wild Vol. 1: Or So I Was Born to Be (Oni Press)

Jenn Woodall, Space Trash (Oni Press)

Keezy Young, Taproot: A Story About a Gardener and a Ghost (Oni Press)

Moderator: Alicia Abdul, High School Librarian, Albany High School, City School District of Albany (NY)


1:25 - 2:15 PM ET | Happily Ever After with a Twist

What's your love language? These authors show off love through comedy, betrayal, and even a little magic.


Lane Clarke, Love Times Infinity (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Katharine McGee, American Royals: Rivals (Random House Children's Books)

Debbie Rigaud, A Girl's Guide to Love & Magic (Scholastic)

Ashley Schumacher, The Renaissance of Gwen Hathaway (Macmillan)

Sarvenaz Tash, A Whole Song and Dance (Disney Publishing Worldwide)

Moderator: Myiesha Speight, Book Reviewer, SLJ


1:50 PM - 2:10 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Image Comics

Come chat live with NEW MASTERS creator, Shof. Shof will be discussing his newest work, creative process, and answering your questions about how this work fits in your library!


Two Sessions Running Concurrently


2:20 - 3:10 PM ET | Hello, Nice to Meet You: Debuts Not to Miss

The dazzling debuts of the year are here!


Sheena Kamal, Fight Like a Girl (Penguin Teen Canada)

Krystal Marquis, The Davenports (Penguin Young Readers)

Trang Thanh Tran, She Is a Haunting (Bloomsbury)

Jessie Weaver, Live Your Best Lie (Disney Publishing Worldwide)

Catherine Yu, Direwood (Page Street Publishing)

Moderator: Elisa Garcia, Supervising Librarian of Teen Services, New York Public Library


2:20 - 3:10 PM ET | Historical Fiction 2.0

Historical fiction is way past including just one genre. These authors throw in some theater, mythology, and sci-fi to tell stories set in the past.


Kelly McWilliams, Mirror Girls (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Rati Mehrotra, Night of the Raven, Dawn of the Dove (Macmillan Children's)

Randi Pink, We Are the Scribes (Macmillan Children's)

Vesper Stamper, Berliners (Random House Children's Books)

Dana Schwartz, Immortality: A Love Story (Macmillan)

Moderator: Kristyn Dorfman, Lower and Middle School Librarian, Friends Academy (NY)


3:10 - 3:30 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Wattpad WEBTOON Book Group

Join Rebecca Phelps, author of Down World, as she talks about the next book in the Down World series, Yesterworld (December 6, 2022). Bring your questions and be sure to request a digital ARC!


3:10 - 3:35 PM ET | Break/Visit the Exhibit Hall


3:30 PM - 3:55 PM ET | In-Booth Chat with Oni Press

Live Chat with Cristian Castelo (Wild Vol. 1) in the Oni Press Booth


Two Sessions Running Concurrently

3:35 - 4:25 PM ET | My Favorite Thrillers
You'll be on the edge of your seat as these authors talk about stories of horror, power, and murder.


Nick Brooks, Promise Boys (Macmillan Children's)

N. Griffin, Trigger (Simon & Schuster)

Wendy Heard, Dead End Girls (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Tiffany D. Jackson, The Weight of Blood (HarperCollins Children's)

Courtney Summers, I'm the Girl (Macmillan)

Moderator: Becky Spratford, Reader's Advisory Specialist, RA for All and LJ Horror Columnist


3:35 - 4:25 PM ET | Sweet, Sweet Fantasy

These stories have a touch of paranormal, mythology, apocalyptic, and action stakes that breathe new life into the ever popular genre.


Kylie Lee Baker, The Empress of Time (Harlequin Trade Publishing)

Cinda Williams Chima, Runestone Saga: Children of Ragnarok (HarperCollins Children's)

Lily Anderson, Scout's Honor (Macmillan Children's)

Premee Mohamed, The Annual Migration of Clouds (ECW Press)

Amparo Ortiz, Last Sunrise in Eterna (Page Street Publishing)

Moderator: Kristi Chadwick, Massachusetts Library System, Northampton


4:30 - 5:00 PM ET | Closing Keynote Conversation

Authors Ryan La Sala and Aiden Thomas discuss gender identity representation in YA and expanding queer stories outside of the typical genre box. 


Ryan La Sala, The Honeys (Scholastic)

Aiden Thomas, The Sunbearer Trials (Macmillan Children's)

Moderator: Jesse Sanders, Branch Manager, Fairview Park Branch, Cuyahoga County Public Library (OH)



Tracy Deonn is the New York Times bestselling and Coretta Scott King - John Steptoe Award–winning author of Legendborn. She grew up in central North Carolina, where she devoured fantasy books and Southern food in equal measure. After earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communication and performance studies, Tracy worked in live theater, video game production, and K–12 education. When she’s not writing, Tracy speaks on panels at science fiction and fantasy conventions, reads fanfic, arranges puppy playdates, and keeps an eye out for ginger-flavored everything.  

Alexandra Bracken was born in Phoenix, Arizona. The daughter of a Star Wars collector, she grew up going to an endless string of Star Wars conventions and toy fairs, which helped spark her imagination and a deep love of reading. She sold her first book, Brightly Woven, as a senior in college, and later moved to New York City to work in children's book publishing, first as an editorial assistant, then in marketing. After six years, she took the plunge and decided to write full time. She now lives in Arizona with her tiny pup, Tennyson, in a house that's constantly overflowing with books.

Dr. Ibram X. Kendi is the author of many books including Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America, which won the National Book Award for Nonfiction, and five #1 New York Times bestsellers including How to Be an Antiracist; Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You, co-authored with Jason Reynolds; and Antiracist Baby, illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky. His latest books are How to Raise an Antiracist and Goodnight Racism, illustrated by Cbabi Bayoc. In 2020, Time magazine named him one of the 100 most influential people in the world. (Instagram @ibramxk)

Ryan LaSala (he/him, they/them) writes about surreal things happening to queer people. He is the author of Reverie and Be Dazzled and lives in New York City. Visit him online at

Nic Stone is an Atlanta native and a Spelman College graduate. Her debut novel for young adults, Dear Martin, and her debut middle-grade novel, Clean Getaway, were both New York Times bestsellers. Dear Justyce, the sequel to Dear Martin, recently published. (Instagram @nicstone)

Aiden Thomas is a trans, Latinx, New York Times bestselling author with an MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College. Originally from Oakland, California, they now make their home in Portland, OR. Their books include Cemetery Boys, Lost in the Never Woods, and The Sunbearer Trials.


S. K. Ali is a New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of several critically acclaimed books, including the 2018 William C. Morris finalist, Saints and Misfits. Her second novel, Love from A to Z, was a Today Show's "Read with Jenna'' Book Club selection, a Goodreads Readers' Choice finalist, and named one of the best YA books of all time by various media. She has a degree in Creative Writing and lives in Toronto with her family, which includes a very vocal cat named Yeti and a very quiet cat named Mochi.

Lily Anderson is the author of several novels for young adults including Scout's Honor, The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is You, Not Now Not Ever, and Undead Girl Gang. A former school librarian, she is deeply devoted to Shakespeare, fairy tales, and podcasts. Somewhere in Northern California, she is having strong opinions on musical theater.

Ted Anderson is a librarian, writer and mammal. He has written for properties including My Little Pony and Adventure Time, and has never successfully defrauded a major corporation. He lives in Minneapolis with no regrets.

Claire M. Andrews was raised in both Alaska and Scotland, but currently lives in Vermont; when not writing, she can usually be found outside swimming, skiing or hiking across the state’s famous green mountains. She is the author of Daughter of Sparta and Blood of Troy, and can be found on Instagram and Twitter at @cmandrewslit.

Kylie Lee Baker is the author of The Keeper of Night. She grew up in Boston and has since lived in Atlanta, Salamanca, and Seoul. Her writing is informed by her heritage (Japanese, Chinese, and Irish), as well as her experiences living abroad as both a student and teacher. She has a BA in creative writing and Spanish from Emory University and a master of library and information science degree from Simmons University.

Nick Brooks is an author and award-winning filmmaker from Washington, DC. His short film, Hoop Dreamin', earned him the George Lucas Scholar Award. He is currently in development for his first feature film, We Were Born Kings, with Mandalay Pictures. Before becoming a filmmaker, Nick was an educator working with at-risk youth and many of his stories are colored by his experiences with the children and families of his community. He is also the author of Nothing Interesting Ever Happens to Ethan Fairmont. Follow Nick on Twitter @whoisnickbrooks and on Instagram @officialnickbrooks.

Brian G. Buckmire is a senior staff attorney in the Criminal Defense Practice and Homicide Defense Task Force at the Legal Aid Society, representing indigent clients in Brooklyn, NY. He is the anchor for Law and Crime Daily, a nationally syndicated show covering the hottest cases and controversies from courtrooms nationwide. He is also a legal contributor for ABC, and has covered events like the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd, the trials against Harvey Weinstein and R. Kelly, and many more. Born in Toronto, of Caribbean heritage, Brian and his wife, Victoria, live in New York.

Erik Burnham is a writer and cartoonist. He's worked on both creator owned and licensed comics and still can't believe how lucky he is. Erik works with Mad Cave Studios, Dynamite, IDW, Insight Editions, Marvel, and Panini on properties such as Ghostbusters, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Back to the Future, Galaxy Quest, Scarlet Spider, New Warriors, Red Sonja and KISS, Potions Inc. -- with more on the way (which is good news, because he loves his work).

Cristian Castelo lives in Daly City, California, with his dog, Chicken, and his uncle Jorge. He graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2017 with a BFA in printmaking. When he isn't drawing comics, he is likely to be heard screaming at the TV while playing video games or running around the streets of San Francisco.

Lane Clarke lives in Northern Virginia and practices law in Washington D.C. You can follow her on Twitter at @lanewriteswords. Love Times Infinity is her debut novel.

A Southerner by birth and a Yankee by choice, Lynn Curlee began his art career in New York City after graduating with a master’s degree in art history from the University of Pennsylvania. In his 20’s, Lynn got his first one man show at the Christopher Gallery on Madison Avenue. In the 1990s, Lynn had the opportunity to illustrate a children’s book. He began writing books and this new career became the main event for him. He has written and illustrated 13 books for young readers, including the Sibert Honor book Brooklyn Bridge, Skyscraper, Trains, and The Great Nijinsky. Lynn lives in Connecticut.

Aryssa Damron is a youth services librarian with the DC Public Library System in Washington, D.C. She's a member of the 2022 Alex Awards, and the co-chair of the ALSC Membership committee. Her research specialities lie in college prep programs for public libraries, picture book biographies, and Little Women.

Matthew Dawkins is a Jamaican Watty award–winning author and poet, whose works on Wattpad have amassed over 380,000 reads. Matthew attends Western University in London, Ontario, where he pursues a BA in English literature from The School for Advanced Studies in Arts and Humanities. When he's not writing, Matthew can often be found rewatching the Harry Potter series on Netflix for the millionth time and procrastinating his assignments. Until We Break is his debut novel.

Born and raised in a small town in North Carolina, Mason Deaver is an award-nominated, bestselling author and designer living in Charlotte. Their debut novel, I Wish You All the Best, was named a Junior Library Guild Selection and an NPR Concierge Book. Besides writing, they're an active fan of horror movies and video games. You can find them online at

 J. Elle is the author of the instant New York Times and Indie bestseller Wings of Ebony, a YA novel about a Black teen who must lean into her ancestor’s magic to protect her inner-city community. She also wrote its sequel, Ashes of Gold. Elle is a former educator and first-generation college student with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s in educational administration and human development. When she’s not writing, Elle can be found mentoring aspiring writers, binging reality TV, loving on her three littles, or cooking up something true to her Louisiana roots.

Candace Fleming is the prolific and versatile award-winning author of many books for children and young adults. Her most recent title, The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh, received six starred reviews, was a Kirkus, PW, Booklist, and SLJ Best Book of the Year. Candace's The Family Romanov also received six starred reviews and won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Nonfiction and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and was recognized as a Sibert Nonfiction Honor Book. Visit her on the web at

N. Griffin is the author of The Whole Stupid Way We Are, for which she was named one of Publishers Weekly’s Flying Start Authors of 2013, as well as Just Wreck It All, Smashie McPerter and The Mystery of Room 11, Smashie McPerter and the Mystery of the Missing Goop, and Trigger. She received her MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Wendy Heard is the author of the acclaimed YA novel She's Too Pretty to Burn, which Kirkus Reviews praised as “a wild and satisfying romp” in a starred review, as well as two adult thrillers: The Kill Club and Hunting Annabelle. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, and Mystery Writers of America, and is a contributor at and Writer's Digest. Wendy lives in Los Angeles, California.

A graduate of the University of Washington’s iSchool, Caitlin McMahan has worked in public libraries for over six years. Initially interested in the broad category of youth services, Caitlin ultimately found her passion: working with teens. When not in teen library-land, Caitlin can usually be found exploring, snacking, and sometimes both at the same time.

Alexandra Mae Jones is a queer writer based in Toronto who often writes about rural Ontario, where she grew up. Her short fiction has been published in several literary magazines, and she is the 2020 Prairie Fire Fiction Contest winner. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph, and she is a freelance reporter currently writing for The Queen of Junk Island is her debut YA novel.

Tiffany D. Jackson is the New York Times bestselling author of Allegedly, Monday’s Not Coming, Let Me Hear a Rhyme, Grown, and White Smoke and coauthor of Blackout. A Walter Dean Myers Honor Book and Coretta Scott King–John Steptoe New Talent Award winner, she received her bachelor of arts in film from Howard University, earned her master of arts in media studies from the New School, and has over a decade in TV and film experience. The Brooklyn native still resides in the borough she loves.

Sheena Kamal holds an HBA in Political Science from the University of Toronto, and was awarded a TD Canada Trust scholarship for community leadership and activism around the issue of homelessness. Her bestselling debut The Lost Ones won her a Kobo Emerging Writer Prize, a Strand Critics Award, and Macavity Award for Best First Novel. Additionally, her writing has been featured in The Guardian (U.K.), Bustle, The Irish Times (Ireland), Writer's Digest, and Entertainment Weekly.

Amy Laughlin is the Teen Services Librarian at Greenwich Library in Greenwich, Connecticut. She is a former columnist and reviewer for SLJ, and served on ALSC's Notable Children's Books committee from 2018-2019. She can be found on twitter at @amysaurusrex.

Elizabeth Lim grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she was raised on a hearty diet of fairy tales, myths, and songs. Before becoming an author, Elizabeth was a professional film and video game composer, and she still tends to come up with her best book ideas when writing near a piano. An alumna of Harvard College and the Juilliard School, she now lives in New York City with her husband and her daughter. Elizabeth's internationally bestselling novels include Spin the Dawn, Unravel the Dusk, and Six Crimson Cranes. She is also a contributor to Disney's "A Twisted Tale" series.

Krystal Marquis happily spends most of her time in libraries. She studied biology at Boston College and University of Connecticut and now works as an Environmental, Health and Safety Specialist for the world's biggest bookseller. When not reading or writing or hunkered down in the library stacks, Krystal enjoys hiking, expanding her shoe collection, and plotting ways to create her own Jurassic Park. (Instagram @krystabelle_reads)

Lizzy Mason grew up in northern Virginia before moving to New York City for college and a career in publishing. Now back in Virginia with her two cats, when not reading or writing, Lizzy loves to travel. She has visited forty-four states and eleven countries so far. She is the author of The Art of Losing and Between the Bliss and Me.

Amber McBride teaches English literature at Northern Virginia Community College and has a BA in English and an MFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College. Her work has been published in Ploughshares, Provincetown Arts, Decomp and more. She is the author of Me (Moth) and We Are All So Good at Smiling. McBride lives in Charlottesville, VA.

Katharine McGee is the New York Times bestselling author of the American Royals series and the Thousandth Floor trilogy. She studied English and French literature at Princeton University and has an MBA from Stanford. She lives in her hometown of Houston, Texas, with her husband and son.

Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and taught by their family to hear la llorona in the Santa Ana winds. They are the author of The Weight of Feathers, a finalist for the 2016 William C. Morris Debut Award; 2017 Stonewall Honor Book When the Moon Was Ours, which was longlisted for the National Book Award in Young People’s Literature and was the winner of the James Tiptree Jr. Award; Wild Beauty; Blanca & Roja; Dark and Deepest Red; The Mirror Season; Lakelore; and Self-Made Boys: A Great Gatsby Remix.

Kelly McWilliams is a mixed-race writer. Agnes at the End of the World was a finalist for the Golden Kite Award, and Mirror Girls is a Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection and Target Book Club Pick. She’s written for Time, Bustle, and Publisher's Weekly among other outlets. She lives in Seattle with her family.

Premee Mohamed is an Indo-Caribbean scientist and author based in Edmonton, Canada. She completed degrees in Biology and Environmental Conservation at the University of Alberta. She is the author of Beneath the Rising and A Broken Darkness as well as multiple novellas. Her short fiction has appeared in a variety of print and audio venues.

Born and raised in India, Rati Mehrotra now lives and writes in Toronto, Canada. She is the author of the Asiana duology: Markswoman and its sequel Mahimata. Her stories have been shortlisted for The Sunburst Award, nominated for The Aurora Award, and appeared in multiple venues including The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Lightspeed Magazine, Uncanny Magazine, and Apex Magazine. She loves to cook; when not writing, she is often to be found in the kitchen, experimenting with new recipes.

Preston Norton is bisexual, slightly genderqueer, and married. His partner, Erin, is trying to put him on a diet, and he's revolting (both contexts apply). He has taught seventh grade and ninth grade English, mentored drug addicts, and mowed lawns (in no particular order). He is obsessed with 2001: A Space Odyssey and Quentin Tarantino.

Amparo Ortiz is the author of Blazewrath Games, Dragonblood Ring, and Last Sunrise in Eterna (coming March 2023). She was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, but she currently lives on the country’s northeastern coast.

Randi Pink is the author of Angel of Greenwood, praised by NPR as a story “American kids need to know”; Girls Like Us, a School Library Journal Best Book of 2019, and Into White, also published by Feiwel and Friends. She lives with her family in Birmingham, Alabama.

Debbie Rigaud is the coauthor of Alyssa Milano's New York Times bestselling Hope series and the author of Simone Breaks All the Rules and Truly Madly Royally. She grew up in East Orange, New Jersey, and started her career writing for entertainment and teen magazines. She now lives with her husband and children in Columbus, Ohio. Find out more at

Ashley Schumacher is a young adult author with a degree in creative writing from the University of North Texas. She lives in a small town with her antisocial but lovable husband and more books than are strictly necessary. When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her belting Disney or Broadway songs, protecting her snacks from her greedy golden retriever, hand embroidering, or playing Mario Kart. She is the author of Amelia Unabridged and Full Flight. She lives in Dallas, Texas. 

Dana Schwartz is a television writer and the creator of the number-one charting history podcast Noble Blood. As a journalist and critic, Dana has written for Entertainment Weekly, Marie Claire, Glamour, GQ, Cosmopolitan, Vanity Fair and more. She lives in Los Angeles with her fiancé, and their cats Eddie and Beetlejuice. Her books include Choose Your Own Disaster, The White Man's Guide to White Male Writers of the Western Canon, and Anatomy: A Love Story.

Kirsten Seidel has been working for Lonoke County Libraries since 2016. Through her work with LCL, Kirsten has developed a passion for youth services, especially with regards to teen services, and was the recipient of the Ann Lightsey award for Children's Librarianship through the Arkansas Library Association in the fall of 2021. As of last year, Kirsten is working towards completing her MLIS degree.

Born in Germany and raised in New York City, Vesper Stamper writes and illustrates novels which tell, through words and pictures, stories of history's rhymes. Her debut illustrated YA novel, What the Night Sings, about two teens emerging from the Holocaust, was a National Book Award Nominee, National Jewish Book Award Finalist, and Sydney Taylor Book Award Winner. Vesper lives with her husband, filmmaker Ben Stamper, and her two teenagers, in the Northeast.

Courtney Summers is the bestselling and critically acclaimed author of several novels for young adults, including Cracked Up to Be, All the Rage, and Sadie. Her work has been released to multiple starred reviews, received numerous awards and honors--including the Edgar Award, John Spray Mystery Award, Cybils Award and Odyssey Award--and has been recognized by many library, 'Best Of' and Readers' Choice lists. She lives and writes in Canada.

Trang Thanh Tran grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in a big family of Vietnamese refugees. They enjoy writing speculative stories about food, belonging, and the diaspora. Their favorite snack is iced coffee and a buttermilk biscuit, making the South the perfect home. She Is a Haunting is their debut novel.

Sarvenaz Tash is the author of The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love, Virtually Yours, Three Day Summer, and The Mapmaker and the Ghost. She is the co-author of the upcoming adult rom-com Ghosting: A Love Story (written as Tash Skilton). Sarvenaz was born in Tehran, Iran, and grew up on Long Island, NY. She received her BFA in Film and Television from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She has dabbled in all sorts of writing including screenwriting, Emmy-award winning copywriting, and professional tweeting for the likes of Bravo and MTV.. Sarvenaz currently lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and two young sons.

Jonny Garza Villa (they/them) is an author of contemporary young adult literature with characters and settings inspired by their own Tejane, Chicane, and queer identities. Their debut YA novel Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun was a Pura Belpré Honor Book and a Kirkus Best YA Fiction of 2021 selection. When not writing, Jonny enjoys reading, playing Dungeon and Dragons, visiting taquerías, listening to Selena, and caring for their many cacti children. They live in San Antonio.

Before writing about flawed, funny teens with big hearts, Jessie Weaver spent ten years teaching them English. She completed the Stanford University online novel writing program in 2019. Though she’s an East Coast girl at heart, she currently lives in Colorado with her husband and two daughters. Live Your Best Lie is her first novel.

Ashley Woodfolk has loved reading and writing for as long as she can remember. She graduated from Rutgers University and worked in children's book publishing for over a decade. Now a full-time mom and writer, Ashley lives in a sunny Brooklyn apartment with her cute husband, her cuter dog, and the cutest baby in the world. Her books include The Beauty That Remains, When You Were Everything, Blackout, Nothing Burns As Bright As You, the Flyy Girls Series, and Opening My Eyes Underwater.

Jenn Woodall is an award-winning cartoonist and illustrator who lives in Toronto, Ontario. She grew up in Brampton, where she read comics and manga and scrounged Chinatown for bootleg anime VHS tapes as well as colorful clothes. She moved to Toronto for university, where she studied fashion design, followed by illustration at OCAD University. She has a small cat named Boo.

Keezy Young is a queer comic artist and illustrator from the Pacific Northwest, currently in Seattle, WA. Keezy's first graphic novel, Taproot debuted in September 2017 and has won several awards, including best graphic novel by the Rainbow Book List - LGBTQ Books for Children and Teens 2017, The Texas Library Association's Maverick Reading List 2018, and Best LGBT Graphic Novels of 2017 by The Advocate.

Catherine Yu writes dark speculative fiction. She was born in Nanjing and is now based in New York. She is a graduate of Odyssey Writing Workshop. Direwood is her debut novel.


Xiran Jay Zhao is a #1 New York Times-bestselling and award-winning author of sci-fi & fantasy books and YouTuber who makes content about Chinese history and culture. 


Alicia Abdul is a high school librarian in Albany, NY. She shares her reading (and dresses) on Instagram @ReadersBeAdvised and blogs at She's served or chaired on several YALSA book committees, presents at local, state, and national conferences on books, programs, and graphic novels, and recently became an adjunct for two graduate programs on young adult literature.

Monisha Blair is the head librarian at Key Middle School in Springfield, VA. She earned her Masters of Information from Rutgers University in December 2020, with a concentration in School Library Media. She achieved a B.A. in Journalism from George Washington University in 2005. Since January 2020, Monisha has reviewed middle grade fiction, picture books, and young adult fiction for School Library Journal. She served on the SLJ Best Books Committees for 2020-2022.

Ron Block is a Branch Manager in the Cuyahoga County Public Library System in Cleveland, Ohio. His passion for libraries, reading and cooking have fueled non-traditional library programs and community collaborations. He was named a 2020 Library Journal Mover and Shaker and serves as a judge for the James Beard Cookbook Awards. Ron has recently become the Podcast Host for, representing 4 NYT Bestselling authors.

Emma Carbone is a librarian and blogger. She has been blogging about books at Miss Print ( since 2007. When she isn’t reading, you can find her baking, crocheting, or exploring local museums.

Kristi Chadwick is a Consultant for Massachusetts Library System, providing advisory and continuing education for multitype library members all across the Commonwealth. Kristi is also the columnist for Library Journal's Science Fiction & Fantasy reviews. You can find her discussing writing, books, libraries, and her love for coffee, chickens, and fountain pens on Twitter @booksnyarn.

Crystal Chen is a teen librarian at The New York Public Library. She chaired YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels for Teens in 2020-21 and is currently a community admin for We Here (

Kristyn Dorfman has been a school librarian for over a decade and has worked with children of all ages, from early childhood to High School Seniors. She has been reviewing for School Library Journal since 2013 and has served on several ALA and ALA affiliate committees including most recently APALA's 2020-2021 Youth Literature Award. She spends most of her free time reading, writing, doing the crossword, and spending time with her three young children.

Sandra Farag, MLIS, is Head of Youth Services at Kalamazoo Public Library (MI).

Elisa A. Garcia is a Supervising Librarian of Teen Services at the New York Public Library. She is motivated to foster a love of reading in reluctant teen readers and therefore strives to introduce them to a diverse world and experiences through books.

Karen Ginman is a librarian and certified teacher. She is the Manager of Collections & Digital Resources for Herrick District Library in Holland, MI. She holds a M.A. in Teaching & a MLIS with a Certificate in Archives and Preservation of Cultural Materials. You can find out what she is reading on Twitter @karenginman.

Jonathan Hunt reviews for Horn Book, occasionally writes for School Library Journal, and frequently serves on award committees. Fortunately, he has an eight-year-old son, a two-year-old son, and a five-month-old daughter who help him evaluate picture books.

Ashley Leffel is the librarian at Griffin Middle school in Frisco, TX.  Before becoming a librarian, she taught music for many years. She loves reading all types of books and fangirling for her favorite authors. When not reading, she enjoys Broadway musicals and can quote just about every episode of Bob’s Burgers.

Jesse Sanders is the Branch Manager of the Fairview Park Branch of Cuyahoga County Public Library, and has worked in Library Management and Supervision for over 10 years. A lifelong advocate of Public Libraries, Jesse specializes in collaborative, organic approaches to finding solutions that meet the needs of every library customer. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking and gardening and can usually be found doing both while listening to an audiobook.

Justin Shannin is a teen library associate at Chicago Public Library where he assists with systemwide program initiatives and social media content. He reviews books for the library's teen "Best of the Best" committee and writes book recommendation blogs for the Chicago Public Library website. He received a masters degree in library and information science from University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG) and a B.A. in theater from Northwestern University.

Myiesha Speight holds a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in English with a minor in History from Winston-Salem State University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. In 2019, she received her Master's of Library and Information Science with a specialization in Diversity and Inclusion from the University of Maryland College Park’s iSchool located in College Park, Maryland. Myiesha Speight is currently a Book Reviewer for SLJ.

Becky Spratford, Reader's Advisory Specialist, RA for All and LJ Horror Columnist.














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