Pat Schmatz

Pat Schmatz

Minneapolis young-adult author Pat Schmatz has won the 2015 Tiptree Literary Award for her book, "Lizard Radio," published by Candlewick Press.

The 25-year-old award annually goes to a book that expands and explores readers' understanding of gender. It was established by writers Karen Joy Fowler and Pat Murphy, and was named for Alice B. Sheldon, who wrote under the pseudonym James Tiptree, Jr. -- choosing a masculine name in order to break down the barriers between women's fiction and men's fiction.

"Lizard Radio" is the speculative fiction coming-of-age story of 15-year-old Kivali, who is unsure of her origins and identity. Boy or girl? Human or lizard? Schmatz's previous book, "Bluefish," "has all the hallmarks of a classic," said School Library Journal.

Schmatz grew up in Wisconsin and decided to be a writer after reading S.E. Hinton's "The Outsiders."

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