I'm so happy to share my books with you. I write nonfiction and informational books for children these days, though I spent more than 25 years writing nonfiction for adults in books, newspapers & magazines. I love writing about real people, animals & ideas—for me, truth is actually more exciting than fiction!
Cougar Crossing Coming Feb. 2021!
COUGAR CROSSING: How Hollywood's Celebrity Cougar Helped Build a Bridge for City Wildlife, illustrated by Alexander Vidal (Simon & Schuster/Beach Lane Books), arrives on bookstore shelves Feb. 2, 2021.
P-22, the famed “Hollywood Cougar,” was born in a national park near Los Angeles, California. When it was time for him to leave home and stake a claim to his own territory, he embarked on a perilous journey—somehow crossing sixteen lanes of the world’s worst traffic—to make his home in LA’s Griffith Park, overlooking the famed Hollywood sign. But Griffith Park is a tiny territory for a mountain lion, and P-22’s life has been filled with struggles.
Residents of Los Angeles have embraced this brave cougar as their own and, along with the scientists monitoring P-22, raised money to build a wildlife bridge across Highway 101 to help cougars and other wildlife safely expand their territories and build new homes—ensuring their survival for years to come.
* A Kirkus Best Picture Book of 2020
* California Reading Association EUREKA! Honor Award winner
"A fascinating and inspiring STEAM-driven tale." - Kirkus, starred review
"This book should be in all personal and professional collections." - Librarian's Quest blog
WINGED WONDERS: Solving the Monarch Migration Mystery (Sleeping Bear Press, 2020)—written by me and illustrated by Yas Imamura—aasks the question: who tracked the Great Monarch Butterfly Migration?
Through questions, and a sprinkle of mystery, this picture book introduces young readers to all the people from Canada to Mexico who figured out the details of the monarchs' miraculous yearly journey.
Once the mystery is solved, I ask a new question of readers: who will keep the monarchs alive? This leads to back matter with many ideas for kids to take part in helping these amazing creatures and the environment that sustains them.
Miep and the Most Famous Diary
"A beautifully realized homage." - Kirkus, starred review
"A truly valuable resource." - School Library Journal, starred review
Miep and the Most Famous Diary (Sleeping Bear Press, 2019) is a picture book biography—written by me and illustrated by Jordi Solano—about Miep Gies, the woman who saved Anne Frank's diary. This touching story follows Miep's journey of rescuing, then facing her feelings about, the diary of the beloved girl whose family she helped hide away for two years—which became one of the most read books in the world.
I had the honor of meeting Miep Gies in person over 20 years ago, when I was a newspaper journalist covering her visit to the United States from her home in Amsterdam. Watching her talk to children about Anne Frank and compassion, I was so touched and inspired to share her story with generations to come.
More Books Coming in 2021/2022
I'm thrilled to have two more STEM/solutionary nonfiction picture books coming out in 2021 & 2022:
OCEAN SOUP: A Recipe for You, Me and a Cleaner Sea—written by me and illustrated by Lucy Semple (Sleeping Bear Press) - Spring 2021
MAKE WAY FOR ANIMALS!: The Wonderful World of Wildlife Crossings—written by me and illustrated by Bao Luu (Lerner/Millbrook) - Spring 2022
See the Publisher's Weekly announcements to the left for more details.
K-12 School/Library Market Books
Twenty years ago, I was a young, in-house associate editor at an educational publisher working with older freelance writers to produce books for the K-12 educational market. Today, I'm one of those (older) freelance writers writing the books!
I currently have 19 educational publisher books published or forthcoming, from publishers Cherry Lake Press (in their Itty Bitty Bio series) and Rourke Educational Media, and I've written for Capstone digital education products.
I enjoy writing books for both educational and trade publishers. Having any of my books in schools and libraries, where kids can read them, is a dream come true for me.
Senna Helps The Sea Lions
I wrote & illustrated Senna Helps the Sea Lions (and You Can, Too!) as a fundraiser and a teaching tool in 2015. It was my first "Solutionary Story"—telling the true tale of my daughter Senna's mission to help the threatened California Sea Lions after we came across two starving baby sea lions on our local beach near San Diego.
This book provided an inspiring introduction to the idea of being "solutionaries" for kids in grades K-6. It included back matter offering ideas on how to help ocean animals as well as fun facts about sea lions. The book's profits all went to The Pacific Marine Mammal Center. It's now out of print.
Books for Grown-Ups
For over 20 years, before turning my focus to writing for children, I wrote nonfiction for grown-ups in books, newspapers & magazines. I still publish some essays for grown-ups in books & magazines, and my essays are published in eight anthologies, including several Chicken Soup for the Soul books. I've also been a co-author & editor on numerous nonfiction books. You can learn about these books and my writing & editing for grown-ups here.
When I write for grown-ups, I use my full married name: Megan Pincus Kajitani. But when I write for kids, I use my shorter nickname: Meeg Pincus. I like both my long name and my short name, but with my three-part full name, people usually mispronounce two out of three!