Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Patricia Hruby Powell  

Pen Name: None


Audience: Young Adult; Children;

Born: in Arlington Heights, Illinois

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Illinois Connection

Powell was born and raised in Arlington Heights. She currently resides in Champaign.

Biographical and Professional Information

Patricia Hruby Powell is an author, storyteller and dancer. She has graduated from London School of Contemporary Dance, University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign with a BFA in Dance, Temple University in Philadelphia with a MFA in Dance and the University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign with a MS in Library and Information Science. As a dancer/choreographer, Powell worked in London, Winnipeg, and New York City. She has also traveled over North and South America, Europe and the Caribbean with her own dance company ONE PLUS ONE. Powell uses her dance experience to accentuate her presentations and storytelling along with worldwide percussion instruments and animal sounds. She has also worked as a lithographer (printing from large stone slabs), trapeze artist, ballet teacher, modern dance teacher, composition teacher, mime and a substitute librarian. Her first book, ''Blossom Tales: Flower Stories of Many Folk'', is a beautifully illustrated collection of fourteen retold folktales from around the world, each one about a flower. Her books, ''Zinnia'' and ''Frog Brings Rain'', are bilingual Navajo/English picture books.


'Frog Brings Rain ' Spur Storyteller Finalist Award, 2007 Aesop Accolade Award, American Folklore Society, 2006 'Zinnia ' Land of Enchantment Book, 2006-07 'Josephine ' NPR Best Books of the Year List, 2014 Boston Globe Horn Book Nonfiction Honor, 2014 Parents Choice Gold Award for Poetry, 2014 International Bologna/Ragazzi Nonfiction Honor, 2014 Junior Library Guild Selection, 2014 Huffington Post Best Picture Book of the Year Biography (artist), 2014 Wall Street Journals 10 Best Childrens Books of the Year List, 2014 Best Picture Books of 2014 Adventures in Learning PBS Parents New York Public Library Best Childrens Books, 2014 Horn Book Fanfare Best, 2014 Book Page Best Childrens Books, 2014 GoodReads Choice Awards, Picture Book Finalist, 2014 School Library Journal List of Best Books of 2014 Nonfiction Blue Ribbon Books 2014 Bulletin for the Center of Childrens Books Chicago Public Library Best Books for Older Readers (older kids), 2014 100 Magnificent Childrens Books, 2014 Nerdy Book Club Nonfiction, 2014 Center for the Study of Multicultural Childrens Literatures Best Multicultural Books of 2014 BuzzFeed Best Books 2014 Amazon Editors Choice Best Book of the Month for Readers 6-8 January 2014 Daily Candy Product of the Month February 2014 School Library Journal Pick of the Day February 26, 2014 Follett School Solutions Title EZ subscription program Starred Review, May 2014 ABC Best Books for Children Catalog, 2014 A White Raven 2014 Book The Association of Childrens Librarians of Northern California 2014 Distinguished Books Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor, 2015 Robert F. Sibert Honor Book, 2015 National Education Association (NEA) Read Across America Calendar, January 2015 CCBC Choices 2015, Best-of-the-year list Biography New York City Reads 365 for 2016 Grade 5 2016 ILLINOIS READS Book William Allen White Childrens Book Awards Master List Kansas State Book Award, 2016-2017 ALA Notable Childrens Books for All Ages Best Books Childrens Wall Street Journal 25 Contemporary Picture Books to Help Parents, Teachers, and Kids Talk About Diversity - BuzzFeed 45 Books to teach Children About Black History The Culture Publishers Weekly, Starred Review School Library Journal, Starred Review Kirkus, Starred Review Shelf Awareness for Readers, Starred Review

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Selected Titles At Your Library

Blossom tales :
ISBN: 0967792983. OCLC Number: 47965386

Moon Mountain Pub.,. .

A collection of fourteen folk tales about flowers from many different cultures.

Cháł tó yinílo' =
ISBN: 1893354083. OCLC Number: 58526343

Salina Bookshelf,. .

As fire creeps toward the village of the First People, First Man and First Woman must find a way to quench the flames. First Woman asks the Bird People, the River People, and the Water People for assistance, but everyone she speaks to has an excuse. Not me, said Mockingbird. The smoke would hurt my voice and I would never sing again. Not me, said Snail. I carry my house with me and I am slow. No, said Beaver. We would like to help, but our river home would become a desert if we changed the flow of water. At last, First Woman asks the mysterious Frog for help. Will he be able to stop the flames before they reach the village? Author Patricia Hruby Powell's retelling of this Navajo folktale is as graceful as it is compelling, and as magical as the mythical time it describes. Enter the village of the First People and become a part of the time when the world was new.

Josephine :
ISBN: 9781452103143. OCLC Number: 808627968

. .

A portrait of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate Josephine Baker, the woman who worked her way from the slums of St. Louis to the grandest stages in the world. Meticulously researched by both author and artist, Josephine's powerful story of struggle and triumph is an inspiration and a spectacle, just like the legend herself.

Loving vs. Virginia :
ISBN: 9781452153315. OCLC Number: 971130472

. .

Written in blank verse, the story of Mildred Loving, an African American girl, and Richard Loving, a Caucasian boy, who challenge the Viriginia law forbidding interracial marriages in the 1950s.

Loving vs. Virginia :
ISBN: 1452125902. OCLC Number: 914256675

. .

Written in blank verse, the story of Mildred Loving, an African American girl, and Richard Loving, a Caucasian boy, who challenge the Virginia law forbidding interracial marriages in the 1950s.

Struttin' with some barbecue :
ISBN: 9781580897402. OCLC Number: 993623869

. .

This is the true story of Lil Hardin Armstrong: pianist, composer, and bandleader in the early days of jazz. Ahead of her time, Lil made a career for herself--and for Louis Armstrong, her modest, unassuming husband ... Scat-inspired verse celebrates how Lil overcame race and gender barriers to become the first lady of the Chicago jazz scene--Publisher marketing.

Zíiniyah :
ISBN: 1893354385. OCLC Number: 53130869

Salina Bookshelf,. .

A retelling of the Indian legend which explains why the Navajo always plant a scattering of zinnia flowers among their food crops and respect every spider.