ETF Makes the Houston School District’s “Name That Book” List

Proud that Evangelina Takes Flight made the Houston School District’s Name That Book List for 2018/19. See the full list HERE.

There could not be a better time for young adults to read Evangelina Takes Flight to understand the history of the immigrant experience during the Mexican Revolution and relate it to current day events.

Name That Book

I’d like to share a passage from the book, the Town Hall scene where the town’s doctor is pleading with community members who want to ban the foreign-born children from attending the only school in town.

“Evangelina came to Texas with her family to escape the revolution. If your own family was in danger of being murdered, would you stay and wait for it to happen? Would you knowingly leave your loved ones in harm’s way?

I know most of you are good people with big hearts! Do you think foreigners love their families any less than you do? Do you think it was easy to leave their homes and risk their lives for the privilege of living in this town?

Some of these people were highly respected and well-educated in their own language and country. Others were uneducated, simple, hard-working folks, anxious to start again without the fear of starving, being robbed, kidnapped or murdered. Just because you had the good fortune of being born in this country makes you no smarter, more deserving or more civilized than someone born elsewhere.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Infinite Terrifying Unknown – An Ode to the Immigrant Children

EK_0138On this Father’s Day weekend, I remember there was no greater feeling of safety and love and possibility than when I was with my Dad.

I can only imagine how immigrant children today must feel at the border of the promise-land, as they’re captured, screaming, reaching for their parents, loaded into busses and carted off into the infinite terrifying unknown.

Infinite Terrifying Unknown

Diana J Noble

We walked the ocean shore in search of sand dollars

A tentative step into the foamy swirling water, my hand in his

An infinite terrifying unknown before me

What monster lie in wait

to snatch a child and drag her

to its cold black hole on the other side

I looked up

mouth open

breath captive in my chest

Father bent low

“I’ve got you” he said

“What’s down there?” I asked



Small creatures

Giant creatures

Mountains of sand dollars

Beautiful magical life 

beyond our imagination”

I leaned into the warmth of him

“I’m scared” I said

“I’ve got you”

You’re safe” he assured

Its grip was sudden

Father screamed, pulled and thrashed against it

Indifferent to my cries it

dragged me into the infinite terrifying unknown



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Evangelina Takes Flight Receives the 2018 Skipping Stones Multicultural Book Award

Skipping Stones Awards






The dream continues… thank you to the team at Skipping Stones International Multicultural Magazine for this honor. The book review is not available yet, but when it is, I’ll post it here.

Check out Skipping Stones Magazine at their website:


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Proud Texas Daughters

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Posting this a second time, since the photos came out all wonky (HUGE) on the last post. Joining me in the photo are Valarie Riefenstahl (daughter of June Franklin Naylor, sponsor of the award I received), Susan Riedesel and President General Barbara Stevens. Thank you again for recognizing Evangelina Takes Flight.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Amazing Brighton School 7th Graders

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I was fortunate to speak to Brighton School 7th graders who read or are reading Evangelina Takes Flight. I shared a bit about my beautiful Mexican-American family and the connections to Evangelina’s story as well as the trials, tribulations and deep personal rewards of publishing a novel.

The English teacher, Ms. Thaler, had each student draw/write 6 postcards from Evangelina to her grandfather (Abuelito) to tell him about her new life in Texas. I’ve included just a handful of them here. I’m impressed (!) and appreciative of their efforts.

Thank you to Ms. Thaler and the smart, thoughtful and talented students!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Interview for PhD Student’s Doctoral Dissertation

Thanks to Annette Zapata for interviewing me as part of her doctoral dissertation on Latino Portrayals in Young Adult Historical Fiction. It’s a good representation of my motivations for writing the book and what I hope readers get out of it.

PS: I found the butterfly earrings in a gift shop in Anaheim and just had to buy them, because they go with my book’s cover art. What a find!

Interview with Annette Zapata

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SCBWI Inside Story on May 6 @ the Bellevue Library

Happy to have been chosen for this event. I look forward to meeting fellow SCBWI (Society for Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators) authors and book-lovers alike. I’ll have 2 minutes to present Evangelina’s story, and as anyone who knows me would tell you, I’ve never been the most concise speaker. I can’t help it! I love words. Written, spoken and sung. So, I use lots of them, in every form of communication, but I promise, I’ll do this in 2 minutes. I can do this. I can do this. I can do this. (Someone flag me down if I go over…)

SCBWI Inside Story May 2018

More about the event from Dana Sullivan, Inside Story Coordinator, SCBWI Western Washington

Hello, Western Washington SCBWI! You are cordially invited to the Inside Story on Sunday, May 6, presented by SCBWI, KCLS, and the Neverending Bookshop in Bothell.

See 19 of your friends and colleagues in action as they fascinate you with 2-minute, lightning-fast stories behind their stories! There will also be trivia questions, prizes, and the chance to meet librarians, bookstore owners, teachers, and other lovers of kid-litery! Details: Sunday, May 6, 2018, 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Downtown Bellevue Library, 1111 110th Ave. NE, Bellevue, WA 98004

Annie Carl, owner of the Neverending Bookshop, will provide books for sale by this amazing lineup: Peggy King Anderson, Two-Moon Journey Michele Bacon, Antipodes Dori Hillestad Butler, King and Kayla A.L. Collins, Redworld Kevin Emerson, The Oceans Between Stars Suzanne M. Kaufman, All Are Welcome Kerri Kokias, Snow Sisters Nina Laden, Yellow Kayak Kirby Larson, Code Word Courage Lisa Mantchev, Jinx and the Doom Fight Crime! Sarah Jane Marsh, Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word Diana J. Noble, Evangelina Takes Flight Lisa L. Owens, Attack On Pearl Harbor Karen S. Robbins, Flags Across America Kevin John Scott, Frederik Sandwich and the Earthquake that Couldn’t Possibly Be Elizabeth Rose Stanton, Bub Dana Sullivan, My Red Velvet Cape (Hey, look!) Wendy Wahman, Nanny Paws Suzanne Williams,Thunder Girls, Freya

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment