2024 Festival:
October 21–27

34: YA Stars: Coming of Ages (Grades 8–12)

34: YA Stars: Coming of Ages (Grades 8–12)

Update: Heather Smith, originally scheduled to join this event, is unfortunately not able to attend.

All 2022 Festival Youth events can be attended in-person or viewed online. Please ensure that you select the correct ticket option during checkout.

These three authors are bound to enthrall high-school students with pressing themes, a vibrant cast of characters, and affirming storylines. Malinda Lo is a National Book Award Winner and a threetime finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. One of the biggest YA writers in North America, her “coming of queer-age” books offer riveting stories about LGBTQ+ youth. Her latest, A Scatter of Light, is set against the backdrop of the first major decisions by the Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage. Benjamin Lefebvre’s first YA novel, In The Key of Dale, is a disarming coming-of-age story about a queer teen music prodigy who discovers pieces of himself in places he never thought to look. Moderated by Tanya Boteju. Grades 8–12.

Event Participants:

Tanya Boteju

TANYA BOTEJU is an English teacher and writer whose debut novel, Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens, was named a Top Ten Indie Next Pick by the American Booksellers Association, and selected for the American Librarian Association 2020 Rainbow List. Her latest YA novel, Bruised, was selected as a Gold Standard book by the Junior Library Guild.

Benjamin Lefebvre

BENJAMIN LEFEBVRE wrote the three-volume critical anthology The L.M. Montgomery Reader (winner of the 2016 PROSE Award for Literature from the Association of American Publishers) and edited an edition of Montgomery’s rediscovered final book, The Blythes Are Quoted. In the Key of Dale is his first novel. (ONTARIO)

Malinda Lo

MALINDA LO is the author of several young adult novels, including most recently Last Night at the Telegraph Club. Her novel Ash, a lesbian retelling of Cinderella, was named a Kirkus Best Book for Children and Teens. She has been a three-time finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. (UNITED STATES)