Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Gayle Rosengren  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Audience: Young Adult; Children;


-- Website --
-- Gayle Rosengren on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Rosengren grew up in Chicago. She attended Knox College in Galesburg and was a Young Adult Librarian at the Fountaindale Library in Bolingbrook.

Biographical and Professional Information

Gayle Rosengren grew up in Chicago and attended Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, where she majored in Creative Writing and was the editor of the college's literary magazine. She worked as a children's and young adult librarian at Fountaindale Library in Bolingbrook for several years in the late 1980s and early 1990s.She has worked at American Girl in the reference library and later as a copyeditor. During this time period she published short stories for children in ''Cricket'', ''Ladybug'', ''Jack and Jill'' and ''Children's Digest'' magazines.Rosengren now writes full-time in her home just outside of Madison, Wisconsin. She hopes to make the same difference in children's lives as her favorite books and authors made in hers. ''What the Moon Said'' is her first novel.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

What the Moon Said
ISBN: 0399163522

G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers. 2014

Fans of the Little House books will fall in love with Esther.

Thanks to her superstitious mother, Esther knows some tricks for avoiding bad luck: toss salt over your left shoulder, never button your shirt crooked, and avoid black cats. But even luck can't keep her family safe from the Great Depression. When Pa loses his job, Esther's family leaves their comfy Chicago life behind for a farm in Wisconsin.

Living on a farm comes with lots of hard work, but that means there are plenty of opportunities for Esther to show her mother how helpful she can be. She loves all of the farm animals (except the mean geese) and even better makes a fast friend in lively Bethany. But then Ma sees a sign that Esther just knows is wrong. If believing a superstition makes you miserable, how can that be good luck?

Debut author Gayle Rosengren brings the past to life in this extraordinary, hopeful story.

Cold War on Maplewood Street
ISBN: 0399171835

G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers. 2015

Cold War anxieties play out in a sensitively told story set during the Cuban missile crisis in the 1960s, perfect for fans of Gary Schmidt and Kristin Levine.

Joanna can’t get over how her brother broke his promise to never leave like their dad did. Sam is thousands of miles away on a navy ship, and no matter how often he sends letters, Joanna refuses to write back. When she makes a promise, she keeps it.

But then President Kennedy comes on TV with frightening news about Soviet missiles in Cuba—and that’s where Sam’s heading. Suddenly Joanna’s worries about being home alone, building up the courage to talk to a cute boy, and not being allowed to go to the first boy-girl party in her grade don’t seem so important. Maybe sometimes there are good reasons to break a promise.

The tense timeline of the Cuban missile crisis unfolds alongside a powerful, and ultimately hopeful, story about what it means to grow up in a world full of uncertainty.


What the Moon Said

  • Junior Library Guild Selection 2014
  • 2015 ILLINOIS READS Book

    Speaking Engagements

    Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)

    Rosengren likes to speak to 3rd - 7th grade classes about topics related to ''What the Moon Said'', either in person or via Skype. She also enjoys sharing her journey as a writer and/or discussing the following topics

  • Life during the Great Depression
  • The True, the Nearly True, and the Totally Made Up - Writing Stories from Real Life
  • Superstitions Where They Come From