• When I was a little girl, I wore a pioneer scarf around my neck and believed in communism. I also secretly believed in magic mirrors. Even as a shy little Soviet girl, I dreamed that across the magic glass someplace there was another land, one of skyscrapers reaching into the clouds, and giant bridges of steel that hung from the sky. I reached that land as a teen in 1993, when I stepped out of the JFK airport in New York City. I found my real home, met a man of my dreams, fell in love with the English language, moved into the Jersey suburbs, and got myself a beautiful, complicated American life.

    After college I became a newspaper journalist and had quite an adventure chasing stories, keeping tabs on local officials, or just poking my nose everywhere it’d fit. Then I stayed home with my two kids and got started on what would become a very winding writing journey.

    Teaching high school English in Camden, New Jersey became the beginning of another career I love. Now I teach 6th graders in Washington, D.C., and every day continues to be an adventure. I have an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. I write for young readers, every day. And I still believe in magic. For more information, visit my website at www.katiaraina.com

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    "A Magic Crown"