I have five books coming out this year. I am really not particularly prolific; some could have come out last year, some next year. They’re all from different publishers, though, and each of these publishers independently decided: 2019.

My point is that I feel like I have hit the 2019 jackpot for beautiful book art. You may already know of the book that was released in January, This Promise of Change, co-authored with Jo Ann Allen Boyce, cover art by the fabulous Ekua Holmes. (Bloomsbury Children’s Books.) And now I have the art for a picture book that will be published in August by Kar-Ben Books. It’s called The Key From Spain, and it’s the story of Flory Jagoda, now a nonagenarian, who is known as the keeper of the flame of Sephardic music, as well as of the Ladino language. Flory traces her family back to Al-Andalus–medieval Muslim Spain–and then to Turkey and Bosnia, where she grew up. The illustrations are by Sonja Wimmer, and they bring all of Flory’s multiple heritages and influences to life. I’ll say again: jackpot.



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4 Responses to Jackpot!

  1. Congrats! I remember hearing Flory Jagoda perform at Temple Shalom, with Ramon Tasat. Loved it!

  2. Congrats! I am extra excited about The Key From Spain. I hope there is a Spanish language version in the works. (I’ve been trying to learn the language since my daughter moved there. Picture books are about my speed at this point.) Yes, JACKPOT, and well earned!

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