Hamline News

Coe Booth Joins MFAC Faculty

The Creative Writing Programs (CWP) at Hamline have added esteemed author Coe Booth to their impressive list of faculty in the MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults (MFAC) Program. Booth is a fiction writer who specializes in writing for adolescents, and has received numerous accolades for her books like Tyrell and Bronxwood.

“We are thrilled to have attracted a writer like Coe Booth to Hamline's MFAC program,” said Mary François Rockcastle, professor and director of the CWP. “She's a wonderful writer, an experienced teacher, and brings rich experience working with teens.”

Booth’s work is inspired by her life in the Bronx and her experiences working with troubled teenagers. Her debut novel, Tyrell, tells the story of an African-American teen who is living with his mother and little brother in a homeless shelter. The novel won the 2006 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Fiction.

“As someone who grew up rarely seeing my life or culture reflected in books, it's very important for me that diverse voices be published, especially for children and teens,” Booth said. “We have such a limited time to create lifelong readers, and it's so much harder with kids who view books as being about and for other people, not them.”

Following her critically acclaimed debut novel, Booth published two more young adult novels, Kendra and Bronxwood. The American Library Association named both Kendra and Bronxwood as Best Books for Young Adults. Booth’s most recent novel for middle-grade readers, Kinda Like Brothers, draws on her experience as a caseworker with Child Protective Services in New York City. The story focuses on Jarrett who is forced to share his room and his family with Kevon, a young man his same age who was placed in his home as a foster child.

Between Booth’s writing experience, her masterful technique, and passion for literature, she is undoubtedly a great addition to the MFAC faculty.