The Yarn
Inside The Yarn

A Conversation with the Ambassador: Gene Luen Yang


Travis: In just a couple weeks, a new National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature will be named. It seems like the perfect time to chat with Gene Luen Yang, the guy who currently holds the title. A few things covered in this conversation:

  • How Gene’s career began with some indirect help from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
  • How Gene found out he would be the ambassador.
  • Why he chose the Reading Without Walls Challenge for his platform.
  • The reason why he will never be embarrassed while public speaking again.

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About Travis Jonker

Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.

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