Candlewick Press is proud to present the Blue Stars, a middle-grade graphic-novel series cowritten by Kekla Magoon and Cynthia Leitich Smith and illustrated by Molly Murakami in her children’s book debut. The series stars two cousins, Riley Halfmoon and Maya Dawn, who embrace their different strengths to become a superhero duo in their school and in their community.
The first book in the Blue Stars series, Mission One: The Vice Principal Problem, will be published in both hardcover and paperback, as well as an e-book, on March 5th, 2024.
Kekla Magoon is the renowned author of numerous fiction and nonfiction titles for young readers, including Revolution in Our Time: The Black Panther Party’s Promise to the People; X: A Novel, cowritten with Ilyasah Shabazz; How It Went Down; and The Season of Styx Malone. She has received the Margaret A. Edwards Award, the John Steptoe New Talent Award, an NAACP Image Award, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, a Michael L. Printz Honor, and four Coretta Scott King Honors, among other accolades. The Secret Library, a middle grade fantasy adventure, is will be available in Spring 2024. Kekla Magoon lives in Montpelier, Vermont, and teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts. You can find her online at keklamagoon.com.
Cynthia Leitich Smith is an NSK Neustadt Laureate and acclaimed author of Hearts Unbroken, winner of the American Indian Youth Literature Award; Harvest House; Sisters of the Neversea; the New York Times best-selling Tantalize and Feral series; Rain Is Not My Indian Name; and Jingle Dancer, illustrated by Cornelius Van Wright and Ying-Hwa Hu. She also edited the anthology Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids, is the author-curator of Heartdrum, a Native-focused children’s and YA imprint, and served as the inaugural Katherine Paterson Chair at Vermont College of Fine Arts. A Muscogee Nation citizen, Cynthia Leitich Smith lives in Austin, Texas. You can find her online at cynthialeitichsmith.com.
Molly Murakami has been drawing and making comics her whole life, and her work has been featured by Elevate Hockey, Mighty Media Press, and the NHL Network. The Blue Stars series will mark her children’s book debut. Her favorite activities include lounging lakeside in her home state of Minnesota, learning more about the world, and making her friends laugh. Writing and drawing comics can be hard sometimes, but Molly’s superpower is her determination to keep going –– even when times are tough! You can find her online at mollymurakami.com .