About

Photo Credit: Laura Kinser

Yamile Saied Mendez

Yamile (sha-MEE-lay) Saied Méndez  is the author of many books for young readers and adults, including Furia, a Reese’s YA Book Club selection and the 2021 Inaugural Pura Belpré Young Adult Gold Medalist. Her books have received many accolades such as the Junior Library Guild Gold Standard, Whitney Award, Cybils Award, Américas Award, Bank Street Spanish Language Book Awards, among others.

They have also been featured in the Best of Year lists of the New York City Public Library Library, Salt Lake Public Library Library, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly and those of many states’.

She was born and raised in Rosario, Argentina, but has lived most of her life in a lovely valley surrounded by mountains in Utah. An inaugural Walter Dean Myers Grant recipient, she’s also a graduate of Voices of Our Nations (VONA) and the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA Writing for Children’s and Young Adult program. Yamile is also a founding member of Las Musas, the first collective of women and nonbinary Latine authors. She taught herself English with a Spanish/English dictionary, and now has been faculty at TinHouse Workshop and a keynote speaker at The Vermont College of Fine Arts.

How do I pronounce my name? Click on this clip from Teaching Books