What's New?

My next book, a biography of Alexander Hamilton, will be available March 7, 2017.

I will be at the Texas Library Association Conference, April 19-22, 2017.

I will be at the Tucson Festival of Books, March 10-12, 2017.

The Girl from the Tar Paper School won the 2015 Jane Addams Book Award.

The Girl from the Tar Paper School won the 2015 Carter G. Woodson Book Award.






Subscribe to my Special Deals Newsletter and I will let you know when new titles are available at a special price.

"An informative yet accessible biography of the famed Founding Father." School Library Journal

A Junior Library Guild Selection!

Read more about Alexander Hamilton

Click here to learn more about the Making of America series.

Click here for Alexander Hamilton Teaching Resources


The Girl from the Tar Paper School won numerous awards and honors.

"An extraordinary and inspiring story." Salt Lake City Tribune

Read more about The Girl From The Tar Paper School.


Starred Reviews.

"A thoughtful reminder of America's debt to Quakerism, Kanefield’s book vividly captures Suzy Wright’s life and liberty." The Washington Post.

Read more about The Extraordinary Suzy Wright.


Read more about Free to Be.


Multiple Honors.

"A suspenseful tale of friendship and love."Hadassah Magazine.

Read more about Rivka's Way.


A Junior Library Guild Selection

"An extraordinary book . . . that could well be mind-blowing to the thoughtful young reader who is ready to move beyond the black-and-white notion that a particular act is wrong simply because it is illegal."Richie Partington, book blogger.

Read more about Guilty?


With sign language--nimble and evocative--at its center, Turn On the Light So I Can Hear is about reaching across distances, the transformative powers of art, and finding a place to belong.

Read more about Turn on the Light so I Can Hear.


A story of raising children, legal ethics, and fixing what is broken.

Read more about Lawyers Never Lie.




Here's what happens when six teenagers act on their optimism and attempt the impossible.

Read more about Knights of the Square Table.



A time travel adventure!

Read more about Pretty Maids in a Row.



A gold rush mystery.

Read more about A Pocket Full of Gold.



Rivalry on the soccer field.

Read more about Michael's Mighty Kick.


Welcome to my website! I write novels, short stories, essays, stories for children, nonfiction for both children and adults, and lots of legal briefs. Here is some more information about me.

Click here for Teaching Resources for Alexander Hamilton: The Making of America

Visit the Barbara Johns Information Website.

Click here for Teaching Resources for Guilty? Crime, Punishment, and the Changing Face of Justice.