An award-winning children’s book author from here in Southwest Michigan visited St. Joseph’s Forever Books on Friday.
Forever Books, 312 State Street, St. Joseph, hosted a book signing for author Kelly J Baptist. Baptist was able to highlight his latest book, “Isaiah Dunn Saves The Day.” Baptist spent the evening signing books and mingling with readers.
Kelly Baptist is the winner of the 2015 We Need Diverse Books short story competition with The Beans and Rice Chronicles of Isaiah Dunn, which is included in the mid-level anthology, Flying Lessons and Other Stories. As a result of her work in an urban school district, Kelly felt compelled to continue Isaiah’s story with Isaiah Dunn Is My Hero and Isaiah Dunn Saves The Day. Kelly has also written a picture book, The Electric Slide and Kai, and a mid-level novel, The Swag Is In The Socks.
Kelly says she has enjoyed writing all her life as she grew up in Berrien Springs, and now works as a social and emotional learning interventionist for Benton Harbor Public Schools. She takes care of her five children, who always give her lots of story ideas and background noise to write about.
Who does Baptiste hope to reach with her books? “Any child who needs to be seen, children who are passionate about something and who want to achieve their dreams. Children who need family and support. All children who want to be heard, I hope to reach them.
Timettas Wilson said she decided to come out and show her support because “I’ve read Isaiah Dunn Is My Hero and it’s a great book. I enjoyed that and also The Electric Slide which she read on a webinar, and I’m in love with her writing. I even sent one of his books to my grandchildren to read Isaiah Dunn Is My Hero.
“I’m always ready to support black-owned businesses and Kelly is an amazing black author that we really want to celebrate,” said Karmen Wimberley who attended the book signing at Forever Books.
For more upcoming events and book signings, visit https://www.foreverbooks.net/event
and to learn more about Kelly Baptist, visit https://www.kellyiswrite.com.
By Nicholas Gunn, MOTM Contributor