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PEN Out Loud: Reimagining A Wrinkle in Time

Little girls in glasses have showed us how to save the world from darkness for years. The journeys they take as they come into their power showcase their everyday bravery, helping us recognize our own strengths. To mark the release of Ava DuVernay’s bold new adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time, PEN America and the Strand Book Store will celebrate unconventional literary heroes with readings from Madeleine L’Engle’s classic novel and related texts, presenting a canon of unorthodox saviors who invite us to examine the ways we can be heroes too. With award-winning speculative fiction writer Alice Sola Kim; National Book Award-nominated young adult author Ibi Zoboi; and Léna Roy and Charlotte Jones Voiklis, Madeleine L’Engle’s granddaughters and biographers.

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Alice Sola Kim lives in New York. Her fiction has appeared in McSweeney’sTin HouseBuzzFeed ReaderLennyBest American Science Fiction & Fantasy 2017, and other publications. She is a MacDowell Colony fellow, a recipient of a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation, and a winner of a 2016 Whiting Award.

Léna Roy is a creative writing teacher and an author of fiction and creative nonfiction, as well as being Madeleine L’Engle’s granddaughter. She has written a biography of her grandmother, Becoming Madeleine, with her sister, Charlotte Jones Voiklis, coming out in February 2018. Léna is a regional manager for Writopia Lab in the suburbs of New York City. Writopia Lab’s mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing. She is also the author of the YA novel Edges.

Charlotte Jones Voiklis is Madeleine L’Engle’s granddaughter and executor of her estate. She has written a biography, Becoming Madeleine, for middle grade readers with her sister, Léna Roy, coming out in February 2018. She wrote the afterword to the 50th Anniversary edition of A Wrinkle in Time and has also written and spoken of her grandmother’s work to a variety of audiences. With a Ph.D in comparative literature, Charlotte’s work experience includes teaching, fundraising, communications, and grantmaking. She is also a volunteer mediator in the New York City court system.

Ibi Zoboi was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and holds an MFA in writing for children and young adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her writing has been published in The New York Times Book Review, The Horn Book Magazine, and The Rumpus, among others. Her debut novel, American Street, received five starred reviews and made finalist for the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. She now lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their three children. You can find her online at www.ibizoboi.net