Book signing and workshop with progressive children's book author Innosanto Nagaro

Frugal Bookstore
57 Warren Street, Roxbury MA 02119
Questions: (617) 541-1722
Innosanto will be discussing his new book:
The Wedding Portrait is an essential book for kids about standing up for what’s right. Here are stories of direct action from around the world that are bookended by the author’s wedding story. He and his bride led their wedding party to a   protest, and were captured in a photo by the local newspaper kissing in front of a line of police just before being arrested. “We usually follow the rules. But sometimes, if you see something is wrong–more wrong than breaking the rules and by breaking the rules you might stop it–you may need to break the rules.” When indigenous people in Colombia block an oil company from destroying their environment–this is a blockade; when Florida farmworkers encourage people not to buy their tomatos because the farm owners won’t pay them for their hard work–this is called a boycott; and when Claudette Colvin takes a seat in the front of the bus to protest racism–this is called civil disobedience.  In brilliantly bright and inspiring illustrations we see ordinary people say No–to unfair treatment, to war, to destroying the environment. Innosanto Nagara has beautifully melded an act of love with crucial ideas of civil disobedience and direct action that will speak to young readers’ sense of right and wrong. There has never been a more important moment for Innosanto Nagara’s gentle message of firm resolve.

About the author:
I was born and raised in Jakarta, Indonesia, and moved to the U.S. in 1988 to study zoology at UC Davis. A couple of decades later, I’m a graphic designer. I’m a founding member of Design Action Collective, a worker-owned cooperative design studio in Oakland that is dedicated to “serving the Movement for social change”. I’m very lucky to be able to do what I do best (graphic design) for the people and organizations I respect the most (activists) who are working towards a better world.

Our family lives in a wonderful cohousing community in North Oakland that we call it The Orchard for all the fruit trees. There are eight children who have all been coming up together in our community, so I’ve been reading kids books for a while. But when I became a father myself however, having books that reflected my values that were also fun to read became very important.

I originally just wrote A is for Activist for my son. But friends encouraged me to print more of them, so after a successful kickstarter campaign, I self-published it. It almost immediately sold out, and I had to decide what to do next. That’s when I was introduced to Seven Stories Press. With their help, we took A is for Activist to the next level. Then we worked with Martha Gonzalez (from the Grammy Award winning East LA band Quetzal) on a Spanish language adaptation. Then Swedish translation came out from Oppenheim förlag. And in the Fall of 2015, they published my second book, Counting on Community.

Following those successes, I started writing picture books. My Night in the Planetarium, a true story about Indonesia, the Art of Resistance, and how we overcome a dictatorship, came out in 2016, and The Wedding Portrait, a story about why sometimes we break the rules, is in stores in October, 2017.

I’m also on the editorial team of M is for Movement, a site dedicated to social justice and activist themed children’s books.