Kiara Valdez is an assistant editor at First Second Books. She was born and raised in New York City (shout out to Washington Heights) and has been an avid comics reader all her life. She graduated Williams College with a double major in English Literature and Japanese, and spends her free time reading, writing, and enjoying a long list of other hobbies she can’t keep up with.
Though she is proud of every book she’s worked on at First Second, she especially enjoyed working on the Cucumber Quest series, Check, Please!: #Hockey, Animus, Kiss Number 8, and Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me. For her own list she is only looking for graphic novels and is mostly focused on middle grade and young adult. She is open to all genres but is especially interested in magical realism, memoir, #ownvoices stories (especially those from Latinx creators), and stories with LGBTQ+ characters and romance. She likes stories that feel contemporary, real, and are grounded in our world regardless of the genre it’s in, and is a sucker for well-done resolutions/happy endings. Kiara is also able to take pitches for her colleagues in YA and MG.