Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor talks about her children's book, "Turning Pages: My Life Story", during the Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor out with 2 new books

September 01, 2018 - 5:26 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor got some unsolicited health advice the last time she wrote a book.

The justice was diagnosed with diabetes as a child and discussed it as part of her 2013 autobiography, "My Beloved World."

Sotomayor said Saturday in an interview with The Associated Press that the book prompted a diabetic grandmother to write her. She said she was using newer technology to manage her diabetes. She told Sotomayor: "If I can do it you can do it too."

Sotomayor said that pushed her to explore using the technology she does now, which uses a sensor implanted in her stomach.

The justice was speaking ahead of the publication next week of two new books she's written: an autobiography for elementary school readers and an abridged version of her memoir for middle school readers, "The Beloved World of Sonia Sotomayor." Now, when she talks about her diabetes in the middle school book she notes she uses a continuous glucose monitor.

Sotomayor, the Supreme Court's first Latina justice, will be traveling around the country to promote the new books. In January she'll go to Puerto Rico, where her family is from and which she writes about. Sotomayor had to cancel a planned trip to the island earlier this year because she broke her shoulder and needed surgery.

On Saturday she spoke about the books at the Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington, telling a packed audience that reading books "opened the world to me." The picture book she has written, also out this week and called "Turning Pages: My Life Story," is her life story told through books that shaped her, from the comic book superheros that gave her the courage as a child to give herself insulin shots to "Nancy Drew," which she writes "fired my imagination." The book is simultaneously being published in Spanish.

Sotomayor spoke with Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden and also answered audience questions. Asked by a father about how to help his son appreciate feminism, the third female Supreme Court justice answered in part by recommending the recent documentary "RBG" about her colleague Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a legal trailblazer in the area of women's rights.

To a 9-year-old girl who asked for advice on becoming president, Sotomayor recommended studying hard. "You have to read a lot about a lot of things, especially if you're president," Sotomayor said to laughter and then sustained applause from a crowd sitting less than a mile from the White House.

Asked how she retains her "hopeful outlook in these challenging times," she answered: "We don't have a choice, do we?" She noted that because she's a justice she can't get involved in politics. "But you can," she said. "So get out there and make a better world."

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