Angela Burke Kunkel is a school librarian by day and a writer in the very early mornings. Her debut picture book with illustrator Paola Escobar, DIGGING FOR WORDS, JOSÉ ALBERTO GUTIÉRREZ AND THE LIBRARY HE BUILT (Schwartz & Wade), celebrates perseverance, community, and the power of books. Look for PENGUIN JOURNEY, her nonfiction picture book-in-verse with Catherine Odell, in October 2021(Abrams). Her third picture book with illustrator Claire Keane, MAKE WAY, will be released in 2023 by Random House Studio. You can learn more at www.angelakunkel.com, or follow Angela on Twitter and Instagram @angkunkel.
Angela Burke Kunkel is the author of DIGGING FOR WORDS: JOSÉ ALBERTO GUTIÉRREZ AND THE LIBRARY HE BUILT, illustrated by Paola Escobar and published by Random House/Schwartz and Wade. Angela was inspired to write DIGGING FOR WORDS after seeing a video of José Alberto Gutiérrez's incredible library. A current school librarian and former English Language Arts teacher, she has experience working with all types of readers, from the reluctant to the voracious. A graduate of Simmons College, Angela has taught in alternative and public schools in Massachusetts, as well as at a New Mexico middle school with a nationally-recognized dual education program. She now lives in Vermont, where she lives with her husband and two children. Look for her next picture book, PENGUIN JOURNEY, in 2021, and MAKE WAY, in 2023. You can learn more about Angela at www.angelakunkel.com, or follow her on Twitter and Instagram @angkunkel.
Hi-Res Image Gallery
Author photos by Mei Lin Barral.
About the Book
DIGGING FOR WORDS Summary
In the city of Bogotá, in the barrio of La Nueva Gloria, there lives two Josés.
One, a garbage collector, prepares his truck for its route through wealthy neighborhoods. Señor José drives all night, scanning the sidewalks as he works, searching for hidden treasure . . .
The other, a young boy, dreams of Saturday, when he can visit Señor José's library, filled with towering stacks of books rescued from the trash.
This stunning celebration of community and libraries was inspired by the real life of José Alberto Gutiérrez, who has helped bring the magic of books to the children of Colombia.