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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Cynthia and Greg Leitich Smith

While I can't speak with absolute authority on this, award winning author Cynthia Leitich Smith's website and blog (Cynsations), are the top destinations for anyone interested in literature for children and young adults. Actually, who needs authority. Cynthia's website is definitely the best destination!

Seriously, there's so much great stuff on her recently redesigned main site that trying to sum it up could take forever. Instead I'll just recommend clicking over and losing yourself in all the wonderful articles, videos, links, news, advice she has gathered over the years.

There is one section on her site I wanted to specifically highlight though, as it's relevant to Lonely Comma's purpose. Under the link to Children's and YA Literature Resources is a section for Diverse Reads. Within it are sub-categories such as multicultural, multiracial, Native Americans, and an Asian-Heritage page. Cynthia's husband, Greg Leitich Smith, an author himself, provides us with the introduction:
"The field of Asian American children's and young adult literature includes many wonderful books — poetically written and exquisitely illustrated. The number of children's authors and illustrators working from the relevant communities is steadily on the rise, and some of these folks — like Yumi Heo, Cynthia Kadohata, Allen Say, An Na, Linda Sue Park, Janet Wong, Lisa Yee, and Laurence Yep — have received great critical acclaim.

Books featuring Japanese, Chinese, and Korean characters — while still limited in number — are far more prevalent than those reflecting any other Asian or Asian American community, especially the Southeast Asian. We hope to see more quality books reflecting the diversity of Asian American life in the future."
-Children's and YA Books with Asian Heritage Themes-
On the rest of the page, there's a few highlighted books as well as links to interviews and featured authors on the sidebar. Also, there are separate sections for anthologies, Chinese heritage, Korean heritage, Japanese heritage, and a resources and links section. In a way, Lonely Comma hopes to be a continuation of the passion and work the Leitich Smiths have obviously put in and they've been kind of inspiring figures. Currently Cynthia teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts so that could call for a field trip right? Leitich Smith also does quite a few events. Consider yourself lucky if you've been able to catch any of her events or speeches.

Cynthia Leitich Smith
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Greg Leitich Smith
Website | Blog


Tarie said...

Yay for Greg and Cynthia! :o)

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