Author Talk with Cynthia Leitich Smith

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Streams on Wednesday, November 22, 2023 at 8pm ET | 5pm PT! (Originally aired in January of 2022).

Program Description:

PBS Books, in partnership with the American Indian Library Association, is pleased to interview trailblazer Cynthia Leitich Smith, author of “Sisters of the Neversea” and editor of “Ancestors Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids”.

A prolific and award-winning author, Cynthia will share insights into her writing process, her latest works, and her creative inspiration. Not only an author, Cynthia is also the first curator of the recently launched Heartdrum, a Native-focused imprint of Harper Collins. She’ll discuss her role as well.

"Ancestor Approved" Book Cover

About the Author:

Cynthia Leitich Smith is the bestselling, acclaimed author of books for all ages, including Rain Is Not My Indian NameIndian ShoesJingle Dancer, and Hearts Unbroken, which won the American Indian Library Association’s Youth Literature Award. She is also the anthologist of Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids.

Cynthia Leitich Smith - Headshot

She was named a NSK Neustadt Laureate, which honors outstanding achievement in the world of children’s and young adult literature. Cynthia is the author-curator of Heartdrum, a Native-focused imprint at HarperCollins Children’s Books, and serves as the Katherine Paterson Inaugural Endowed Chair on the faculty of the MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is a citizen of the Muscogee Nation and lives in Austin, Texas. You can visit Cynthia online at

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