Celebrating the Power of the Written Word to Create Change
On March 23, 2022, Goddard Riverside invited the community to join us for an in-person discussion about Pura’s Cuentos: How Pura Belpré Reshaped Libraries with Her Stories with the author by Annette Bay Pimentel, winner of our 2021 Goddard Riverside CBC Youth Book Prize for Social Justice.
On May 2, 2022, Goddard Riverside invited the community to join us for an online discussion about Children Under Fire: An American Crisis with the author John Woodrow Cox, winner of our 2021 Goddard Riverside Stephan Russo Book Prize for Social Justice.
The Book Prizes celebrates the power of the written word to create change in the name of justice for all people—a value shared by the publishing community and Goddard Riverside. Learn more.
About the Books
Pura’s Cuentos: How Pura Belpré Reshaped Libraries with Her Stories by Annette Bay Pimentel and Illustrated by Magaly Morales
Winner of the 2021 Goddard Riverside CBC Youth Book Prize for Social Justice
A lyrical, vibrant tribute to the amazing life and legacy of Pura Belpré, a lauded storyteller, librarian, and pioneer of bilingual storytimes.
Pura’s abuela always has a cuento to share. She crows ¡Qui-qui-ri-quí! for Señor Gallo, booms Borom, Borom for Señor Zapo, and tells of a beautiful cockroach who loves a mouse. Pura clings to these stories like coquíes cling to green leaves. When Pura grows up and moves from Puerto Rico to Harlem, she gets a job at the library, where she is surrounded by stories–but they’re only in English. Where is Señor Gallo? Where is Pérez the mouse? Where is Puerto Rico on these shelves? She decides to tell children the tales of her homeland in English and in Spanish.
Lyrically written, with lively illustrations, Pura’s Cuentos captures the exuberant spirit and passion of Pura Belpré celebrated storyteller, author, folklorist, and the first Latina librarian in New York City. A pioneer of bilingual storytimes, she welcomed countless new families to the library, formed cultural bridges in her community, and broke the rules by telling stories that weren’t printed in books–at least, not yet.
Purchase a copy of Pura’s Cuentos: How Pura Belpré Reshaped Libraries with Her Stories.
Children Under Fire: An American Crisis by John Woodrow Cox
Winner of the 2021 Goddard Riverside Stephan Russo Book Prize for Social Justice
Based on the acclaimed series–a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize–an intimate account of the devastating effects of gun violence on our nation’s children, and a call to action for a new way forward.
In 2017, seven-year-old Ava in South Carolina wrote a letter to Tyshaun, an eight-year-old boy from Washington, DC. She asked him to be her pen pal; Ava thought they could help each other. The kids had a tragic connection–both were traumatized by gun violence. Ava’s best friend had been killed in a campus shooting at her elementary school, and Tyshaun’s father had been shot to death outside of the boy’s elementary school. Ava’s and Tyshaun’s stories are extraordinary, but not unique. In the past decade, 15,000 children have been killed from gunfire, though that number does not account for the kids who weren’t shot and aren’t considered victims but have nevertheless been irreparably harmed by gun violence.
In Children Under Fire, John Woodrow Cox investigates the effectiveness of gun safety reforms as well as efforts to manage children’s trauma in the wake of neighborhood shootings and campus massacres, from Columbine to Marjory Stoneman Douglas. Through deep reporting, Cox addresses how we can effect change now, and help children like Ava and Tyshaun. He explores their stories and more, including a couple in South Carolina whose eleven-year-old son shot himself, a Republican politician fighting for gun safety laws, and the charlatans infiltrating the school safety business.
In a moment when the country is desperate to better understand and address gun violence, Children Under Fire offers a way to do just that, weaving wrenching personal stories into a critical call for the United States to embrace practical reforms that would save thousands of young lives.
Purchase a copy of Children Under Fire: An American Crisis.