The Center for Children’s and Young Adult Literature at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and the Knox County Public Library are pleased to present An Evening with Rita Williams-Garcia at 7:00 on Monday, April 4 at Alumni Memorial Building, 1408 Middle Drive, Room 32. The event is free and open to the public.
Author of several award winning novels, Rita Williams-Garcia continues to break new ground in young people’s literature. Her works include One Crazy Summer, P.S. Be Eleven, Gone Crazy in Alabama, and Jumped.
Known for their realistic portrayal of teens of color, Williams-Garcia’s works have been recognized by the Coretta Scott King Award Committee, PEN/Norma Klein, American Library Association, and Parents’ Choice, among others. She has served on the National Book Award Committee for Young People’s Literature.
“I was born in Queens, N.Y, on April 13, 1957. My mother, Miss Essie, named me ‘NoMo’ immediately after my birth. Although I was her last child, I took my time making my appearance. I like to believe I was dreaming up a good story and wouldn’t budge until I was finished. Even now, my daughters call me ‘Pokey Mom’ because I slow poke around when they want to go-go-go,” said Williams-Garcia.
“I learned to read early, and was aware of events going on as I grew up in the 60s. In the midst of real events, I daydreamed and wrote stories. Writing stories for young people is my passion and my mission. Teens will read. They hunger for stories that engage them and reflect their images and experiences.”
The University of Tennessee Center for Children's and Young Adult Literature believes that literature is essential to the literacy, learning, social, emotional and aesthetic development of young people. Guided by this belief, it is the mission of the Center to celebrate and promote literature and to encourage reading through outreach to children and their parents, to current and future teachers and librarians, to members of the community, and to scholars and thinkers across disciplines.