The Weekly 411 (10/13/23)


© Moira Ratchford

Oct. 13, 2023 vol. 41

The Weekly 411 gathers all the links added to Kidlit411 each week. To receive this post by email, sign up for our email updatesAre you on Facebook? Join our Kidlit411 group for conversations and camaraderie. This week's illustration is by Moira Ratchford.

Publishing News

SCBWI Scopes out Book Trends

Big Disruption Hit Book Publishing Before AI Showed Up

Middle Grade Giveaway

We are excited to host a giveaway of the middle grade book, Coyote Queen, by Jessica Vitalis (Greenwillow/ HarperCollins), out now! Enter to win a copy via the Rafflecopter below.

art © Dion MBD, designer: Paul Zakris

About the Book: Twelve-year-old Fud enters a local beauty pageant hoping to win the prize money she and her mother need to escape a desperate situation, but an eerie connection to a local pack of coyotes causes strange changes to her body. Her sense of smell improves, she goes colour-blind, and soon, she has to figure out how to win the pageant with a tail. The Benefits of Being an Octopus meets The Nest in this contemporary novel with a magical twist about family, class, and resilience that Newbery honor winner Gary D. Schmidt describes as “a powerful novel of tremendous empathy and optimism.” 


About the Author: JESSICA VITALIS is a Columbia MBA-wielding writer with Greenwillow / HarperCollins. She authored The Wolf’s Curse and The Rabbit’s Gift (which received two starred reviews and was named a Canadian Children’s Book Center Best Books for Kids and Teens 2023). Coyote Queen is a Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection and has already received a Kirkus starred review. A novel in verse, Unsinkable Cayenne, comes out in 2024. Her work has been translated into three languages, and she was named a 2021 Canada Council of the Arts Grant Recipient and featured on CBCs Here and Now and CTVs Your Morning. An American expat, Jessica lives in Ontario with her husband and two daughters but speaks at conferences, festivals, and schools all over North America. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Picture Book Giveaway

We are pleased to host a giveaway of the picture book, Building a Dream: How the Boys of Koh Panyee Became Champions, by Darshana Khiani, illustrated by Dow Phumiruk (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers 2023). Enter to win a copy via the Rafflecopter below!

About the Book: In Thailand’s Phang Nga Bay, atop a network of stilts, floats the village of Koh Panyee—where a group of boys loved soccer but had nowhere to practice. Where could they find space to dribble, juggle, shoot, and score? The boys looked out at the water and started gathering tools. Even while their neighbors laughed, they sawed wood, hammered nails, and tied barrels together. The team worked for weeks to build Koh Panyee’s first floating field—a place to practice, and a place to transform their community. From author Darshana Khiani and illustrator Dow Phumiruk, based on the real-life story.

About the Author: Darshana Khiani is a computer engineer, children’s book author and South Asian kidlit advocate based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her books include How to Wear a Sari (Versify) and I’m an American (Viking). Visit Khiani’s website at and follow her on Twitter @darshanakhiani.


About the Illustrator: Dow Phumiruk is the award-winning illustrator of over a dozen books for young readers, including One Girl (Abrams), Titan and the Wild Boars: The True Cave Rescue of the Thai Soccer Team (HarperCollins) and Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13 (Henry Holt). Born in Krung Thep (Bangkok), Thailand, Phumiruk lives in Colorado, where she also works as a general pediatrician. Follow her on Instagram @dowphumiruk.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

For Writers

Your Novel is Not a Screenplay

What is Theme?

 Writing Courses

with Emily Forney, BookEnds Literary ($25) (Inked Voices)

Nov. 1, 1-2:15pm ET Mentor Text Your Way to Funnier Picture Book Writing with Tara Luebbe (Inked Voices) ($25)


My Path to Nonfiction (AKA When What You Think You Want to Write and What You're Good at Writing is Not the Same Thing)

Inspirational Things

Agented But Not Published


  1. Coyote Queen is a must read for me. The featured picture book is inspirational!

  2. Thanks, Kidlit 411, for keeping us up-to-date on everything kid lit!

  3. I can’t wait to get my hands on this book! Hearing great things!! Thank you for a chance.

  4. I'm a huge fan of Jessica's work. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of her latest book!

  5. Never would've heard about Coyote Queen had it not been for this giveaway. Thanks to kidlit411 for being a vital resource. I'm always referring this site to new writers.

  6. Building a Dream looks to be a lesson in determination and perseverance. Our school just started an International Club, this would be a nice addition/lesson for the group. And I see STEM possibilities as well. Would love a chance to read to my class.

  7. Coyote Dream and Building a Dream have been on my “to read” list for quite some time. I am so excited to read them and share them with my readers. Woo hoo!

  8. I'd love to win a copy of Coyote Dream. As I live in South Australia I get to see very few US books, unless I'm able to get the library to order a copy. Many of them never get to Australia. I'm working on my first middle grade novel and I'm lapping up all the contemporary MG stories I can get hold of.

  9. So excited to read Coyote Queen and share it with kids!

  10. Love Moira's illustration!
    Thanks for highlighting these authors and illustrators.

  11. Another wonderful post. Thanks for the links and the chance to win such terrific books.

  12. Love learning about new books I can read with my students!

  13. WOW Building a Dream sounds like a wonderful story. I love the true ones.

  14. Definitely want to read both of these! My school's readers are crazy about soccer, so I know they'd love Building a Dream.


Post a Comment