The most anticipated librarian gathering of the year is back, still fully virtual and free to attend!
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Join us on October 15 for the most anticipated librarian gathering of the year, back by popular demand and still fully virtual and free to attend!

Our day-long program of author panels, in-depth conversations, and keynote talks will keep you informed, inspired, and entertained. Attendees will hear about the latest and most exciting forthcoming titles for children, tweens, and teens, from picture books and nonfiction to graphic novels and YA, and engage in Q&A sessions with authors and illustrators.


9:00 AM ET: Exhibit Hall Opens

9:30 AM–10:00 AM ET: Welcome and Opening Keynote 
Kwame Alexander, Becoming Muhammad Ali (HMH; Little, Brown)
Jacqueline Woodson, Before the Ever After (Penguin)
Moderator: Kathy Ishizuka, Editor in Chief, School Library Journal


Morning Concurrent Sessions


10:05 AM–10:55 AM ET: In the Midst of It All: Books for Middle Graders
Representing a range of genres, from fantasy to historical fiction, these authors will talk about the challenges and rewards of writing for the middle grade audience.
Sarwat Chadda, City of the Plague God (Disney)
Dan Gutman, Houdini and Me (Holiday House)
David Levithan, The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan. S. (as Told to His Brother) (Random House)
Wendy Orr, Cuckoo’s Flight (Pajama Press)
Moderator: Ashleigh Williams, Assistant Editor, Chapter Books & Middle Grade, School Library Journal

10:05 AM–10:55 AM ET: Picture Books To Bolster the Spirit
We're living in especially turbulent times, but books can be a balm. These authors will speak about creating age-appropriate works that still sensitively address deep issues, from Black Lives Matter to grief.
Jessixa Bagley, Daisy (Holiday House)
Matthew Burgess, The Bear and the Moon (Chronicle Books)
Shani Mahiri King, Have I Ever Told You That Black Lives Matter? (Tilbury House)
Baptiste Paul, Peace (NorthSouth Books)
Monique Gray Smith, When We Are Kind (Orca Books)
Moderator: Melanie Kletter, School Library Journal Reviewer

10:05 AM–10:55 AM ET: Beyond Just the Facts: Noteworthy Nonfiction
Taking on a variety of topics, all deeply relevant, from disease to the First Amendment, these authors will speak about the importance of crafting nonfiction that’s accurate, trustworthy, and appealing to children and teens.
Christy Mihaly, Free for You and Me: What Our First Amendment Means (Albert Whitman)
Karyn Parsons, Flying Free: How Bessie Coleman's Dreams Took Flight (Little, Brown)
Marilee Peters, Patient Zero: Solving the Mysteries of Deadly Epidemics, 2nd Edition (Annick Press)
Don Tate, William Still and His Freedom Stories: The Father of the Underground Railroad (Peachtree)
Jamia Wilson, This Book Is Feminist: An Intersectional Primer for Feminists in Training (Quarto)
Moderator: Vanessa Willoughby, Associate Editor, Nonfiction & Series Made Simple, School Library Journal

10:55 AM–11:25 PM ET: Break to visit booths

11:30 AM–12:05 PM ET: Authors in Dialog
Nikki Grimes, Legacy: Women Poets of the Harlem Renaissance (Bloomsbury)
Carole Boston Weatherford, Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre (Lerner)
Moderator: Kara Yorio, News Editor, School Library Journal

12:10 PM–12:40 PM ET: Afternoon Keynote
Bryan Collier, All Because You Matter (Scholastic)
Moderator: Sarah Bayliss, News & Features Editor, School Library Journal

12:40 PM–1:40 PM ET: Lunch break and booth visits


Afternoon Concurrent Sessions I


1:40 PM–2:30 PM ET: Remaking History in Fiction and Nonfiction
History is more than the dates and names in textbooks; it's the stories of everyday people—especially the accounts of marginalized people, which have often gone untold. These authors will discuss surfacing information that has gone unaddressed in history textbooks but that is vital to give students a well-rounded and nuanced understanding of history.
Kyandreia Jones, Choose Your Own Adventure Spies: Mary Bowser (Chooseco)
Randi Pink, Angel of Greenwood (Macmillan)
Michael O. Tunnell, Desert Diary: Japanese American Kids Behind Barbed Wire (Charlesbridge)
Lee Wind, No Way, They Were Gay?: Hidden Lives and Secret Loves (Lerner)
Paula Yoo, From a Whisper to a Rallying Cry: The Killing of Vincent Chin and the Trial That Galvanized the Asian American Movement (Norton)
Moderator: Mahnaz Dar, Reference and Professional Reading Editor, School Library Journal & Library Journal

1:40 PM–2:30 PM ET: We Are Family: Picture Book Representations of the Ties That Bind
There's no singular definition of family, but these picture books offer a few examples of what it can look like. These authors will talk about how they chose to depict families and why it's important for all readers to see representations of their own families in books.
Thao Lam, Paper Boat: A Refugee Story (OwlKids Books)
Carrie Lara, The Heart of Mi Familia (Magination Press)
NoNieqa Ramos, Your Mama (HMH)
Farida Zaman, When Mom’s Away (Second Story Press)
Moderator: Kimberly Olson Fakih, Senior Editor, Picture Books, School Library Journal

2:35 PM–3:10 PM ET: Authors in Dialog
David Bowles, translator, The Immortal Boy: Sacred Stories of the Americas; The Sea Ringed World (Levine Querido)
Anton Treuer, Everything You Wanted To Know About Indians but Were Afraid To Ask: Young Readers Edition (Levine Querido)
Moderator: Cynthia Letitch Smith, cofounder, Heartdrum imprint (HarperCollins)
Staff Moderator: Stephanie Klose, Media Editor, School Library Journal & Library Journal

3:10 PM–3:40 PM ET: Break to visit booths


Afternoon Concurrent Sessions II


3:40 PM–4:30 PM ET: In Between Reads
Finding books for students who can read independently but aren't quite ready for longer middle grade titles is a challenge. These authors will discuss how they create appealing titles that meet readers where they are.
Atinuke, Too Small Tola (Candlewick)
Art Coulson, The Reluctant Storyteller (Reycraft)
Zetta Elliott, The Dragon Thief (Random)
Staff Moderator: Nia Todd, Sales/Marketing Assistant, School Library Journal & Library Journal

3:40 PM–4:30 PM ET: Turbulent Tales for Teens
Writing in a variety of genres and formats—fantasy, thriller, graphic novel, and more—these authors will speak about exploring the tumultuous period that is adolescence through characters who undergo difficult journeys.
Olivia Chadha, Rise of the Red Hand (Workman)
Isabel Ibañez, Written in Starlight (Page Street)
L.L. McKinney, Nubia: Real One (DC Comics)
Marieke Nijkamp, Even if We Break (Sourcebooks)
Ray Stoeve, Between Perfect and Real (Abrams Books)
Moderator: Shelley Diaz, Reviews Editor, School Library Journal

4:35 PM–5:05 PM ET: Closing Conversation
Hena Khan, Amina’s Song (Simon & Schuster)
Meg Medina, Merci Suárez Can’t Dance (Candlewick Press)
Moderator: Anja Webb, Assistant Editor, School Library Journal & Library Journal


AKJ Publishing
Albert Whitman
Annick Press
Candlewick Press
Choose Your Own Adventure
Chronicle Books
Harper Collins Children Books
Holiday House
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Junior Library Guild
Little Brown Young Readers
Magination Press
North South
Owl Kids
Pajama Press
Page Street
Penguin Random House
Quarto Knows
Random House Children Books
Reycraft Books
Second Story Press
Simon Schuster Children
Sterling Childrens Books
Vox Books
Workman Publishing
Worthy Kids
WW Norton

Be sure to visit the virtual exhibit hall to network with leading publishers, enjoy additional author chats, and download digital galleys and other free resources.

We are anticipating an unprecedented number of library and education professionals to attend this virtual DOD, so you may find the environment or live sessions become full during the day.

But fear not! All sessions and author chats will be available for viewing on-demand within an hour of their initial broadcast, and the entire event will be available on-demand until December 15.

Who should attend? Registration is open to librarians and educators.

If you have any questions, email us at

If you are a service provider or publisher and would like to sponsor the event, please contact Advertising Director Roy Futterman.

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