MOBERLY — More than 300 students from Randolph and Monroe counties met children’s book authors Dan Gemeinhart and Kate Allen at the Little Dixie Regional Libraries Authors’ Event.
Little Dixie hosted the event at the historic 4th Street Theater and invited area schools to attend. Moberly’s Altrusa, Friends of Moberly Library and Moberly Middle School helped fund the event, said Rachael Grime, director of Little Dixie Regional Libraries.
The students asked questions, took photos and left with a bag of books from the authors.
Born in Germany, Gemeinhart shared with students his trials and tribulations, his perseverance and optimism, from his life as a teacher and later as a school librarian. He shared with the students how important it is to keep trying and working to achieve their goals.
The students gasped when they learned that Gemeinhart had been rejected 99 times, but his 100th request turned into his first book deal.
Gemeinhart lives in Washington State with his wife and three daughters and has published five books.
Kate Allen grew up in Massachusetts and has moved around a lot since then. She shared her inspiration behind her debut novel, “The Line Tender,” while addressing the packed auditorium.
As a teenager, Allen lived near the cape and was shocked one day when locals came to talk about a captured shark. Hundreds of people rushed to the docks to spot this great white shark caught in the fishing nets. The incident inspired Allen to begin researching sharks and write his first book.
Gemeinhart and Allen have been nominated for the 2021 Truman Reader Award sponsored by the Missouri Association of School Librarians.
Little Dixie has library branches in Moberly, Madison, Paris and Huntsvill.