MEENA HARRIS at Books Inc. Palo Alto!

Books Inc. Palo Alto proudly welcomes local and New York Times Bestselling author Meena Harris for a very special story time with her friends and fellow best-selling authors Joanna Ho and Muon Thi Van! (ages 4+)

An empowering holiday picture book by Meena Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Ambitious Girl.

Amalia the Elf loves everything about making teddy bears . . .


Watching Grandma and Mama sew!
Feeling the soft, velvety fur!
Imagining the bears in their new homes!

. . . except the bear-making part.


Worried about disappointing her family, Amalia goes straight to Santa for advice. But it's Mrs. Claus who knows how to solve Amalia's problem--and who needs help with a secret of her own.

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Meena Harris, The Truth About Mrs. Claus is an empowering story about being true to yourself, honoring family traditions, and believing in Christmas magic.



Praise for Meena Harris' Ambitious Girl:

"I love that Ambitious Girl both shows and tells--it shows a girl who looks like my own daughter and tells her, and her brother, that women's ambition is powerful and something to be celebrated."

-- Mindy Kaling, Actor, Producer, Activist, and New York Times Bestselling Author

"I know a thing or two about being called "ambitious" as an insult. But ambitious girls fight for change. Ambitious girls lift up their communities. Ambitious girls run for president. Ambitious girls can do anything. This celebration of girls' ambition is timely, inspiring, and much-needed."

-- Hillary Rodham Clinton

"Ambitious Girl is such an important children's book, because it defines ambition in different terms than we're used to. We are so often told ambition is a drive toward professional success, but Ambitious Girl knows it's so much more -- it's a drive toward owning your life and humanity. When we, especially girls, are taught about ambition it often comes with an inherent competition, that there's only one slot available. I love that this book breaks that myth. I know Meena and her family live by these beliefs, and I'm so grateful she has put it down in beautiful words to share with the rest of us."

-- Kristen Bell, Actor, Producer, Activist, and New York Times Bestselling Author

"This wonderful book tells young girls what we have ALL needed to hear but haven't heard nearly enough: Ambition is good, and girls who are ambitious achieve great things and help others. This delightful book is a must read for every little girl."-- Padma Lakshmi, Author, UNDP Goodwill Ambassador, and ACLU Artist Ambassador for Immigrant and Women's Rights project

"Being ambitious means daring to be different and being willing to break the mold. That can be scary, but with Ambitious Girl by her side, young girls will know they can do anything."

-- Issa Rae, Actor, Producer, Activist

"Meena writes an ambitious story for persistent girls who are routinely told they don't matter. Kids deserve books where they can see themselves, their potential for greatness, and the power of dreaming big. Ambitious Girl is one of those treasures of a picture book--it entertains, it educates, it's a must read."

-- Ibtihaj Muhammad, U.S. Olympic Medalist and New York Times Bestselling Author

"In a complex world, Ambitious Girl is a powerful way to talk to kids, especially Black and Brown children, about overcoming stereotypes and owning your confidence. I am so happy to see us represented on the page, and I can't wait to give this book to every young person in my life--and a few older readers as well!"

-- Diane Guerrero, Actor, Activist, and Author

"When I learned about the water crisis in my hometown of Flint, I didn't have many young role models who looked like me. But I did what any ambitious girl would do and took that first step. I love that Ambitious Girl will encourage the next generation of young female activists to speak up and not back down."

-- Mari Copeny, Thirteen-Year-Old Activist and Philanthropist

"Have you ever sobbed into a children's book? I have and that book is Ambitious Girl. It was the empowerment and good cry of relief I deserve. I'll be requiring every girl and woman in my life to read it, and I'd love for every boy, man, and being in this world to read it with us too."-- Liza Koshy, Actress, Creator, Producer

Ambitious Girl is not just beautiful for its text, it's also one of the first times I've seen the ambition of girls of color centered and celebrated. I look forward to making this book a regular bedtime affirmation in our house."-- Jessica Alba, Entrepreneur, Advocate, Actress, New York Times Bestselling Author, and Founder of The Honest Company

"A nourishing, necessary story for girls to harness their inner heroines, make them come alive off the page, and thrive in real life."-- Amber Tamblyn, Author and Actress

"The quick moral? Don't let the world judge you--'You tell them who you are.' The story is inclusive of all girls and some nonbinary folk in uplifting illustrations that shout the lessons, that 'too' is darkly overwhelming, but women before her have opened doors. Here, also, is the quote children everywhere have been learning in this political season--'You may be the first someday, but don't be the last--make space for more!'"-- School Library Journal

"Harris and Valdez's appreciable celebration of female ambition begins with a televised broadcast of a Black female speaker being labeled 'too assertive, too persistent, too ambitious, too loud.' In Valdez's bright, largely unlined art, a brown-skinned girl, who walks up the street with three older Black women, is not discouraged by what she sees.... Her mother explains that historical figures, shown in a navy wash, 'have opened so many doors, ' paving the way for this child's hopes and desires to flourish."-- Publishers Weekly

"The soft watercolor illustrations amplify the book's underlying messages of love and hope, filling the backgrounds with a multiracial cast of women diverse in age, sexuality, ethnicity, and ability. An inspiring, rhyming ode to female ambition."-- Kirkus Reviews

"A pep talk, a call to action, and a beautiful story. This book reminds me of so many bedtime conversations my mother and I had when I was growing up. Our girls are powerful and limitless."

-- America Ferrera, Activist, Actor, Producer, and Director


Like Amalia the Elf, Meena Harris was born into a family of ambitious women whose legacy continues to inspire her. She is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Ambitious Girl, a lawyer, an entrepreneur, and the founder of Phenomenal, a values-driven, 360-degree media company that centers women and historically excluded communities. She currently resides in the Bay Area with her husband and two daughters.

Joanna Ho is passionate about equity in books and education. She has been an English teacher, a dean, and a teacher professional development mastermind. She is currently the vice principal of a high school in the San Francisco Bay Area. Homemade chocolate chip cookies, outdoor adventures, and dance parties with her kids make Joanna's eyes crinkle into crescent moons. Her books for young readers include Eyes That Kiss in the Corners. Visit her at and @JoannaHoWrites.

Muon Thi Van stitches stories by starlight and by daylight. Some of these stories become books, and some of these books are read around the world. From her debut, In a Village by the Sea, illustrated by April Chu, to Wishes, illustrated by Victo Ngai, Muon's books have received many distinctions. Muon's best stories, though, are her three children; together they live and grow in California.

Event date: 
Sunday, December 11, 2022 - 3:00pm
Event address: 
Books Inc.
74 Town & Country Village
Palo Alto, CA 94301
The Truth About Mrs. Claus By Meena Harris, Keisha Morris (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Meena Harris, Keisha Morris (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780316232272
Availability: In Stock Now - Click Title to See Store Inventory. Please allow up to 48-hours for Curbside Pickup orders to be processed.
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - October 18th, 2022

Eyes That Kiss in the Corners By Joanna Ho, Dung Ho (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Joanna Ho, Dung Ho (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780062915627
Availability: In Stock Now - Click Title to See Store Inventory. Please allow up to 48-hours for Curbside Pickup orders to be processed.
Published: HarperCollins - January 5th, 2021

I Love You Because I Love You By Muon Thi Van, Jessica Love (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Muon Thi Van, Jessica Love (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780062894595
Availability: In Stock Now - Click Title to See Store Inventory. Please allow up to 48-hours for Curbside Pickup orders to be processed.
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - January 18th, 2022

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