Based out of New York, Sara Woolley is a writer and illustrator whose children’s books honor the history and culture of her family. Her book Los Pirineos is a mostly true memoir based on the story of her family’s immigration from Colombia. It was funded with a grant from the National Association of Latino Arts & Culture and has spawned a follow-up called The Ninth of April/El Noveno de Abril. She also illustrated the book Charlotte and the Quiet Place written by Deborah Sosin. Woolley’s illustrations have a beautiful sense of movement and dynamics. Her characters are also beautifully rendered. Woolley’s work can be found at her site.
“There are only two covers for a YA novel; a girl with her back to the camera or a close-up of a white girl’s face.”
That’s what Dan Wells told me at this year’s Emerald City Comicon when I asked about his Mirador series. Wells is breaking the conventions with his main character, Marisa Carnesca and her group of cyberpunk, hacker friends who also happen to be women of color. Set in a futuristic Los Angeles, Marisa and her friends find themselves dealing with everything from cyber drugs to heists. His first YA series, Partials, also featured a WOC protagonist, but like so many YA heroines, her face was not featured on the cover and so when it came to Bluescreen, the first book in the Mirador series, he insisted that Marisa be front and center and facing the camera. Wells also writes adult fiction like his I Am Not a Serial Killer trilogy. Wells’ work can be found wherever books are sold.