Aida Salazar is a writer, arts advocate, and home-schooling mother who grew up in South East LA. She received an MFA in Writing from the California Institute of the Arts, and her writings have appeared in publications such as the Huffington Post, Women and Performance: Journal of Feminist Theory, and Huizache Magazine. Her short story, By the Light of the Moon, was adapted into a ballet by the Sonoma Conservatory of Dance and is the first Xicana-themed ballet in history. Aida lives with her family of artists in a teal house in Oakland, CA.
Advance Praise for The Moon Within
* "A worthy successor to Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret set in present-day Oakland.... Salazar's verse novel is sensitive and fresh.... An authentically middle school voice and diverse Latinx cast make this book a standout." -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review * "An excellent addition for upper middle grade and middle school readers, especially for maturing tweens in the midst of puberty." -- School Library Journal, starred review "This story is told in beautiful poems.... A lovely, relatable story....The words really use up the space on the pages in creative ways, and the author reveals cultural aspects of Latinx (especially Xicana) and Caribbean peoples in rich detail." -- Booklist "Lyrical.... The characters leap to life and eloquently evoke the passion and pain of a girl's coming-of-age. Absolutely beautiful, reverent, and intensely personal, the book would make a valued gift for pre-teen readers, especially a young Latina." -- School Library Connection "This is a fascinating tale that blends ancestral traditions from two cultures, while portraying modern dilemmas. Salazar's poetry is as lovely and graceful as the dance scenes." -- Margarita Engle, National Young People's Poet Laureate and Newbery Honor-winning author of The Surrender Tree "With conga-pulsed lyrics, Aida Salazar pulls us into the coming of age of eleven year Celi. She initiates readers into the conversation of Bomba, the girl-woman circle, divine twin energies and the many moon-tide powers of a Latina pre-teen. This is a book whose form and content, vision and depth, I find revolutionary and culturally ecstatic. In these times, here is the liberation verse our youth and all have been waiting for - Brava-Bravo!" -- Juan Felipe Herrera, U.S. Poet Laureate and author of Jabberwalking "Aida Salazar has reached deep into our indigenous past to explore in beautiful, poignant poetry what it means to become a woman at the intersection of community and self. Rooted in ancestral lore yet vibrantly modern, The Moon Within is a touching, powerful, and important novel in verse." -- David Bowles, Pura Belpr Honor-winning author of The Smoking Mirror "In a vivid, magical debut, Aida Salazar's lyrical poetry deftly pulls you into Celi's vibrant world as she reluctantly dances towards womanhood, adjusting to the drumbeats of first love and true friendship while exploring her ancestral roots as she finds her role within family and community." - Naheed H. Senzai, award-winning author of Shooting Kabul and Escape From Aleppo "Lovely and amazing...a heartbreaker, in every wonderful way. Salazar's vivid and accessible verse brings us the coming-of-age story we've been longing for. Poignant, funny, and deeply moving, The Moon Within is a story told with an abundance of love and respect-a gift straight from the center of Salazar's heart to readers everywhere." -- Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, author of Eighth-Grade Superzero and co-author of Naomis Too