Derrick Barnes wrote the critically acclaimed picture book Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut
, which received a Newbery Honor, a Coretta Scott King Honor, and the 2018 Ezra Jack Keats Award. He also wrote the bestselling chapter book series Ruby and the Booker Boys. He owns the copy-writing company Say Word Creative Communications and created the popular blog Raising the Mighty
, where he "chronicles the experience of bringing up four beautiful Black boys in America." He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with his wife and their four sons.
Vanessa Brantley-Newton has illustrated numerous picture books, including The Girl Who Heard Colors (by Marie Harris), Mary Had a Little Glam (by Tammi Sauer), One Love (by Cedella Marley), A Night Out with Mama (by Quvenzhané Wallis), and The Youngest Marcher (by Cynthia Levinson), as well as the chapter book series Ruby and the Booker Boys (by Derrick Barnes) and Jada Jones (by Kelly Starling Lyons). She wrote and illustrated Let Freedom Sing and Grandma's Purse. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.