This past September, I attended the 2016 National Book Festival, hosted by the Library of Congress. The day was full of author presentations, signings and family- friendly activities, with hundreds of best-selling authors in attendance.
While I would have loved to attend all of the presentations, I was only able to take part in a few. The highlight of my day happened to be not only attending a presentation by Jason Reynolds, but meeting him and having my books signed.
I first heard of Jason Reynolds at the Masterclass in Children’s Literature hosted by We Need Diverse Books. His aura captivated me, and I knew at that moment that I had to read his books. Jason writes books for young people, with a particular focus on boys. His goal is to get more young boys reading.
Having my books signed was exciting for a number of reasons. It allowed for me to physically meet an author I admire. It also allowed for me to see that, as an author, I can have success as well. Lastly, the inspirational words that he wrote in my books will help me to keep going in an industry that can be daunting. Be brave! Don’t give up!
Check out some of these books by Jason Reynolds!
Ghost wants to be the fastest sprinter on his middle school track team, but his past is slowing him down. Ghost has natural talent, but no formal track training. If he could only stay on track, he just might be the best sprinter in the city.
Sixteen-year-old Rashad was only looking for a bag of chips at the corner store. Instead, he was greeted with a fist-happy cop, who mistakes Rashad for a shoplifter, all the while ignoring Rashad’s pleadings that he didn’t do anything. Quinn saw the entire thing happen, but refuses to believe that Paul Galluzo, the man who practically raised him and is a Springfield police officer, could do such a thing. Both Rashad and Quinn are faced with decisions they haven’t had to make until now.
All American Boys is a 2016 Coretta Scott King Author Honor book. It also received the Walter Dean Myers Award for Outstanding Children’s Literature.
When two brothers decide to prove how brave they are, everything backfires, literally. Genie and his big brother, Ernie, leave Brooklyn for the very first time to spend the summer with their grandparents all the way in Virginia. Realizing that their grandfather is blind, Genie is awestruck and curious. Genie thinks Grandpop is the bravest guy he’s ever known, but he starts to notice that his grandfather never leaves the house. And when he finds the secret room that Grandpop is always disappearing into, he begins to wonder if his grandfather is really so brave after all.
What do you plan to read next? Tell us in the comments below!
Find Your InspirationCheck Out a Jason Reynolds Book!
Brittany is a Children’s Library Assistant at Main, where she enjoys reading stories, singing songs and ending her story times in a multitude of bubbles. Reading isn’t her only love; she also enjoys writing for children and adults alike.