Author Chat with Tracey Baptiste (African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History), Plus Giveaway! ~ (US Only)


Today we are chatting with Tracey Baptiste, author of

African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History!

Read on for more about Tracey, her book, and a giveaway!





Meet Tracey Baptiste!


Tracey Baptiste lived in Trinidad until she was fifteen; she grew up on jumbie stories and fairy tales. She is a New York Times bestselling author of Minecraft: The CrashThe Jumbies, Rise of the Jumbies, and The Jumbie God’s Revenge, and a former teacher who works as a writer and editor. Visit her online at and on Twitter: @TraceyBaptiste.


Website * Facebook Twitter * Instagram








Meet African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History!

Meet the ten remarkable kings, queens, inventors, scholars, and visionaries who changed the world. 

Black history begins thousands of years ago with the many cultures and people of the African continent.

Through portraits of ten heroic figures, author Tracey Baptiste takes readers on a journey across Africa to meet some of the great leaders and thinkers whose vision built a continent and shaped the world.

Illustrator Hillary D. Wilson’s brilliant portraits accompany each profile, along with vivid, information-filled landscapes, maps, and graphics for readers to pore over and return to again and again.


 Amazon * B & N * Indiebound







~ Author Chat ~


YABC:  What gave you the inspiration to write this book?

I was tired of the same people and topics every Black History Month and wanted to explore what happened in Black history before the forcible enslavement and displacement of African people.



YABC:  Who is your favorite icon in the book?

My favorite icon is probably Amanirenas because she went toe to toe with Ceasar Augustus and won. He didn't see that coming.



YABC:  Which came first, the title or the novel?

The text of this book definitely came first. I had no idea what to call it, and even after we decided on a title, it changed a bit with input from my editor, as well as people in marketing and sales.



YABC:  Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?

I've learned to trust myself and my process. I know that I can get through to the end of a book, but sometimes, especially somewhere in the middle, a project feels totally daunting and I doubt that I can see it through to completion.



YABC:  What do you like most about the cover of the book?

Hillary Wilson's artwork is astonishing. She does these amazing "hero" portraits of each icon and having four of them on the cover is just gorgeous.



YABC:  What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2021?

I'm really excited for Paula Chase's latest novel, Keeping it Real.



YABC:  What’s up next for you?

I'm returning to writing fiction for a while, but I have a few nonfiction ideas kicking around. So we'll see.



YABC:  Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?

Revising for sure. In the draft phase, I'm often not sure yet what the story is going to be about, yes, even for nonfiction, because I'm yet to see how all the facts align. Once the draft is done, it's easy to look at the entire artifact and understand what I need to do with it.



YABC:  What would you say is your superpower?

Is snacking a superpower? Because if it is...




 African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History

Author: Tracey Baptiste

Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers

 Publish Date: October 19th, 2021






Three winners will recieve a copy of African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History (Tracey Baptiste) ~ (US Only)


*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*



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Comments 2

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Penny Olson on Thursday, 11 November 2021 22:44

It would be great to learn about African history.

It would be great to learn about African history.
Danielle Hammelef on Saturday, 13 November 2021 16:51

The cover is powerful and I enjoy learning about new cultures and history.

The cover is powerful and I enjoy learning about new cultures and history.