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BETWEEN THE LINES:
HOW ERNIE BARNES WENT FROM THE FOOTBALL FIELD TO THE ART GALLERY

Former ESPN sportscaster Sandra Neil Wallace and Caldecott Honor illustrator Bryan Collier tell the true story of NFL star Ernie Barnes, who became one of the most influential artists of his generation. An inspiring story of a man who made his mark in two very different worlds.


 “RICH ... A well-sourced, stirringly told account of an artist drawing inspiration from and finding beauty in the immediate surroundings of his world.”
(Publishers Weekly, starred review)

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BOUND BY ICE:
A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY

In this thrilling and terrifying true story of the 1879 search for the North Pole, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace follow the frightening fates of the Jeannette crew as disaster strikes and the men battle to survive 2 years bound by ice.


 “GRIPPING … Highly appealing narrative nonfiction for anyone who loves true adventure.”
(Kirkus, starred review)

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BLOOD BROTHER:
JONATHAN DANIELS AND HIS SACRIFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS

In this astonishing story of the first white civil rights worker in Alabama’s bloodiest county, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace weave a heart-pounding portrait of the danger Daniels faced, the teenager whose life he saved, and how his 1965 murder changed southern justice.


“America needs to hear this story.”
(Cornell William Brooks, past president, NAACP)

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BABE CONQUERS THE WORLD

Sports TV pioneer Sandra Neil Wallace’s first biography Babe Conquers the World (co-authored with Rich Wallace) captures the personality of sports legend Babe Didrikson Zaharias and the turbulent times she challenged.


“This exemplar text should be a staple for all collections.”
(School Library Journal)

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MUCKERS

Inspired by the true story of a racially divided town and a team who must find a way to win, Muckers delves into the rocky terrain of war, Communism, and segregation in 1950 Arizona.


“Fans of Friday Night Lights and other football stories will appreciate this inspiring tale.”
(School Library Journal, starred review)

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LITTLE JOE

“Sometimes a first heartbreak doesn’t involve humans.” Little Joe is about a farm boy who faces parting with the calf he loves at the fair auction. A state awards finalist and a U.S. Dept. of Ag and American Farm Bureau pick, Little Joe has been translated into 3 languages. Now in paperback and ebook editions.


"A skittish new calf and a boy who dreams of winning the blue ribbon at the County fair ... a fine story of a young boy’s choices.”
(Midwest Book Review)

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About Sandra

SANDRA NEIL WALLACE IS AN AUTHOR AND ADVOCATE for change. Known for her investigative journalism and original narrative style, her books for young readers focus on people who break barriers and change the world. As the daughter of a refugee and concentration camp survivor, Sandra became a change maker herself. The first generation in her family to attend university, she became a journalist, anchoring the network news before shattering the glass ceiling in sports television. She became the first woman to host an NHL broadcast on national TV.

Her titles have been selected as ALA Notable books, the Chicago Public Library's "Best of the Best", and awarded Booklist's  Editors' Choice, the Parents' Choice Gold Award, and Bank Street College's Best Children’s Books of the Year. She became a U.S. citizen in 2016 and advocates for social responsibility as a founding member of the Keene Immigrant Refugee Partnership and advisor to the Cohen Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Keene State College. She lives in New Hampshire and Maine with her husband, author Rich Wallace.

Upcoming Appearances

  • NEW HAMPSHIRE BOOK LAUNCH/BLOG TOUR BOUND BY ICE: A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY
  • Keene, NH BOOK SIGNING - BOUND BY ICE: A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY Toadstool Bookshop - 2PM MORE INFO HERE
  • Hershey, PA KIDLITOSPHERE CONFERENCE (KidLitCon) Author Panel of Sports Literature

    Hershey Lodge
    MORE INFO HERE
  • Newington, NH BOOK SIGNING - BOUND BY ICE: A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY Portsmouth Schools Fundraiser

    Barnes & Noble - 12-4PM
    MORE INFO HERE
  • Pittsburgh, PA PITTSBURGH ARTS & LECTURES BETWEEN THE LINES discussion with BRYAN COLLIER

    Carnegie Library Lecture Hall - 2:30PM
    MORE INFO HERE

Praise + Press

BETWEEN THE LINES: HOW ERNIE BARNES WENT FROM THE FOOTBALL FIELD TO THE ART GALLERY

"RICH … A well-sourced, stirringly told account of an artist drawing inspiration from and finding beauty in the immediate surroundings of his world."
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"FASCINATING … A biography with appeal for sports fans and budding artists alike, it will also beckon to any reader who appreciates a well-told, artfully illustrated story."
—Kirkus (starred review)

Awards

  • A Junior Library Guild selection

BOUND BY ICE: A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY

"VIVID... A gripping account of a disastrous 1879 American expedition to find the North Pole. Highly appealing narrative nonfiction for anyone who loves true adventure.”
—Kirkus (starred review)
"EXEMPLARY... Readers of historical adventure will be drawn to the story and appreciate the crew’s bravery."
—Booklist (starred review)

Awards

  • Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Books of the Year
  • California Reading Association, EUREKA! Nonfiction Children’s Gold Award

BLOOD BROTHER: JONATHAN DANIELS AND HIS SACRIFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS

"POWERFUL... An unusually inspiring story, skillfully told."
—Kirkus (starred review)

"RIVETING ...a thoroughly researched, meticulously documented biography."
—Booklist (starred review)

“This well-told tale of Jonathan Daniels—one of the most courageous figures of an earlier civil rights movement—comes at a generational moment when America needs to hear this story.”
—Cornell William Brooks, past president, NAACP
“Everyone, young and old, should read this book and find a trace of themselves in the life of Jonathan Daniels. His story reminds us that we can all be heroes.”
—Sy Montgomery, National Book Award finalist and Sibert Medal winner
“One of the most heroic Christian deeds of which I have heard in my entire ministry and career for civil rights was performed by Jonathan Daniels.”
—Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Blood Brother Trailer
“Jonathan Daniels has been an important figure in my life—his sacrifice and his work. His extraordinary heroism and commitment to realizing equality in practice, not just in law, remind us to light a candle in the darkness and say we are not going to give up; we’re going to do something.”
—Ken Burns, filmmaker
“Jonathan Daniels was inspired to get in trouble. Good trouble. Necessary trouble. He wanted to do something about making things right.”
—John Lewis, U.S. Congress

Awards

  • An ALA-ALSC Notable Children’s Book
  • Parents' Choice Gold Award
  • Booklist Editors' Choice Award
  • Booklist Top 10 Biographies for Youth
  • A Bank Street College Best Children’s Book of the Year
  • Paterson Prize for Books for Young People
  • Chicago Public Library Best of the Best
  • NCSS CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People
  • YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults, Official nominee
  • A Junior Library Guild selection
  • The Kirkus Prize 2016 nominee, Young Readers
  • California Reading Association, EUREKA! Nonfiction Children’s Honor Book
  • Nonfiction Detectives Best Books of 2016
  • Nerdy Book Club Nerdies Winner, Long Form Nonfiction
  • (Cybils) Children's and Young Adult Bloggers' Award Finalist, Young Adult Nonfiction
  • Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Book

BABE CONQUERS THE WORLD

“This exemplar text should be a staple for all collections looking to diversify their biography, sports, and women’s history offerings.”
—School Library Journal
“This energetic biography is at its best when it reveals how Babe’s drive changed so many areas in women’s sports even as society resisted their inclusion. The Wallaces handle the abrasive aspects of Babe’s personality as frankly as they highlight her successes. … Offers the combination of sports, entertainment, and celebrity that will interest young readers, and the Wallaces play it well.”
—Kirkus
“Part sports journalism, part narrative nonfiction, and part proof that professional athletes can be exemplary role models for young people.”
—Booklist
“The Wallaces do an excellent job of giving readers a great sense of Babe and who she was, warts and all.”
—Booklist “Bookends”

“She was brash, she was impossible, she was a winner for the ages. Only a great book could capture the legend of Babe Didrikson Zaharias--and this is it.”
—Jerry Spinelli, Newbery winning author of Maniac Magee and Newbery Honor Wringer

Awards

  • A Junior Library Guild selection
  • An ALA-YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers
  • A Mighty Girl Best Book of the Year

  • A Cybils Award nominee
  • A Kansas & Missouri Reading Circle Recommended Book
  • A Nebraska Library Commission Best Teen Book

  • A Virginia Library Association Jefferson Cup selection

  • Finalist, Arizona's Grand Canyon Reader Award, Tween Nonfiction

  • Runner-up, New Hampshire Literary Awards, Outstanding Work of Nonfiction

MUCKERS

“Fans of H.G. Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights and other football histories will appreciate this inspiring tale.”
—School Library Journal (starred review)
“Wallace deftly depicts the atmosphere of an era when segregation—between Mexicans and “Anglos”—was standard … provides enough emotional drama to create a rich work of historical fiction that will draw in even those without an interest in the sport.”
—Publishers Weekly
“Wallace, a former ESPN correspondent, captures a vivid sense of atmosphere and well-wrought characters, all while showcasing balls-to-the-wall football action.”
—Booklist
“[A] richly textured portrayal of a small town coping with the economic, political and racial realities of post–World War II America.... Distinctive characters and finely drawn specifics of locale and landscape set this football story apart.”
—Kirkus

Awards

  • A Junior Library Guild selection
  • Booklist Top 10 Sports Books for Youth
  • A Bank Street College Best Children’s Book of the Year
  • A Booklist “Bookends” Best Book of the Year
  • A Maine State Library Cream of the Crop
  • Finalist, New Hampshire Isinglass Teen Reads Award
  • Finalist, Arizona’s Grand Canyon Reader Award, Young Adult

LITTLE JOE

“This thoughtful, tender book will appeal to those readers who are familiar with the Stegners’ world, and many more will be able to identify with the highs and lows of familial love.”
—School Library Journal
“[Eli’s] determination to win and carry on a family tradition gets in the way of a blossoming affection for an animal friend in this fine story of a young boy’s choices.”
—Midwest Book Review
“Animal lovers will be fascinated by the details of raising beef cattle as well as the economic realities of modern farm life.”
—Booklist
“Though heartwarming and engaging to the reader, this book remains an accurate, in-depth account of life on the farm.”
—USDA’s Agriculture in the Classroom

Awards

  • Finalist, South Carolina Children’s Book Award
  • Master list, Oklahoma Sequoya Award
  • A U.S. Department of Agriculture curriculum selection
  • An American Farm Bureau curriculum selection

EDUCATORS + LIBRARIANS

“You inspired me to write my own book.” – Dylan, grade 5

Sandra Neil Wallace has inspired thousands of young students and burgeoning writers as a guest author and writing workshop leader. Sandra enjoys visiting schools along with her husband, author Rich Wallace. Find out about their school visits on Sandra’s SCHOOL VISIT GUIDE.

Sandra with classroom
“Because of their range of titles and experience, Sandra and Rich captivated their audiences from grades K-8.” Jessica Klinker Immaculate Conception School

RESOURCES:

  • Common-core aligned Educator Guide to Bound By Ice: A TRUE NORTH POLE SURVIVAL STORY
  • Common-core aligned Educator Guide to Blood Brother: Jonathan Daniels and His Sacrifice for Civil Rights
  • Common-core aligned Educator Guide to Babe Conquers the World
  • Common-core aligned Educator Guide to Muckers
  • The “real story behind the story” of Muckers
  • Educator Guide to Little Joe by U.S. Dept. of Agriculture’s Ag in the Classroom (complete with a chapter-by-chapter vo-cow-bulary journal!)