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About the Author
Erin Entrada Kelly was awarded the Newbery Medal for Hello, Universe and a Newbery Honor for We Dream of Space. 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, and is on the faculty at Hamline University. Her short fiction has been nominated for the Philippines Free Press Literary Award for Short Fiction and the Pushcart Prize. Before becoming a children's author, Erin worked as a journalist and magazine editor and received numerous awards for community service journalism, feature writing, and editing from the Louisiana Press Association and the Associated Press.
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; Lalani of the Distant Sea, an Indie Next Pick; Those Kids from Fawn Creek, named to numerous best of the year lists; and three acclaimed novels for younger readers, Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey, Surely Surely Marisol Rainey, and Only Only Marisol Rainey, which she also illustrated. She lives in Delaware.
"A smart, sensitive, and resilient heroine who is authentic and relatable in her strengths and imperfections. This poignant novel would make for a particularly fine readaloud; expect visceral reactions . . . This is a must-read for those kids cringing at their own identities."--Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Kelly skillfully weaves together the story of misfit Apple, her love of music, and a budding romance with a new boy at school, while never losing focus on the central issue of what it is like to be the 'other.'"--Booklist
"Each character in Kelly's debut novel . . . is portrayed with remarkable authenticity. The awkwardness and intense feelings inherent to middle school are palpable. Children's literature has been waiting for Apple Yengko--a strong, Asian-American girl whose ethnic identity simultaneously complicates and enriches her life."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Will resonate with any student in middle school who has felt different and ostracized. The author has skillfully captured the various characters that populate Apple's . . . school."--School Library Journal (starred review)
"Writing with acute sensitivity and sometimes painful realism, debut novelist Kelly skillfully captures the betrayals, tentative first crushes, and fluctuating emotions of middle school ... a true triumph."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)