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Words & Pictures

Jewell Parker Rhodes


“Only the living can make the world better. Live and make it better.”


Jewell Parker Rhodes has always loved reading and writing stories. Born and raised in Manchester, a largely African-American neighborhood on the North Side of Pittsburgh, she was a voracious reader as a child. She began college as a dance major, but when she discovered there were novels by African Americans, for African Americans, she knew she wanted to be an author. She wrote six novels for adults, two writing guides, and a memoir, but writing for children remained her dream.

Now Jewell has published five children’s books: the Louisiana Girls Trilogy (Ninth WardSugar, and Bayou Magic), Towers Falling, and most recently the New York Times bestseller and #1 Kids’ Indie Next Pick Ghost Boys.

Jewell has received numerous honors including: the American Book Award, the National Endowment of the Arts Award in Fiction, the Black Caucus of the American Library Award for Literary Excellence, the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Award for Outstanding Writing, and most recently the Walter Dean Myers Award for​ ​Younger​ ​Readers.

“Rhodes captures the all-too-real pain of racial injustice and provides an important window for readers who are just beginning to explore the ideas of privilege and implicit bias.”

School Library Journal, starred review of Ghost Boys

Book Signing

A book signing will follow the program in the Children’s Department of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Books will be available for sale before and after the lecture from City of Asylum Bookstore.


Media Sponsor


Ghost Boys book cover


Sunday, October 6, 2019 at 2:30 p.m.


Free RADical Days event!
Tickets may also be reserved via phone (412.622.8866) or at the door from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. on the day of the event.


Carnegie Library Lecture Hall
4400 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, 15213


Upcoming Lectures

Liann Tsoukas and Rob Ruck

JUN 20

Colm Toibin

SEP 16

Pico Iyer

SEP 30

Heather Cox Richardson

OCT 28