Margarita Engle is the Young People’s Poet Laureate Emiretus, the winner of the 2019 NSK Neustadt International Prize, and a 2019 Astrid Lindgren Award nominee.
She is the Cuban-American author of many verse novels, including The Surrender Tree, a Newbery Honor winner, and The Lightning Dreamer, a PEN USA Award recipient. Drum Dream Girl received the Charlotte Zolotow Award for best picture book text. Other awards include multiple Pura Belpré Awards, Américas Awards, the Jane Addams Award, Golden Kite Award, Walter Dean Myers Honors, Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award, Arnold Adoff Poetry Award, and Green Earth Book Awards, among others.
Soaring Earth, released in February, 2019 is the sequel to her verse memoir, Enchanted Air, which won numerous awards. Her next picture book is Dancing Hands, When Teresa Carreño Played the Piano for President Lincoln (illustrated by Rafael López, Fall 2019). Other upcoming work includes Dreams From Many Rivers (October, Holt) and With a Star in His Hand, Rubén Darío, Poetry Hero (February, Atheneum).
Margarita was born in Los Angeles, but developed a deep attachment to her mother’s homeland during childhood summers with relatives on the island. She studied agronomy and botany along with creative writing. She lives in central California with her husband and his wilderness search and rescue dogs.
MARGARITA'S UPCOMING BOOK: DANCING HANDS How Teresa Carreño Played the Piano for President Lincoln
As a little girl, Teresa Carreño loved to let her hands dance across the beautiful keys of the piano. If she felt sad, music cheered her up, and when she was happy, the piano helped her share that joy. Soon she was writing her own songs and performing in grand cathedrals. Then a revolution in Venezuela forced her family to flee to the United States. Teresa felt lonely in this unfamiliar place, where few of the people she met spoke Spanish. Worst of all, there was fighting in her new home, too—the Civil War.
Still, Teresa kept playing, and soon she grew famous as the talented Piano Girl who could play anything from a folk song to a sonata. So famous, in fact, that President Abraham Lincoln wanted her to play at the White House! Yet with the country torn apart by war, could Teresa’s music bring comfort to those who needed it most?
This book will be published in August 2019
More information available through Atheneum Books for Young Readers