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Elizabeth Acevedo’s Work Is a Welcome Rarity in Young-Adult Fiction | The Atlantic

The National Book Award–winning author writes complex teenage protagonists whose real-life counterparts have long faced literary erasure. The night...

The National Book Award–winning author writes complex teenage protagonists whose real-life counterparts have long faced literary erasure.

The night that Elizabeth Acevedo’s debut novel won the 2018 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, the author celebrated by retreating into a familiar comfort. She headed straight uptown to her mother’s apartment that crisp November evening and treated herself to the aromatic meal that had been a hallmark of her New York City upbringing. “It was like midnight at that point. And I ate a bowl of sancocho while [my family] passed around the award and took pictures,” she said when we spoke recently. Pointing to an imaginary serving of the traditional, meat-and-vegetable-heavy stew her family eats in Harlem and on each trip back to her parents’ native Dominican Republic, she added: “I was like, ‘This is winning.’”

[Featured Image: MAKEBA RAINEY / STEPHANIE IFENDU]

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Written by Hannah Giorgis
Hannah Giorgis is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where she covers culture. [The Wriit-created profile was established to offer the proper attribution & credit for the featured Writer. The profile was created by Wriit and does not reflect the Writer’s association with the publication, and may be updated (claimed) by the Writer upon request.] Profile

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