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Young Adult Novel Selected to Represent Alabama at the National Book Festival


The Alabama Center for the Book has selected the young adult novel Make It Work by Birmingham author Chandra Sparks Splond to represent Alabama at the 2017 Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington DC, Sept. 2, 2017. The festival will be held in the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

The book is the state’s selection for the national “Discover Great Places through Reading” brochure. The brochure lists children or young adult books from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  The brochure will be distributed in the Pavilion of the States area at the book festival.  The list maybe also found on the National Book Festival website.

Splond is an editor, speaker, award-winning author and blogger. Her young adult novel Spin It Like That was chosen as a Popular Paperback for Young Adults by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). Her book The Pledge was a YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers.

“It is such an honor for my young adult novel Make It Work to be selected to represent the state of Alabama. I am both excited and humbled by this opportunity, and I hope it will result in more kids getting excited about reading,” said Splond.

Splond is a graduate of The University of Alabama with a degree in journalism.

The National Book Festival will feature presentations by award-winning authors, poets and illustrators. Festival attendees can listen to their favorite authors, attend book signings and participate in many literary activities during the day-long event.

The Alabama Center for the Book is housed in the University Libraries at The University of Alabama. The Center supports reading, literacy and other book-related activities in Alabama as well as promotes appreciation of regional writers. The Center is a founding co-sponsor of the Alabama Writers Hall of Fame and participates in the Letters About Literature reading and writing contest.

Letters About Literature 2017 Ceremony

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama Center for the Book hosted the 2017 Letters About Literature Award Ceremony Saturday, April 29, in the Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library at The University of Alabama.  State winners, semi-finalists, families and teachers attended the ceremony.

Birmingham editor, speaker, award-winning author and blogger Chandra Sparks Splond was the guest speaker.

Student winners in each of the three levels received cash prizes. The first place winner in each level also competed at the national level. All students received a certificate.

A reception and book signing was held after the ceremony.

Letters About Literature is a reading and writing contest for students in grades 4-12. Students are asked to read a book, poem or speech and write to the author (living or dead) about how the work affected them personally. Letters are judged on state and national levels.

To learn more about the contest and how to enter, visit the Letters About Literature website at the Library of Congress.