Meet the Authors

Megan Frazer Blakemore

Megan Frazer Blakemore is an award-winning author for children and young adults. Megan’s books have been honored with inclusion on state lists, as Junior Library Guild selections, and as best books from Kirkus, Bank Street College, and Amazon.

A librarian, Megan lives in Maine with her husband, children, two cats, a leopard gecko, and (sometimes) a hive of bees.

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Katie Coppens

Katie's writing builds off her background as a middle school science and English teacher. Her chapter book series, The Acadia Files, teaches science through the curiosity of fictional fifth grader Acadia Greene. The Acadia Files: Winter Science was a finalist for the 2020 Maine Literary Award for young people's literature. Coppens also authored, Geology is a Piece of Cake and Geometry is as Easy as Pie, a series that uses cooking to teach science and math. Her newest book, What Do Black Holes Eat For Dinner? And Other Silly, Yet Totally Smart, Questions About Space, is co-authored by Dr. Grant Tremblay.

Katie lives in Maine with her husband and two children.

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Russ Cox

Russ Cox is an illustrator and author. Most recently, he illustrated Lynn Plourde's book, The Boy Whose Face Froze Like That and is also the illustrator for the Freddy the Frog Catcher series. He writes and illustrates picture books, graphic novels, chapter books, and comics.

He lives in Maine with his wife and four cats.

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Betty Culley

Betty Culley’s debut novel-in-verse, Three Things I Know Are True, was a Kids’ Indie Next List Top Ten Pick, an ALA-YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults Nominee, and the 2021 Maine Literary Book Award Winner for Young People’s Literature. Her first middle-grade novel, Down to Earth, is inspired by her fascination with meteorites, voyagers from another place and time. She’s an RN who worked as an obstetrics nurse and as a pediatric home hospice nurse. She lives in central Maine, where the rivers run through the small towns.

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Samara Cole Doyon

Samara Cole Doyon is a second-generation Haitian American living in Maine – a state comprised of unceded Wabanaki territory and claiming half the roots of her family tree. She is a poet and educator, holding a BA in English and a graduate-level teacher training certificate from the University of Southern Maine. She was awarded both a Lupine Award and an International Literacy Association Award for her debut picture book, Magnificent Homespun Brown. She’s also the author of Magic Like That. She lives with her husband, two children, three guinea pigs, and rescue pup in Lewiston.

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Melanie Ellsworth

Melanie Ellsworth writes picture books in lovely mid-coast Maine. As a former ESOL teacher and literacy specialist with a Masters in Language and Literacy, Melanie loves all parts of the writing process, from gathering ideas to revising to sharing books.

Visit Melanie on Twitter (@melanieells), on Instagram (@melaniebellsworth), on her website (link below) or on Facebook (

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Cathryn Falwell

Maine author and illustrator Cathryn Falwell has created more than two dozen children’s picture books including A Space for Me, Feast For 10, Turtle Splash!, Word Wizard, David’s Drawings, and Rainbow Stew. Several of her titles have been distributed to children by their healthcare providers through Maine’s Raising Readers program. In 2015, she received the Katahdin Award for lifetime achievement in children’s literature by the Maine State Library Association.

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Carrie Finison

Carrie Finison is the author of Dozens of Doughnuts, Don't Hug Doug, and Hurry, Little Tortoise. When she’s not writing, Carrie enjoys reading mystery novels, trying new recipes, and curling up on the couch for family movie nights. She lives outside Boston with her husband, son, daughter, and two cats who permit her to write in their cozy attic office.

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Kevin Hawkes

Kevin Hawkes is the author and illustrator of over 50 books, including the NY Times Best seller, Library Lion. He lives in Southern Maine where he enjoys gardening, riding a old bicycle, and exploring the woods and waters of Maine. He is the 2020 recipient of the Katahdin Lifetime Achievement Award, as well as three Lupine Honor Awards. Other awards include a Silver Medal from the Society of Illustrators, Orbis Pictus Honor Book, Horn Book Honor Award, Kate Greenway Medal, and the National Jewish Book Award.

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Alexandra Hinrichs

Alexandra Hinrichs is the award-winning author of Thérèse Makes a Tapestry, The Traveling Camera: Lewis Hine and the Fight to End Child Labor, and I Am Made of Mountains. She works as a middle school librarian in Old Town, Maine, and is the mother of three young sons.

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Jannie Ho

Born in Hong Kong and raised in Philadelphia, Jannie Ho received her BFA in illustration from Parsons School of Design in New York. After graduating, she worked as an in-house graphic designer at Nickelodeon and Scholastic and as an art director at TIME for Kids. Jannie has illustrated numerous board and novelty books, including Hello, My World and TummyTime: Animal Parade, and is the author/illustrator of the picture book Bear and Chicken. Her artwork also appears in toys, stationery, and digital media. Jannie lives with her family near Boston, MA.

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Fran Hodgkins

Fran Hodgkins has written more than 20 books for young readers, mostly non-fiction, many focusing on animals and the natural world. The Secret Galaxy (2014) was a Junior Library Guild selection and part of the "Bank Street Best Books for Children" list. Her most recent publication Do Moose Ever . . . ? is the third in a series about Maine wildlife. She also has written middle grade novels, including Hex: The Apprentice.

Fran lives in Maine with her family and far too many pets.

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Jennifer Richard Jacobson

Jennifer, a graduate of Harvard Graduate School of Education, is the author of over a dozen award-winning children’s books including Small as an Elephant (Parents’ Choice Gold Award), Paper Things (ILA Social Justice Award) and The Dollar Kids illustrated by Ryan Andrews ( Bank Street Best Book of the Year). Her newest launches are a picture book: This is My Room (No Tigers Allowed), a chapter book series: Twig and Turtle: Big Move to a Tiny House, and a middle grade romance: Crashing in Love, released in October 2021. She lives in Woolwich with her husband and Jack Russell Terrier.

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David A. Kelly

David A. Kelly is the author of dozens of children’s books, including the popular chapter book series, the Ballpark Mysteries, which have sold over a million copies. In the Ballpark Mysteries, cousins Kate and Mike travel to Major League ballparks across the country watching games and solving mysteries. He is also the author of the early reader, Babe Ruth and the Baseball Curse and the picture book Miracle Mud: Lena Blackburne and Secret Mud that Changed Baseball, and MVP sports chapter book series.

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Jarrett Lerner

Jarrett Lerner is the author of EngiNerds, Revenge of the EngiNerds, The EngiNerds Strike Back, Geeger the Robot Goes to School, and Geeger the Robot: Lost and Found, as well as the author-illustrator of the activity books Give This Book a Title and Give This Book a Cover. Jarrett is also the author-illustrator of the forthcoming Hunger Heroes graphic novel series and the forthcoming illustrated novel in verse A Work in Progress (all published by Simon & Schuster/Aladdin). He cofounded and helps run the MG Book Village, an online hub for all things Middle Grade, and is the co-organizer of the #KidsNeedBooks and #KidsNeedMentors projects. He lives with his family in Medford, Massachusetts.

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Cynthia Lord

Cynthia Lord is the award-winning author of Rules, a Newbery Honor and Schneider Family Book Award winner, as well as the critically acclaimed Touch Blue. She made her picture book debut with Hot Rod Hamster, which won several awards including the Parents' Choice Award, and followed it with the beloved sequel Happy Birthday, Hamster. Her latest book, Ivy Lost and Found, is part of the new Book Buddies early reader series. She lives in Maine with her family.

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Diane Magras

Diane Magras is the award-winning author of the New York Times Editors’ Choice The Mad Wolf’s Daughter, as well as its companion novel, The Hunt for the Mad Wolf’s Daughter. She grew up on Mount Desert Island in Maine, whose woods, cliffs, and ocean seem to always make it into her writing. She's also a bit obsessed with castles, Scotland, and tea. Her next book, Secrets of the Shadow Beasts, a fantasy set in a whole new world, was released in June 2022.

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Meadow Rue Merrill

Meadow Rue Merrill has been making up stories for as long as she can remember. After many years as a journalist writing true-life stories about local people and places, she now writes fiction for children, including the Lantern Hill Farm picture book series, celebrating the holidays in a way that builds children's faith.

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Maria Padian

Maria Padian has worked as a news reporter, an essayist for public radio, a press secretary for a U.S. Congressman and a freelance journalist. Her award-winning novels for young adults focus on real-life issues facing contemporary teens. A graduate of Middlebury College and the University of Virginia, she lives in Brunswick, Maine with her family.

Maria's work in broadcast journalism has been awarded by the Associated Press and the Sigma Delta Chi Association of Professional Journalists. She is a three-time winner of the Maine Literary Award, a three-time recipient of the Maine Lupine Award. In addition to being included in numerous state book award lists, her novels have been noted as "Best Books" by the American Library Association, Kirkus, Bank Street College and Capitol Choices Noteworthy Books for Teens.

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Rodman Philbrick

Rodman Philbrick began writing in 6th grade. His first published works were detective and mystery novels. In 1993 he published Freak the Mighty, his first book for young readers, and began a career writing for middle schoolers.

At last year's Book Bash he was honored with the Katadhin Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Lynn Plourde

Lynn Plourde ( is the author of 29 picture books, most recently If You Were My Valentine (2022) and The Man Who Saved Books (2022). A former speech-language therapist, she worked in public schools for twenty-one years. She was born and raised in Maine, where she still lives, and she loves spending time outdoors snowshoeing, walking, kayaking, and gardening.

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Dan Poblocki

Dan Poblocki is the author of many books for young people, including Ghost Hunter’s Daughter, The Ghost of Graylock, The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe, The House on Stone’s Throw Island, The Book of Bad Things, the Shadow House series, Liars’ Room, and Tales to Keep You Up at Night. His stories have thrilled and chilled readers all over the world. In the U.S., they have won several state reading awards, have been named to the Best Books for Young Adults list by the ALA, and have been honored by the Junior Library Guild. Dan lives in Saugerties, New York in an old house where he tries very hard to ignore the things that go bump in the night.

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Anna Crowley Redding

Anna Crowley Redding is the author of Google It, Elon Musk: A Mission to Save the World, and Black Hole Chasers. The recipient of multiple Edward R. Murrow and Associated Press awards, Crowley Redding uses her Emmy award-winning investigative reporting skills to dig into compelling topics that are shaping our world. Her works have been translated into multiple languages, garnered national news coverage, and been recognized by the National Association of Science Teachers for excellence. Her latest book, Courage Like Kate: The True Story of a Girl Lighthouse Keeper, was co-authored with Emily Sutton.

Crowley Redding lives outside of Portland, Maine with her family.

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Wendy Ulmer

Wendy Ulmer is a former public-school music and English teacher. Prior to teaching, she was a Registered Music Therapist, working in both clinical and public school settings.

She is the author of eight books for children, including The Journals of Anterg, inspired by the village in Pennsylvania where she grew up. Today Wendy lives on Arrowsic Island, near Bath, where she can be found combing the beach for treasures or roaming through the woods looking for dragons.

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Chris Van Dusen

Chris Van Dusen is an author/illustrator of children’s picture books. He’s written and illustrated several books, including The Circus Ship, the Mr. Magee series, and the If I Built books. He also illustrated the Mercy Watson books for author Kate DiCamillo. His latest picture book, Big Truck, Little Island, was published in May 2022, and is the 11th book he has written and illustrated. Chris and his wife Lori live in Camden, Maine.

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