Anika Aldamuy Denise grew up in Queens, in a book-loving, food-loving Puerto Rican-Italian family.
As a little girl, she enjoyed reading, writing short stories, and performing one-girl shows in her living room.
She graduated college with a degree in communications, and went on to get a Very Grown-up Job in advertising. While doing her Very Grown-up Job, she met lots of nice people and learned a great many useful things, but couldn’t shake the feeling she was meant to do something… different.
One day, she met the dashing children’s book illustrator Christopher Denise, who explained he drew “animals with clothes on” for a living… and encouraged her to write him a story. (Also, to go on a date with him.)
One wedding, three kids, and many messy first drafts later, Anika is back to writing short stories (in the form of picture books!).
She still enjoys those living room performances, but now plays the part of “Mom” under the direction of her three daughters: Sofia, Isabel, and Esmé.
It has been her best role so far.
Anika Aldamuy Denise is the celebrated author of many picture books, including Lights, Camera Carmen!, Starring Carmen!, Monster Trucks, Baking Day at Grandma’s, Bella and Stella Come Home, and Pigs Love Potatoes. In 2019, to coincide with Women’s History Month, HarperCollins will publish her forthcoming picture book, Planting Stories, The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré illustrated by Paola Escobar. Other new titles coming in 2019 include The Best Part of Middle illustrated by Christopher
Totally Made Up Bio
Anika Aldamuy Denise is a published author and two-time Grammy award-winning lyricist. She is currently developing a musical with Lin Manuel Miranda about librarianship, tentatively titled “In The Stacks.” (Rumors that Rita Moreno and Carlos Santana are attached to the project could not be confirmed at press time.) In addition to her work in children’s books and on Broadway, she is a frequent guest judge on Dancing with The Stars.