Barbara Bietz

When Barbara isn't reading, she is probably typing away at her desk working on a new manuscript, surrounded by her two naughty (but nice) dogs. Barbara is often inspired by her favorite books and sometimes enjoys playing guitar, but, she says, not very well.

Barbara’s chapter book, Like a Maccabee, received the 2006 Midwest Independent Publishers Association Merit Award. She is also the creator of the website Jewish Books for Kids and a former chair of the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, which honors exceptional works about the Jewish experience. Her favorite part about being an author? Visiting schools, meeting young readers, and eating lunch in the cafeteria—especially when it’s grilled cheese day! Barbara lives with her family in Oak Park, California.


In collaboration with John Kanzler, Barbara's award-winning LittleFolk picture book, The Sundance Kid, tells the story of a Jewish family's struggle to preserve their traditions in a small, desert town in the Old West. The Sundown Kid was recognized with a number of prestigious awards including: The Sydney Taylor Notable Book for Young Readers, the Gold Award Recipient Mom's Choice Award a Storytelling World Award.


Barbara’s latest collaboration with John, Sweet Tamales for Purim, will be released in 2020 and tells the story from the perspective of Rebecca, a young girl, who along with her new friend, Luis plans to create a Purim festival for their Old West town before the family goat, Kitzel, undermines their plans and the real fun begins.
To discover more about Barbara and the books that she loves, visit her website at:

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