Boston Book Festival 2020 Boston Book Festival 2020

Story Time: I Am Every Good Thing

- EDT
Crowdcast 5
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Derrick Barnes
I Am Every Good Thing

Derrick Barnes wrote the New York Times bestseller The King of Kindergarten, as well as Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut (illustrated by Gordon James), which received a Newbery Honor, a Coretta Scott King Author Honor, the 2018 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award, and the 2018 Kirkus Prize for Young Readers. He also wrote the bestselling chapter book series Ruby and the Booker Boys. He owns the copy-writing company Say Word Creative Communications and created the popular blog Raising the Mighty, where he "chronicles the experience of bringing up four beautiful Black boys in America." His newest, also with Gordon James, I Am Every Good Thing, is a “powerful celebration of Black boyhood, countering many of the negative messages that a racist society puts forth about African American boys” (Booklist, starred review) and also received starred reviews from Kirkus, the Horn Book, and School Library Journal.

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Gordon C. James
I Am Every Good Thing

Gordon C. James illustrated the critically acclaimed picture book Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut (by Derrick Barnes), which received a Caldecott Honor, a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor, an Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Honor, the 2018 Kirkus Prize for Young Readers, and a Society of Illustrators Gold Medal. His latest, I Am Every Good Thing, also with Derrick Barnes, is a “powerful celebration of Black boyhood, countering many of the negative messages that a racist society puts forth about African American boys” (Booklist, starred review) and has received starred reviews from Kirkus, Horn Book, and School Library Journal.

Buy I Am Every Good Thing

Philecia Harris has been a children's librarian, school library media specialist, library manager, and library director in Cambridge, Boston, and Washington, DC.  Also an entrepreneur, she opened Coffy Cafe, a coffee shop in the District of Columbia that specializes in community events and conversations. Harris is currently the Editor in Chief of theBlackDirectory.com, a new online and soon to be print directory of black businesses and organizations in the Boston area and beyond. Pleased to be back in Boston, Harris is engaged in her first love as the children's librarian for the new Roxbury (formerly Dudley) Branch of the Boston Public Library.


Author Derrick Barnes and artist Gordon James previously teamed up on the critically acclaimed picture book Crown: Ode to the Fresh Cut, which received the Coretta Scott King Award and Caldecott and Newbery Honors. Now the duo have teamed up again on I Am Every Good Thing, a celebration of Black excellence and, according to a starred Kirkus review, a book “brimming with imagination and Black-boy joy.” James’s vibrant paintings powerfully echo messages of confidence and pride: “I am worthy of success / of respect, of safety, of kindness, of happiness.” Barnes and James will read from their book, offer insights into its creation, and participate in a brief Q&A with the Boston Public Library’s Philecia Harris. Tune in live for your chance to ask questions and interact with the book’s creators!

Ages 4–8