Tucson Festival of Books

Kekla Magoon (she/her/hers)


Friend of the Festival

Kekla Magoon writes novels and nonfiction books for children and teens, often exploring themes of identity, community, empowerment and social justice. Acclaimed titles include "The Season of Styx Malone," "How It Went Down" and "Revolution In Our Time: The Black Panther Party's Promise to the People," which was a Michael L. Printz Honor winner, Coretta Scott King Honor winner and National Book Award Finalist. Magoon received the 2021 Margaret A. Edwards Award, a body-of-work recognition for her significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature. Her new books are "Mission One: The Vice Principal Problem" and "Ketanji: Justice Jackson's Journey to the U.S. Supreme Court." She lives in Vermont with two energetic orange cats.

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Awards: NAACP Image Award, Coretta Scott King Honor, Michael L. Printz Award Honor, Margaret A. Edwards Award, Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, John Steptoe Award, Edgar Allen Poe Award Nominee; National Book Award Finalist, Walter Dean Myers Award Honor, In the Margins Award

Communities: LGBTQ+, African American, Mixed Race


Scheduled events:
The Challenge of Writing a Graphic Novel
Three authors who made the shift from writing successful chapter books to writing a graphic novel share that they learned about how to write a graphic novel.

Education Room 351 (Seats 46, Wheelchair accessible)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm
Children
Signing area: Signing Area - Children (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Kekla Magoon, Sarah Mlynowski, Cynthia Leitich Smith
Moderator: Desirée Cueto
The Power of Truth
The power and complications of truth-telling shines through in these books as characters pursue mysteries that reveal secrets and create change. Two cousins work to expose the misuse of power in their school, a girl moves from lies to truth, and a young wizard does his best to help others. They all struggle with whether truth is always good.

Education Room 353 (Seats 92, Wheelchair accessible)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Children
Signing area: Signing Area - Children (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Elana K. Arnold, Kekla Magoon, Adam Rex, Cynthia Leitich Smith
Moderator: Ruth McKoy Lowery
It's Up to Kids to Save the World
In these adventures, kids must step up to save the world. In the Hilo graphic novel series by Judd Winick, Gina must turn back time to save the world, while Lisa McMann's The Forgotten Five series follows abandoned children of supernatural criminals. The Blue Stars mission book by Kekla Magoon and Cynthia Leitich Smith deals with the real world and how kids can make a difference.

Education Room 353 (Seats 92, Wheelchair accessible)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Children
Signing area: Signing Area - Children (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Kekla Magoon, Lisa McMann, Cynthia Leitich Smith, Judd Winick
Moderator: Elizabeth O'Donnell

Books:
Blue Stars: Mission One: The Vice Principal Problem
Children
Candlewick Press
March 2024
ISBN 9781536228663
176 pages
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Ketanji
Justice Jackson's Journey to the U.S. Supreme Court
Children
HarperCollins Publishers
June 2023
ISBN 9780063296169
40 pages