A Sense of Belonging

Teen Stage

Saturday, 11:15-12:00

Whether trying to find your home in a new place or in a place you've always known, hope and loss are inevitably intertwined. Marie Marquardt (The Radius of Us), Joanne O'Sullivan (Between Two Skies), and Lilliam Rivera (The Education of Margot Sanchez) present stories of teens searching to belong.


Marie Marquardt


Marie Marquardt is an author of the young adult novels Dream Things True and The Radius of Us, with her third YA novel, Flight Season, publishing in early 2018. She is a Scholar-in-Residence at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology and has been an advocate for social justice for Latin American immigrants in the South for two decades. She is chair of El Refugio, a Georgia non-profit that serves detained immigrants and their families. Dr. Marquardt has published many articles and co-authored two nonfiction books on the issues involved and has been interviewed on National Public Radio, Public Radio International and BBC America, among many other media outlets. She is a proud member of the We Need Diverse Books team and lives in a busy household in Decatur with her spouse, four children, a dog and a bearded dragon.

Joanne O'Sullivan


Joanne O’Sullivan is a freelance journalist and communications professional. She lived in New Orleans for several years and returns to southern Louisiana frequently. Between Two Skies is her debut novel. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina, with her husband and children.

Lilliam Rivera


Lilliam Rivera is an award-winning writer and author of The Education of Margot Sanchez, a contemporary young adult novel available now from Simon & Schuster. Lilliam lives in Los Angeles, Calif., and was recently named a "2017 Face to Watch" by the Los Angeles Times; she’s currently completing her second novel.


Lauren Morrill

Lauren Morrill is the author of YA novels Meant to Be, Being Sloane Jacobs, The Trouble With Destiny, and My Unscripted Life. Her next novel, Better Than the Best Plan, releases Winter 2019 from Farrar, Straus, & Giroux. She lives in Macon, GA with her husband and two sons.