YOU BRING THE DISTANT NEAR Exclusive Cover Reveal!

Thanks to Bustle for a lovely review and exclusive cover reveal of my forthcoming novel, YOU BRING THE DISTANT NEAR (Macmillan FSG | 9/17).

"Perkins' new YA novel isn't just an exploration of family, but a tracing of its transformation as it crosses oceans and borderlines. 'You Bring the Distant Near' captures the immigrant experience for one Indian-American family with humor and heart. Told in alternating teen voices across three generations, this elegant YA novel explores sisterhood, first loves, friendship, and the inheritance of culture — for better or worse."

A Poem: Four Men at Mule Creek State Prison

Four Men at Mule Creek State Prison


By Mitali Perkins


He puts on his bifocals and opens the family Bible. For two hours, he reads verses of hope to her in quiet Tagalog. A handkerchief, embroidered by hands buried far away, receives her tears.


She sprints across the room at the sight of him. He scoops her up and she kisses his clean-shaven cheek two dozen times. Her beribboned braids hide his tattoo as he bends to long-kiss her mother on the mouth. You’re given two times to touch — one twenty-second hug at first sight and one more before the last. But the Christmas tree is tinseled. A guard chews a microwaved cheeseburger from the vending machine and looks the other way.


His ponytail is graying. Their two chairs sandwich his like white toast on ham. Her ancient eyes memorize the silent features; his father’s are hidden behind one age-spotted hand. Who will be his bread when they are gone?


Our man is an orphan at twenty-two. His mother died in a fire last year, after her thirty-sixth birthday. He asks for a book on how to write cursive. I get out in twenty-thirty-two, he says. Abuela wants me out of Oakland. I'll need a signature of my own.

All Things South Asia Book Award

Just got back from a wonderful trip to D.C., where I accepted the 2016 South Asia Younger Readers Book Award for TIGER BOY. Here's my awkward (but grateful) speech.

 

Gauri Manglik of KITAABWORLD handled book sales brilliantly. If you haven't checked out their marvelous site that provides an easy way to choose books about South Asia, you're missing out.
What a delight to meet Mathangi Subramaniam, winner of the South Asia Book Award for Older readers for Dear Mrs. Naidu.  Watch for her adult novel coming soon. I can't wait.
The Program of Events. Delicious chaat and chai, too.
My beautiful glass engraved plaque.
Author visit with fourth-graders at Capital City Public Charter School.
A thousand thanks to Rachel Weiss of the University of Wisconsin, who serves with passion and dedication as the Award Coordinator, and to the rest of the members of the Selection Committee.