Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Celia C. Perez  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Audience: Young Adult;

Born: in Miami, Florida

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Illinois Connection

Perez lives in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Celia Perez is a community college librarian. She is a longtime zine-maker. Her zines and writing has been featured in The Horn Book Magazine, Latina, El Andar, Venus Zine, and NPR's Talk of the Nation and Along for the Ride.


'The First Rule of Punk '

Best Books List, NPR, 2017

Best Books List, Center for the Study of Multicultural Children's Literature, 2017

Best Middle-Grade Books, Kirkus Reviews, 2017

Best Books for Kids, New York Public Library, 2017

101 Great Books for Kids List, Evanston Public Library, 2017

Best of the Best Books, Chicago Public Library, 2017

Best Books List for Young Readers, University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education, 2017

Middle Grade Fiction Nerdies Award, 2017

Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, 2017

Starred Review, Kirkus, 2017

Starred Review, School Library Journal, 2017

Indies Introduce Title, ABA, 2017

Junior Library Guild Selection, 2017

ABA Indies Introduce Title, 2017

Kids’ Indie Next List Pick

E.B. White Read-Aloud Middle Reader Award finalist

Amelia Bloomer List Book

Junior Library Guild Selection

Publishers Weekly Flying Start

School Library Journal Best Books of 2017

Horn Book Fanfare Selection

Seattle Public Library Top 10 Children’s Chapter Book of 2017

Pura Belpré Author Honor Book, 2018

ALSC Notable Children’s Book, 2018

Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award Winner, 2018

Boston Globe-Horn Book Fiction and Poetry Honor Book, 2018

CCBC Choices, 2018

Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year, 2018

Great Lakes, Great Reads Award, 2018

Illinois READS Selection, Illinois Reading Council, 2019

Strange Birds

Notable Children’s Books, ALSC, 2020

Best Children’s Books of the Year, Bank Street College of Education, 2020 Edition

Rise: A Feminist Book Project List 2020 (formerly the Amelia Bloomer List)

Cooperative Children’s Book Center Choices 2020

Best Books of the Year, Center for the Study of Multicultural Children’s Literature, 2019

Best of the Best Books,Chicago Public Library, 2019

Best Middle Grade Books of the Year, Kirkus, 2019

Best Children’s Books of the Year, The Washington Post, 2019

Junior Library Guild Selection

Starred Review, Kirkus, 2019

Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, 2019

Starred Review, School Library Journal, 2019

Starred Review, Horn Book, 2019

Illinois READS Book Selection, Illinois Reading Council, 2020

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes) Publicist: Kaitlin Kneafsey at Penguin Young Readers Email: Literary Agent: Stefanie Von Borstel at Full Circle Literary

Selected Titles At Your Library

Strange birds :
ISBN: 0425290433. OCLC Number: 1078878955

. .

After Ofelia, Aster, Cat, and Lane fail to persuade a local girls club to change an outdated tradition, they form an alternative group that shakes up their sleepy Florida town. Includes tips for beginning birders, characteristics of crystals, a cookie recipe, tips for aspiring journalists, directions for creating badges, and facts about the killing of birds for fashion.

The First Rule of Punk
ISBN: 9780425290422. OCLC Number: 965127991

. .

Twelve-year-old María Luisa O'Neill-Morales (who really prefers to be called Malú) reluctantly moves with her Mexican-American mother to Chicago and starts seventh grade with a bang--violating the dress code with her punk rock aesthetic and spurning the middle school's most popular girl in favor of starting a band with a group of like-minded weirdos.