Fredrick L. McKissack
August 12, 1939 - April 28, 2013
On April 28, 2013, respected and prolific children's book author, Fredrick L. McKissack, passed away from congestive heart failure. He was 73. Over the course of an over three-decade collaboration, Mr. McKissack and his wife, Patricia McKissack, wrote over 100 children's books. Winning many awards--including multiple Coretta Scott King awards--the McKissacks focused on biographies and histories, chronicling the lives of influential African Americans and the Black experience in America. One book by the McKissacks that had a great impact on me was Rebels Against Slavery: American Slave Revolts. I remember reading it in junior high and being shocked and empowered by the accounts of those who fought against slavery as slaves--stories I had never heard in school. The world of children's literature is poorer for his loss, but the books he left us are a lasting legacy. You can read more about Mr. McKissack's life in The New York Times and Publisher's Weekly.