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Carroll County Times
Carroll County Lifestyles

Baltimore native shares his new young adult novel at Westminster library branch

Baltimore native and best-selling author R. Eric Thomas visited the Carroll County Public Library Westminster Branch last week to share his newest book, a young adult novel called “Kings of B’More.” The novel follows two best friends, Black queer teens, who find themselves on an epic adventure in Baltimore, learning more about themselves and affirming their friendship. Representation matters, Thomas said, and he created the novel to help shine some light and hope on young Black boys, who don’t always get a happy ending in works of fiction.

“The characters run into different obstacles but nothing terrible happens to them,” he said. “That was important to me because they are Black kids and they are queer. We can find lots of stories where bad things happen to kids like them, but I wanted to create a little safe space between these pages.”

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Thomas, who worked at a library as a teen, shared his appreciation for the library branch’s Exploration Commons space, and public libraries in general, which he called miraculous places where anyone can step inside a book and be transported to a new place or learn something about themselves.

“I think about who is telling our stories, who is putting our stories on shelves,” Thomas said. “And I get so excited about libraries like this that are saying, actively, ‘we want these stories.’ We don’t know that other kinds of lives exist until we see them or read them.”

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Attendees of the book talk received a free copy of “Kings of B’more,” signed by the author. The event was presented by A Likely Story Bookstore of Sykesville and Carroll County Public Library in partnership with Carroll Citizens for Racial Equality and PFLAG Westminster, Carroll County.


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