Cynthia Kadohata

Talking with 'Kira-Kira' Medalist Cynthia Kadohata | The Newbery at 100

Kadohata reflects on winning the Newbery, writing longhand, and how her work has enriched her connection to her Japanese American parents and their experience. Cynthia Kadohata is the author of 10 books for young readers that encompass a remarkably wide variety of topics, settings, cultures, and time periods. Whether she’s exploring the aftermath of the Japanese American incarceration during World War II, contemporary wheat threshing in the Midwest, or the love of an animal companion, all her works are anchored by a sense of heartfelt authenticity as characters navigate complex emotions and situations. Her reflective storytelling deftly balances darkness with light and consistently affirms the importance of family and connection. She was awarded the 2005 Newbery Medal for Kira-Kira, and her latest novel for young readers, Saucy (both Atheneum), was published in 2020.
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