- US Edition
Sylvia And Aki
A fictionalized re-telling of an extraordinary story from the past. Two girls meet briefly in the very different world of 1940's California - and a landmark lawsuit will change the education of children forever.
Based on actual events, this is the fascinating and uplifting story of two very different girls, whose lives briefly intersected in 1940’s California.
Sylvia was Hispanic. Aki was Japanese. Both families became caught up in the turmoil of war, and the changing nature of society. Sylvia was barred from a local school and a decent education – the victim of nothing more than her heritage and the colour of her skin. Aki’s family found itself in an internment camp, deprived of liberty in the country they thought was their home.
The two girls’ stories could hardly be more different – and yet they both faced injustice and hardship, sharing in the pain of their families.
When Sylvia’s father decided to take action and begin a fight for justice, he could not have anticipated the importance of the outcome: a landmark lawsuit that would help to shift attitudes about the education of children. And as events played out, the lives of these two young girls were destined to meet for just a few short moments . . .
World: Tricycle Press (Random House); Summer 2011
Americas Award for Children’s & Young Adult Literature, 2012 Commended Title
The Américas Award is given in recognition of books that authentically and engagingly portray Latin America, the Caribbean, or Latinos in the United States.
2012 Tomas Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award
Honors authors and illustrators who create literature that depicts the Mexican American experience
CCBC Choices 2012
Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC) best-of-the-year book choice
Jane Addams Children’s Book Award – WINNER
Winner of the 2012 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award for Older Childrenhttp://www.janeaddamspeace.org/jacba/2012ceremony.shtml
Winifred Conkling studied journalism in college and later worked as a writer and editor at various newspapers and magazines. She has written more than 30 non-fiction books for grown-ups and a number of highly regarded non-fiction books for young people, including SYLVIA AND AKI (covering a lesser-known story of educational segregation), PASSENGER ON THE PEARL (a story of slavery), RADIOACTIVE! (about female scientific pioneers), and VOTES FOR WOMEN (the story of female emancipation in the USA).
She has loved writing since third grade when she taught herself to type, and she went on to become a journalist and author of adult non-fiction books, rediscovering her love of children’s books when she became a mother. She has also taught reading to inmates at a maximum-security prison, run a marathon, spent the night in a dung hut with Samburu warriors, and volunteered with Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta, India.
She lives in Northern Virginia and has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of the Fine Arts.
Visit her website at winifredconkling.com.