Sourcebooks Fire has announced that, due to criticisms and concerns being voiced via social media by members of the children’s book community, author Kosoko Jackson has requested that the company withdraw publication of his debut YA historical novel, A Place for Wolves. The book will no longer be released on March 26, as initially scheduled.
Although the book had been positioned as an #OwnVoices LGBTQ romance, discussion of the novel’s problematic representation of the Kosovo War, genocide, and Muslim characters began escalating on Twitter and on Goodreads earlier this week.
This afternoon, Jackson made an official statement on his Twitter account and set his website to “maintenance mode.” A note of apology by Jackson reads, “While dealing with the hurt my debut has caused and coming up with a plan of action of how to fix the pain I’ve caused with my words, my site is currently under maintenance. I’ll have an update soon. Thanks for your patience and for those who I hurt with my words, especially the Muslim readers, teens, and community members, I’m sorry.”
The Jackson controversy comes on the heels of the postponement of fellow debut author Amélie Wen Zhao’s YA fantasy novel, Blood Heir, which had been scheduled for publication in June by Random House’s Delacorte imprint.