The Great Big Beautiful Podcast, Episode 161: Mariko Tamaki
Today, we’re spending the day at Miss Qiunzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for Hardcore Lady Types. That’s right, it’s Friendship to the Max as we chat with Mariko Tamaki about her new middle grade book Lumberjanes: Unicorn Power! (Abrams/Amulet), which also sets up a brand-new series of books based on the graphic novels from Boom! Studios.
Tamaki is certainly no stranger to the world of graphic novels, having written Skim and This One Summer (both illustrated by Jillian Tamaki). This One Summer caused waves a couple years ago when it was awarded both a Caldecott Honor and a Printz Honor (for excellence in literature written for young adults). It was the first graphic novel to be recognized with a Caldecott and only the second to snag a Printz. (I actually chatted with both cousins when they first won the Caldecott.)
On this episode, we talk about writing Lumberjanes in a new format, writing what you don’t know, growing up in a mixed-heritage household, queer representation in graphic novels and literature, and whether having the most banned book in the country is a badge of honor or not.