Friday, February 12, 2016

Bethanie Murguia

Bethanie Deeney Murguia was raised in Western New York near the Grand Canyon of the East and many, many cows. After graduating Summa Cum Laude from the University of Rochester with a BA in psychology and fine art, she moved to New York City where she worked as an art director for Hearst Magazines. While in New York, Bethanie received her MFA in Illustration from the School of Visual Arts.

Murguia now lives in the Bay Area where she has worked for a variety of design and marketing firms. Her illustrations have appeared on packaging and in various children’s publications, including Ladybug and My Big Backyard. Since 2011, she has focused exclusively on writing and illustrating picture books. Her illustrations and books have been honored with numerous accolades, including Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Best Book Awards and Bank Street College Best Books of the Year. Her new book is Cockatoo, Too.

Recently I asked Murguia about what she was reading. Her reply:
There are currently two books on my nightstand. The first is The Adventures of Miss Petitfour, by Anne Michaels. What’s not to adore about a book in which the main character and her sixteen cats fly, ala Mary Poppins, with the aid of various tablecloths? My six year old and I are enjoying it together. It’s delightfully written, fun to read aloud, and we love Miss Petitfour’s antics.

The second is A Man Called Ove, by Fredrik Backman. I picked this one up from a tiny bookstore while on vacation. I’ve really enjoying getting to know the cast of characters, including curmudgeonly Ove. They’re all rendered with humor and compassion. Ove’s wife believes that in relationships, over time, you come to love people's familiar imperfections more than the things that initially attracted you. That’s exactly how I feel about these characters as I’m nearing the end of the book.
Visit Bethanie Deeney Murguia's website.

--Marshal Zeringue