Library of Congress

National Book Festival

Queens, N.Y., native Rita Williams-Garcia says, “Writing stories for young people is my passion and my mission.” Recipient of the PEN/Norma Klein Award, Williams-Garcia is known for her works’ realistic portrayal of teens of color. For her New York Times best-seller “One Crazy Summer,” she won the 2011 Newbery Honor Award, the Coretta Scott King Award and the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. In her latest Coretta Scott King Award-winning novel “P.S. Be Eleven” (HarperCollins), the sequel to “One Crazy Summer,” character Delphine Gaither returns to Brooklyn with her family and tries to “be 11” while she can despite the changing circumstances and responsibilities around her. This historical fiction tells the story of three sisters growing up amid the backdrop of the Black Panthers, Vietnam War and the overall radical change of the 1960s. Williams-Garcia teaches at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in the Writing for Children & Young Adults Program.

Previous National Book Festival Appearances

Rita Williams-Garcia

Photo by Jason Berger