Julia Alvarez is the award-winning author of How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents and In the Time of the Butterflies. Her highly acclaimed books for young readers include The Secret Footprints, A Gift of Gracias, the Tia Lola series, Finding Miracles, and Return to Sender. Alvarez has won numerous awards for her work, including the Pura Belpre and Americas awards for her children's books, the Hispanic Heritage Award in Literature, and the F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Literature. In 2013, she was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Obama. She is currently a writer-in-residence at Middlebury College and, together with her husband, Bill Eichner, established Alta Gracia, a sustainable coffee farm/literacy center in the Dominican Republic. Visit her on the Web at juliaalvarez.com.