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Jerry Pinkney: December 22, 1939–October 20, 2021

photo of author Jerry Pinkney

Kalamazoo Public Library is mourning the loss of acclaimed American illustrator and writer of children’s literature, Jerry Pinkney who passed away at age 81 on October 20.

Pinkney was a legend in the world of children’s publishing. He won a Caldecott medal for his 2010 picture book The Lion and The Mouse; he also won five Coretta Scott King awards from the American Library Association and a lifetime achievement award from the Society of Illustrators. Over the course of a nearly six-decade-long career, he left his mark on over a hundred books, mostly for kids and teenagers, beginning with The Adventures of Spider: West African Folk Tales in 1964.

KPL is proud to have had a personal relationship with Jerry as he was a featured author in our Youth Literature Seminar in 1988 and 1997. He was also the first author KPL brought to the Kalamazoo Juvenile Home to do a book reading for the residents.

We have created a book display in our Children’s Room at Central Library in his honor as well as a collection for your enjoyment.


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