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Premier Children's Literature Conference at Simmons College July 23

Nationally Known Authors, Illustrators to Attend Children's Literature Conference, titled "Crimes and Misdemeanors"

BOSTON (July 16, 2009) — Crimes of the rich and powerful have dominated this year's headlines, uncovering the many moral dilemmas faced by the accused. But what of the far less sinister "crimes" committed by children  — many of whom carry tremendous guilt over miniscule offenses? One of the nation's premier children's literature conferences will bring nationally recognized children's literature authors and illustrators to Simmons College in Boston, July 23-26, to discuss this theme.

This year's gathering, titled "Crimes and Misdemeanors" will focus on the moral and ethical predicaments endured by children. Among the speakers attending the conference are Kevin Henkes, best-selling author of Lilly's Big Day and the Caldecott Award-winning Kitten's First Full Moon; Avi, author of more 70 books, including the True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle; and graphic novelist Gareth Hines, illustrator of Bewolf and Bearskin: A Grim Tale.

The biannual conference is hosted by the Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons College, home of the nation's first Master of Arts in Children's Literature program.  Organizers say the conference is a rare forum for national children's book collaborators, including authors, illustrators, book designers, and publishers to join practitioners in the field to gather and share ideas.

The event is open to the public. The cost is $500 for non-credit or 20 professional development points for participants.  For more information contact Susan Bloom, Simmons professor emeritus and director of the Institute, at The event will take place in the Main College Building at Simmons College, 300 The Fenway in Boston.

In addition to offering a master of arts in children's literature, the Center offers a master of fine arts in writing for children.

Simmons College is a nationally recognized private university in Boston.  It includes an undergraduate college for women and graduate programs for women and men in social work, health studies, library and information science, management, and liberal arts.