In 2006 I started this blog to write about teaching, my life’s work; literature, especially that created for children; history, especially as it is taught to and learned by children; Africa, especially Sierra Leone where I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer; and other sundry topics as they come to my attention.

I contribute to a variety of publications including the New York Times Book Review, the Horn Book Magazine, and School Library Journal. Along the way I’ve helped select several awards including the 2019 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards (chair), the 2015 New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books, and the 2008 Newbery; I also originated and co-ran School Library Journal’s Battle of the Kids’ Books.

A lifelong educator I teach fourth grade in New York City and, after writing several books for teachers, wrote my first for children,  Africa is My Home: A Child of the Amistadand am hard at work on another. I’m fortunate to be represented by Stephen Barbara of Inkwell Management.

As for Alice and her education, Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is my favorite book.


12 responses to “About

  1. Good luck with the new blog – looks VERY interesting to me.


  2. Congratulations on your new blog from a YA & children’s author in Oz. I’m a fellow rutgers list subscriber and always enjoy your comments.

    You may know the books of some of my friends who have had their work published in the USA – Marcus Zusak, Deborah Abela, James Valentine, Jaclyn Moriaty, Alyssa Brugman, Melina Marchetts, Steven Herrick, Margo Lanagan, Jackie French & Bruce Whately and many more.

    Hopefuly one day my books will reach the US shores too, especially I AM JACK which is in Australia a rite of passage book (school bullying) and BUTTERFLIES ( YA novel which is listed as Outstanding Youth Literature on Disability by IBBY)

    Congratulations once again.


  3. This looks like a lovely new blog, Monica–I”ve long enjoyed your posts on child_lit and am happy to see you here as well. My new blog is also (mostly) about children’s lit, and you’ll see I got my title from Alice as well…


  4. Rosemary Brosnan

    It was nice to finally meet you today, after long admiring your interesting posts from afar. I look forward to reading your blog regularly–all the best with it!


  5. Rosemary Brosnan

    Dear Monica,

    Your blog about Africa was right on target. Would you please send me your address; I want to share with you a book I published this year–WEB OF LIES by Beverley Naidoo, in which she touches on Sierra Leone.




  6. Bonny Becker

    Monica, I enjoy your site very much. I’m wondering if you have a feed. It’s not a technology I know much about other than to point and click. (So I hope I’m not making a gaff equivalent to Bush’s “the Google”. ) But I’m sure others would be interested in subscribing to a feed from your blog, if it’s available.



  7. Bonny,

    I think I did it. That little icon on the right (with the last ten posts below) is suppose to be for subscribing.

    I’m still learning how to do all this!


  8. jessica

    To Whom It May Concern,

    We saw your blog and are interested in pitching an idea. There was no contact information on your site that I could find and I was wondering if you could give me the name and email address of who best to speak with about this. Thank you.


  9. Sorry to leave you a comment here but tried to on the Dalton school page and couldn’t get through the registration process and there was no email address I could find. Anyway, we’re thrilled to have an audience. We’ll be commenting back soon!


  10. Hi! I work for Random House Children’s Books and we’re always looking for new blog outlets for book reviews. Would you be interested in receiving review copies of some of our books? Please let me know if you are!


  11. Monica:

    Kelly Herold of BIG A little a suggested I write you. Do you have an email address through which I could contact you?

    Best wishes,

    T.K. Welsh


  12. Hi–

    I just want to say that we admire your blog here at Book Divas. I’d love to talk to you about our author visits and community. Email me if you have the chance.

    Thanks and have a great weekend!