Children's Literature

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  • The worlds of Lori Nix

    Chasing Ray
    colleen
    19 Apr 2015 | 6:00 pm
    Be warned- Lori Nix’s dioramas are very appealing. Once you catch a glimpse of her world-making you won’t want to leave. From Womankind: Lori Nix constructs hand-made worlds from her living room, complex dioramas sculpted out of foam board, paint, plaster and wood. She lives with power tools scattered throughout her apartment, and a chop saw under her kitchen table. Her worlds, as small as 50 centimetres and as large as 182 centimetres in diameter, take time; nine years to build The City, a series of deserted architectural interiors, which she calls a “safe space to think about…
  • Week in Review, April 20th-24th

    The Horn Book
    Katie Bircher
    24 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    This week on hbook.com… From the May/June issue of The Horn Book Magazine: “Apples to Elephants: Artists in Animation” by Betsy Bird (aka Fuse #8) Children’s Books Boston is now on Facebook — come say hi! Over at YouTube, Roger talks about attending the ALSC/CBC Day of Diversity Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: I Don’t Like Koala by Sean Ferrell; illus. by Charles Santoso Fiction: Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman Nonfiction: How to Pee: Potty Training for Boys by Todd Spector; illus. by Arree Chung App: WWF Together Read Roger: “Selfie Sweepstakes…
  • 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #429: Featuring Charles Santoso

    Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast
    jules
    25 Apr 2015 | 11:01 pm
    – From Sean Ferrell’s I Don’t Like Koala(Click to see spread in its entirety)   – From Jessica Young’s Spy Guy(Click to enlarge)   I’ve got a review over at BookPage of Sean Ferrell’s I Don’t Like Koala (Atheneum, April 2015), illustrated by Charles Santoso. That is here, and I’ve got some art from the book here today at 7-Imp. To boot, I’ve got some illustrations from another Santoso-illustrated book, Jessica Young’s Spy Guy, coming to bookshelves in May from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the story of a very loud, very…
  • Psst. Enjoying The Forever Girls?

    Finding Wonderland: The WritingYA Weblog
    tanita✿davis
    25 Apr 2015 | 1:36 pm
    Click to embiggen. Happy Weekend! Enjoy The Forever Girls, a little tale by graphic novelist and cartoonist (& Melissa Wiley's beau) Scott Peterson, with artwork by artist and animator Monica Bruenjes. So much to love here: Snow White is seriously Nordic, Rapunzel can give you whiplash with her braids, Cinderella looks like she's annoyed to be putting up with fairytale nonsense again, and I love the expression on Wendy's face, and that she carries a Union Jack umbrella - and beats on annoying creatures with it. Long live fractured - and restructured - fairytales, and doughty heroines. This…
  • Edwards Award: Definitions

    A Chair, A Fireplace, & A Tea Cozy
    Liz B
    21 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    And a little more about the Edwards Award, from the YALSA website.Definitions"Author" may be an individual or a co-author. The author must be living at the time of the nomination. In the case of co-authors, one must be living. If an author continues to write books of interest and appeal to young adults, then he or she may receive the award more than once as warranted, as long as it is not more frequently than every six years."Book or books" indicates either a title or titles written specifically for young adults, or those titles written for adults, which continue to be requested and read by…
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    The Horn Book

  • Week in Review, April 20th-24th

    Katie Bircher
    24 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    This week on hbook.com… From the May/June issue of The Horn Book Magazine: “Apples to Elephants: Artists in Animation” by Betsy Bird (aka Fuse #8) Children’s Books Boston is now on Facebook — come say hi! Over at YouTube, Roger talks about attending the ALSC/CBC Day of Diversity Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: I Don’t Like Koala by Sean Ferrell; illus. by Charles Santoso Fiction: Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman Nonfiction: How to Pee: Potty Training for Boys by Todd Spector; illus. by Arree Chung App: WWF Together Read Roger: “Selfie Sweepstakes…
  • Please pass the beignets

    Katie Bircher
    24 Apr 2015 | 9:00 am
    In our upcoming May/June issue, we review two nonfiction books starring jazz greats from the Big Easy: How Jelly Roll Morton Invented Jazz and Trombone Shorty. Now I’m nostalgic for NOLA, particularly its incredible live music scene! I can’t wait to get back to Frenchmen St. The annual — and beloved — New Orleans Jazz Festival starts today. If (like me) you can’t make it, put on some jazz and check out How Jelly Roll Morton Invented Jazz, Trombone Shorty, or one of these other toe-tapping picture books recommended by The Horn Book Magazine:   Fiction The imaginary…
  • WWF Together app review

    Katie Bircher
    23 Apr 2015 | 11:47 am
    With Earth Day‘s 45th anniversary celebration yesterday, it seems a good time to review the World Wildlife Fund’s lovely awareness-raising app WWF Together (2013). The app introduces sixteen endangered species from around the world, each characterized with a quality emphasizing its uniqueness: e.g., panda (“charisma”), elephant (“intelligence”), marine turtle (“longevity”), tiger (“solitude”). Each animal receives its own interactive “story,” comprised of stats (population numbers in the wild; habitat; weight and length;…
  • Review of Touch the Brightest Star

    Susan Dove Lempke
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:59 am
    Touch the Brightest Star by Christie Matheson; 
illus. by the author Preschool   Greenwillow   40 pp. 5/15   978-0-06-227447-2   $15.99   g The little bluebird from Tap the Magic Tree (rev. 1/14) flies across the first double-page spread as sunset falls: “Magic happens every night. / First wave good-bye to the sun’s bright light.” In the spacious collage illustrations, swaths of pink and purple streak across the bottom of the page, shading to darker blue at the top, and a birch tree stands off to the far left. Turn the page and the reader is instructed to “gently press the…
  • Review of Trombone Shorty

    Betty Carter
    22 Apr 2015 | 1:49 pm
    Trombone Shorty by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews; illus. by Bryan Collier Primary   Abrams   40 pp. 4/15   978-1-4197-1465-8   $17.95 In New Orleans parlance, “Where y’at?” means “hello.” As an opening greeting (repeated three times, creating a jazzy beat), it also signals the beginning of this conversational and personable 
autobiography. Andrews, a.k.a. Trombone Shorty, concentrates on his younger years: growing up in Tremé, a neighborhood of New Orleans known for its close-knit community and commitment to music; making his own instruments before acquiring and…
 
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    Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast

  • 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #429: Featuring Charles Santoso

    jules
    25 Apr 2015 | 11:01 pm
    – From Sean Ferrell’s I Don’t Like Koala(Click to see spread in its entirety)   – From Jessica Young’s Spy Guy(Click to enlarge)   I’ve got a review over at BookPage of Sean Ferrell’s I Don’t Like Koala (Atheneum, April 2015), illustrated by Charles Santoso. That is here, and I’ve got some art from the book here today at 7-Imp. To boot, I’ve got some illustrations from another Santoso-illustrated book, Jessica Young’s Spy Guy, coming to bookshelves in May from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the story of a very loud, very…
  • What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Jan De Kinder

    jules
    23 Apr 2015 | 11:01 pm
    (Click to enlarge spread) Today over at Kirkus, I have a round-up of new nonfiction (mostly) picture books. That is here, and next week here at 7-Imp I’ll have art from each book. Last week, I wrote here about a Belgian import, Jan De Kinder’s Red (Eerdmans, March 2015). Today, I’m following up with some art from the book. Enjoy. “It’s like magic. A snap of the fingers, and his cheeks start glowing. Tommy’s face is as red as a fire truck. ‘Leave me alone!’ Tommy says again. Paul laughs.Every time Paul laughs, Tommy gets a little…
  • A Raschka Moment

    jules
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:52 am
        Last week, I chatted over at Kirkus with Paul B. Janeczko about The Death of the Hat: A Brief History of Poetry in 50 Objects (Candlewick, March 2015), illustrated by Chris Raschka. So today I am following up with two spreads from the book. Enjoy!   (Click to see spread in its entirety)   (Click to enlarge)   THE DEATH OF A HAT. Compilation copyright © 2015 by Paul B. Janeczko. Illustrations copyright © 2015 by Chris Raschka. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA. “The Dismantled Ship” by Walt Whitman. “Street…
  • Seven Questions Over Breakfast with Marie-Louise Gay

    jules
    20 Apr 2015 | 11:01 pm
    “I shake my ideas around and turn them upside down and look at them flying out the window like a flock of birds. Suddenly, I know who lives in the forest … a giant,a shy young giant with birds nesting in his hair. His story starts here …”   If you saw last year’s Any Questions?, written and illustrated by Canadian Marie-Louise Gay, who has been nominated for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award and the Hans Christian Andersen Award, you may recognize the above illustration. It’s from the book, and it’s Marie-Louise herself, hard at work in her…
  • 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #428: FeaturingBeatrice Alemagna and Sergio García Sánchez

    jules
    18 Apr 2015 | 11:01 pm
    – From Nadja Spiegelman’s and Sergio García Sánchez’sLost in NYC: A Subway Adventure   – From Beatrice Alemagna’s Little Big Boubo(Click to enlarge)   I’m kickin’ it all international today with Italian author-illustrator Beatrice Alemagna, born in Bologna, and Sergio García Sánchez, who is a cartoonist from Spain. If I had a dime for every time an illustrator here at 7-Imp has named Beatrice Alemagna as an inspiration, well … I’d be in Italy now. Yep. Why not? Italy sounds good right about now. Last year she wrote and…
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    Finding Wonderland: The WritingYA Weblog

  • Psst. Enjoying The Forever Girls?

    tanita✿davis
    25 Apr 2015 | 1:36 pm
    Click to embiggen. Happy Weekend! Enjoy The Forever Girls, a little tale by graphic novelist and cartoonist (& Melissa Wiley's beau) Scott Peterson, with artwork by artist and animator Monica Bruenjes. So much to love here: Snow White is seriously Nordic, Rapunzel can give you whiplash with her braids, Cinderella looks like she's annoyed to be putting up with fairytale nonsense again, and I love the expression on Wendy's face, and that she carries a Union Jack umbrella - and beats on annoying creatures with it. Long live fractured - and restructured - fairytales, and doughty heroines. This…
  • TURNING PAGES: UNDERTOW by MICHAEL BUCKLEY

    tanita✿davis
    24 Apr 2015 | 12:30 am
    I've read two adventures lately which I can only describe as "cinematic." There's so much chaotic action, I can easily imagine the novel translating itself to film - and the book trailer at the bottom goes right along with that -- this would make a superb movie hook. I'm not entirely certain that the chaos/adventure thing makes for the most complete story arc in a book - I have a feeling that this is the beginning of a series - but this is a capital 'A' imaginative adventure of the watery kind - with a deadly edge. Summary: Lyric Walker was there the day the Alphas came up out of the waves…
  • IN TANDEM: HUSH, by JACQUELINE WOODSON

    tanita✿davis
    23 Apr 2015 | 8:00 am
    Welcome to another edition of In Tandem, the read-and-review blog series where both A.F. and I give our on-the-spot commentary as we read and team blog a book together. (You can feel free to guess which of us is the yellow owl and which of us is the purple owl...we're not telling!)Whenever book awards are announced, we're intrigued -- and sometimes bewildered. There are SO many books published every year, it's hard to keep up with them based on buzz and word of mouth. Oftentimes many of the weighty "worthies" which are awarded are virtual unknowns to us -- but not this time. When this year's…
  • Themed Cybils Reading Lists!

    Sarah Stevenson
    20 Apr 2015 | 8:30 am
    If you haven't been over to the Cybils blog in a while, you're missing out--there's been regularly posted content, including book reviews, featured bloggers, and interviews with this year's award winners. AND, there is a new, fun recurring feature: themed book lists by this year's volunteers of Cybils-nominated titles (including finalists and winners). I'll be contributing my own list soon, but in the meantime, here's what they've posted so far:Read-Aloud Non-FictionRobot Stories for Elementary ReadersRead Aloud Fiction Picture BooksKid-Friendly BiographiesFun and Funny Fantasy Read Alouds…
  • TURNING PAGES: THE LUMBERJANES Vol 1, by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, Brooke Allen, and Shannon Watters

    tanita✿davis
    17 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    It's a truth acknowledged universally &tc. that I am not the artsy person in this blogging duo. A.F. - she draws, she's Cybil'd, she has the degree, etc. - so she has the relationships with the graphic novel companies and the graphic novels are her schtick. I... don't know from graphic novels really, and as I've said before, when I was a kid, the only comic books we got were, like, someone's horrible version of the New Testament in graphic form. It was pretty guy-centric, which ironically is probably why (in addition to the muddy artwork and cheap paper) it wasn't something I wanted to read…
 
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    A Chair, A Fireplace, & A Tea Cozy

  • Edwards Award: Definitions

    Liz B
    21 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    And a little more about the Edwards Award, from the YALSA website.Definitions"Author" may be an individual or a co-author. The author must be living at the time of the nomination. In the case of co-authors, one must be living. If an author continues to write books of interest and appeal to young adults, then he or she may receive the award more than once as warranted, as long as it is not more frequently than every six years."Book or books" indicates either a title or titles written specifically for young adults, or those titles written for adults, which continue to be requested and read by…
  • Edwards Award: Terms and Committee Makeup

    Liz B
    15 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    And a little more about the Edwards Award, from the YALSA website. While this may be the boring stuff, it's still important to know how this all works. For example, that it's virtual and there are five members; and the other YALSA policies that apply.TermsThe award is given annually to an author whose book or books, over a period of time, have been accepted by young adults as an authentic voice that continues to illuminate their experiences and emotions, giving insight into their lives. The book or books should enable them to understand themselves, the world in which they live, and their…
  • Review: Gone Crazy in Alabama

    Liz B
    14 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    Gone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia. Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollins. 2015. Reviewed from ARC. Companion to One Crazy Summer (2010) and P.S. Be Eleven (2013).The Plot: It's the summer of 1969, and sisters Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern are back. This time, they're off to spend the summer in the south, in Alabama, with their grandmother and great grandmother. They will learn about the things that keep family together, and what keeps family apart. And they'll have fun and tears along the way.The Good: When I wrote about One Crazy Summer, about the sisters spending the summer of…
  • Review: All The Rage

    Liz B
    8 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    All the Rage by Courtney Summers. St. Martin's Griffin. 2015. Reviewed from ARC.The Plot: Romy is an outsider in her small town for so many reasons. Her father, the drunk; her mother, who married too young and just moved in with her new boyfriend. The new boyfriend who has never really held a full time job, living off government checks in the shabby house he inherited from his mother.And at school, Romy is known as a liar, a target for ridicule and mockery.She can escape to her work in a small diner, where people know her and like her and she doesn't have all the baggage of who her…
  • Edwards Award: About and Justification

    Liz B
    7 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    Why, what is the award about?"The Margaret A. Edwards Award, established in 1988, honors an author, as well as a specific body of his or her work, for significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature. The annual award is administered by YALSA and sponsored by School Library Journal magazine. It recognizes an author's work in helping adolescents become aware of themselves and addressing questions about their role and importance in relationships, society, and in the world.  The Edwards award celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2013."And the justification for the Award?"ALA's…
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    educating alice

  • Two Exciting Fall Books To Look Forward To

    medinger
    26 Apr 2015 | 8:30 am
    This week I received some especially lovely mailings of two forthcoming books. First of all, there was Laura Amy Schlitz’s The Hired Girl (which I have read and wrote enthusiastically about here). The ARC came most appropriately with a small notebook and a dainty white handkerchief. How perfect for a book written as a journal from the perspective of an aspirational farm girl. And then there was a book I’ve known was in the works for some time. I’m thrilled that it is coming out this fall and can’t wait to read it. This is M. T. Anderson’s Symphony for the City…
  • Kids and Ironic Humor

    medinger
    23 Apr 2015 | 10:30 am
    Years ago I wrote an article, “Pets and Other Fishy Books” in which I took a look at kids’ reactions to subversive books. Among others I wrote about my class’s response to Chris Raschka’s Arlene Sardine: Most unexpected to me was their reaction to Chris Raschka’s Arlene Sardine. Assuming it was another piscatorial preschool book along the lines of Swimmy or Rainbow Fish, I quickly touched upon and then skipped right past it at the bookstore. It was only when I heard that it was something quite different, ironic perhaps, that I returned for a proper look. Any…
  • International Children’s Books Considered

    medinger
    19 Apr 2015 | 4:18 am
    Yesterday I attended “Where the Wild Books Are” at the New School here in NYC. Organizers Etienne Delessert and Steven Guarnaccia (who have both created some of my favorite books of all time) put together a very worthwhile Saturday afternoon (important because we were all in a dark auditorium on a spectacularly beautiful spring day). Things opened with children’s literature expert Leonard S. Marcus giving an historical overview of international children’s books in the American publishing world. He was followed by Betsy Bird who spoke of her experience at the…
  • 2015 Children’s Africana Book Award Winner is…

    medinger
    18 Apr 2015 | 2:28 am
    Andrea Pinkney’s The Red Pencil!  I reviewed this fine book for the New York Times and am delighted to see this. Congratulations, Andrea and Little Brown Books for Young Readers!
  • More on the BBC’s adaptation of Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

    medinger
    15 Apr 2015 | 1:30 am
    Thanks, Vickester51Corner, for alerting me to an informative write-up of the preview of the forthcoming series here.
 
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    Chasing Ray

  • 2 gorgeous pictures books from Enchanted Lion

    colleen
    22 Apr 2015 | 10:20 pm
    I am consistently impressed with the picture books published by Enchanted Lion Books. Most recently I received copies of Beastly Verse by Joohee Yoon and The World in a Second by Isabel Martin with illustrations by Bernard Carvalho. The Yoon book is the more traditional—a poetry collection that includes works from Lewis Carroll, William Blake and Laura E. Richards. Here’s a bit of “The Yake” from Hilaire Belloc: As a friend to the children commend me the Yak, You will find it exactly the thing; It will carry and fetch, you can ride on its back, Or lead it about with a…
  • The worlds of Lori Nix

    colleen
    19 Apr 2015 | 6:00 pm
    Be warned- Lori Nix’s dioramas are very appealing. Once you catch a glimpse of her world-making you won’t want to leave. From Womankind: Lori Nix constructs hand-made worlds from her living room, complex dioramas sculpted out of foam board, paint, plaster and wood. She lives with power tools scattered throughout her apartment, and a chop saw under her kitchen table. Her worlds, as small as 50 centimetres and as large as 182 centimetres in diameter, take time; nine years to build The City, a series of deserted architectural interiors, which she calls a “safe space to think about…
  • Assessing March on the resolution scale

    colleen
    17 Apr 2015 | 11:40 pm
    March was a really weird month. I had a plan for what I wanted to get done and then everything was tossed out the window when I heard from the State of Alaska Library, Archives and Museum. I worked with them last year to develop the new aviation exhibit and early last month they contacted me with the outline and request for labels. As the labels are very specific, and very specific word counts, and the whole thing had to be done by the end of the month, it ate up a lot of my time. I’m thrilled to be co-curating this project so I was happy to do whatever was necessary (and the paycheck…
  • The Modern Ark project

    colleen
    14 Apr 2015 | 5:23 pm
    From Audubon a look at photographer Joel Sartore’s plan to capture close-up images of every captive species on Earth: Sartore finds comfort in the species that have thus far been rescued from the brink: giant pandas, black-footed ferrets, California Condors, Whooping Cranes. Those animals’ populations remain alarmingly low—in the mere hundreds—but they might have disappeared altogether if not for publicity, their natural charisma, and determined efforts to save them. “It’s tough to get people to pay attention, because it just doesn’t affect their daily lives. They figure,…
  • The library’s Hell section

    colleen
    12 Apr 2015 | 8:25 pm
    From a recent article in Smithsonian Magazine on the rehabilitation of the Marquis de Sade and a visit with his modern descendant, Count Hugues de Sade: The family’s embrace of their ancestor is such that Hugues named his eldest son, now 39, Donatien, a first in generations. “We’re proud of the marquis,” Hugues said. “And why not? Today, he is considered a great philosopher. His works are published by the most prestigious publishing house in France, Gallimard. There are conferences about him at the Sorbonne. He is the subject of university theses, and is studied by high-school…
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    Books for Boys - Children's Adventure & Mystery Author Max Elliot Anderson

  • Middle Grade Book Trailers

    max
    26 Apr 2015 | 11:29 am
    One of the many elements provided to help promote my middle grade action adventures & mysteries, I've produced a number of video book trailers.Catch all the excitement and see what young readers are talking about.The Accidental Adventures - Coming July 2015https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHjJX7IYlqwRiver Rampagehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mxoWP4QmVJQLegend of The White Wolfhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovJdn3KI1q8Lost Island Smugglershttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUTyzOwEJLgNorth Woods Poachershttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrJF8x9gqBwCaptain Jack's…
  • Back to Writing Again

    max
    13 Apr 2015 | 7:11 am
    I’m almost fully recovered from hernia surgery. I knew I had one obvious spot but my surgeon thought the other side might need fixing, too. We had agreed on laparoscopic surgery in order not to have another big opening like I had for a burst appendix in October. Surgery was on Monday, March 30, and it took 3 ½ hours. That’s because, once inside, there were four hernia patches that needed repair. So I got worked over pretty well. And with all the smaller incisions, to make openings for the robot’s several instrument and camera needs, I look more like the loser in a knife…
  • A Special Message To Parents, Grandparents, Teachers, or Anyone Who Cares About Children

    max
    29 Mar 2015 | 10:49 am
    In 2001, I made a conscious decision to write adventures & mysteries for children. My target was middle grade readers. Why? It’s that stage in life when they are still kids while, at the same time, they can’t wait to be all grown up.The down side to this age is it also is a time when children, especially boys, begin falling away from reading in favor of video games, TV, videos, computers, and other electronic devices. So how could my books make a difference at this critical time of development?I grew up hating to read. We didn’t have much in the way of electronics back then, but…
  • Vote for This Blog as Blog of The Month

    max
    20 Mar 2015 | 4:54 am
    Vote for This Blog as Blog of The Month This blog has been nominated for Blog of The Month at the popular Book Fun Magazine. Please take a minute to vote for it now. See the voting boxes on the Home page, lower right hand column of  http://www.bookfun.org where you see this picture. Thank you!
  • Status of Projects

    max
    10 Mar 2015 | 9:08 am
    New covers are being developed for the Sam Cooper Adventure Series and a 4th title will soon be released with the original three books at Elk Lake Publishing. Work continues on covers and the book interiors for the first four books in the Accidental Adventure Series. Plans call for six books in each series. Editing on all the new books is ongoing at the publisher now along with additional writing here for these two exciting action and adventure books for middle grade readers. I hope to share the new covers on this blog soon.
 
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    Wands and Worlds

  • So you want to write a children's book?

    1 Apr 2015 | 7:09 am
    As a publisher, I subscribe to a lot of book publishing and marketing newsletters. Yesterday, I received the following email from two of those newsletters:Ever wanted to write a children’s book?If so, publishing your work as an e-book on Amazon’s Kindle platform is a great way to go – and now is a great time to get started.The children's e-book market is up 475% this year alone, which makes it one of the fastest-growing book categories on Amazon.Plus, once you know a simple formula, children’s books are one of the easiest types of books to write.To discover how to get started writing…
  • Book Review: Smek for President

    26 Feb 2015 | 12:03 pm
    Smek for Presidentby Adam RexScience fiction for kids is rare enough; truly funny middle-grade science fiction is even rarer. In fact, off the top of my head I can only think of one book in the hilarious middle-grade science fiction genre: The True Meaning of Smekday. Now that number has doubled, with the publication of a worthy sequel, Smek for President.If you haven't read The True Meaning of Smekday, why not? Go forth and read it now! It's a great road-trip buddy comedy about a girl and an alien on the run from the evil alien overlords.Beyond this point there will be spoilers for the…
  • 2014 Andre Norton Award Nominees

    20 Feb 2015 | 10:27 am
    The 2014 Nebula Award nominees have been announced, and with it the nominees for the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy. The Nebula and Andre Norton awards are given by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Two of the Andre Norton nominees were also Cybils Awards finalists: Salvage, by Alexandra Duncan, and Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future, by A.S. King. As a Cybils judge, I read both books and they're both excellent, although very different, books. I've also read Love Is the Drug, by Alaya Dawn Johnson, and loved that one as well.Here's the…
  • Book Review: The Last Wild/The Dark Wild

    13 Feb 2015 | 8:17 am
    I read both of these books together, so I'm going to do what I rarely do and review them together. If you haven't read the first book, you might want to stop after my review of The Last Wild, because my review of The Dark Wild will, of necessity, have spoilers for the first book.The Last Wildby Piers TordayIn a dystopian future, all animals have died out from an illness called "red-eye" that mutated to spread throughout the animal populations. The only animals still living are a few hardy species like cockroaches. Even the bees are dead, which means that there are no more food crops. The only…
  • Don't overlook these books!

    5 Jan 2015 | 9:00 am
    I love the seven books my panel selected as the finalists for YA Speculative Fiction. I'm really proud of our shortlist as a representation of the best YA Spec Fic books of 2014. However, there are always the ones that got away, the ones that didn't quite make it. When seven people are deliberating, compromises have to be made, and sometimes, no matter how passionate you are about a book, you can't convince your fellow judges. Here are some of the 2014 Cybils nominees that I loved, but which didn't make the cut as finalists: Divided We Fall Trilogy: Book 1: Divided We Fall Trent ReedyThis is…
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    American Indians in Children's Literature (AICL)

  • Children's Books that Mock Native Names Pave the Way for Adam Sandler's Satire

    26 Apr 2015 | 7:37 am
    On Thursday (April 23, 2015), Vince Shilling, writing at Indian Country Today, broke a news story that was quickly picked up by social media sites (like Gawker) and then news media, too (like CNN, and in the UK, the Guardian).Shilling's story is about Native actors walking off the set of Adam Sandler's new movie, The Ridiculous Six, because of the ways the script denigrates Native women and mocks Native culture via the names created for Native characters and in the dialogue: Never Wears Bra (in an earlier version of the script, her name was Sits on Face), Strawberry Tits, Stiff In…
  • Daniel Jose Older's SHADOWSHAPER

    23 Apr 2015 | 1:53 pm
    Last year I read Daniel Jose Older's excellent essay in Buzzfeed Books. Titled "Diversity is Not Enough: Race, Power, Publishing," it was shared widely in my social media networks. I started following him on Twitter, and learned that he had a young adult book in the works. By then I'd already read Salsa Nocturna and loved it. His is the kind of writing that stays in your head and heart.I've now read his young adult novel, Shadowshaper, and am writing about it here. Older is not Native, and his book is not one that would be categorized as a book about Native peoples. There are, however,…
  • Willa Strayhorn's THE WAY WE BARED OUR SOULS

    23 Apr 2015 | 7:01 am
    Willa Strayhorn's The Way We Bared Our Souls opens with a deeply problematic scene. The characters in the story are inside a "ceremonial kiva" (p. 1). Chronologically, this scene is from the last part of the story Strayhorn tells.Told from the viewpoint of Consuelo (called Lo for short), an "Anglo, not Hispanic" (p. 11) character, she is in this "ceremonial kiva" with three others. Missing is Kaya, "the girl who felt no pain" (p. 1).Kaya, we learn later, is "Pueblo on her mom's side and Navajo on her dad's" (p. 66). Of course, she's got high cheekbones. She's not in that opening scene,…
  • THANKSGIVING THIEF (Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew #16)

    21 Apr 2015 | 4:33 pm
    There are many ways I could critique Thanksgiving Thief. We could start with the cover:Nothing wrong, we might say, but chapter one is called "Cool Costumes" and introduces the three kids on the cover to a "Native American girl" named Mary who is new to the school and providing them headbands (the "cool costumes") they'll wear in the school pageant. Mary's not on the cover. Maybe she shouldn't be, though, because she's not part of the series.Here's how Mary is introduced to readers (p. 2):Bess twirled around in front of Nancy's mirror and looked at the beaded leather dress she was wearing. "I…
  • Teddy Anderson's THE MEDICINE WHEEL: STORIES OF A HOOP DANCER

    20 Apr 2015 | 8:44 am
    Several people in Canada have written to ask me about a self-published book that is being promoted via social media.From the author's website is this:"Medicine Wheel: Stories of a Hoop Dancer" is a recently published children's book written by Teddy Anderson, a professional hoop dancer of the First Nation's style who has performed in 20 countries across the world. His performances, as well as the book, teach the concept of using the First Nation's symbol of the Medicine Wheel."Performing in a "First Nation's style" --- is a huge red flag. Anderson isn't saying he's Native, but he is using his…
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    Bildungsroman

  • Poetry Friday: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

    24 Apr 2015 | 6:00 am
    Compose a haiku in honor of a person you admire.You are spiky spring, humming summer, wings that beatback ghosts of winter.This appears on page 310 of the novel Bone Gap by Laura Ruby.View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.Learn more about Poetry Friday.
  • Poetry Friday: Coming Awake by D.H. Lawrence

    15 Apr 2015 | 6:56 pm
    When I woke, the lake-lights were quivering on the wall, The sunshine swam in a shoal across and across, And a hairy, big bee hung over the primulas In the window, his body black fur, and the sound of him cross. There was something I ought to remember: and yet I did not remember. Why should I? The running lights And the airy primulas, oblivious Of the impending bee - they were fair enough sights. - Coming Awake by D.H. LawrenceView all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.Learn more about Poetry Friday.
  • Poetry Friday: Try by Jillian Edwards

    10 Apr 2015 | 6:00 am
    If you were a melodyI'd sing you all the timeAnd if your hands were poetryI'd memorize every lineAnd if every look you gave me wereA different hue or shade of colorI'd learn how to paint youYou know I'd tryAnd if you were words in a storyYou'd be in a book that's overdueThat's somewhere hidden in my closetLooked a million times for youAnd if you were just one dayYou'd be the very first of MayAnd I'd be sunlight in your skiesOr at least I'd try- selected lyrics from Try by Jillian EdwardsIf you can't see the media player embedded above, click here to…
  • Poetry Friday: Room by Jillian Edwards

    3 Apr 2015 | 6:00 am
    With all of my heart, I'm racingWatch the page as it turns outYou would read all of me had you the chanceYou'd never put me downPlease don't put me downI get a little bit restlessYou just gotta give me timeI get a little bit insecure, a little bit bentI get a little bit everything every now and thenBut there's room for you hereOh, if you take it allGot so much room for you hereYes, I pray you lay your head down hereSo take it allTake it like you would your childhoodThe street you livedYou ride your bikeThe whole world there inside your eyesI'll find the water's deepThe river's wideI've got…
  • Best Books of March 2015

    31 Mar 2015 | 11:15 am
    March 2015: 9 books and scripts readKnee-deep in rehearsals, I read a scant 9 books this month. I enjoyed Alex as Well by Alyssa Brugman. I posted my review of the book here and at GuysLitWire.I read and discussed The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon with a friend who had also read it - and then I recommended that she read Snowblind by Christopher Golden stat. Both of those books make me grateful for life and sunshine.
 
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    Jen Robinson's Book Page

  • Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: April 24

    Jen Robinson
    24 Apr 2015 | 6:59 am
    Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. Topics in this relatively brief issue include book awards, book lists, the Mathical Book Prizes, the Cybils Awards, growing bookworms, Madeleine L'Engle, schools, picture books, educational technology, banned books week, and libraries. Awards ABA Announces 2015 Indies Choice and E.B. White Award Winners | @ABABook http://ow.ly/LLvUu Kudos to @hollyblack for YA book of the year The Mathical Book Prizes, for books that “foster a love and curiosity for math” have been awarded http://ow.ly/LYVi5 via @tashrow…
  • I Am Otter: Sam Garton

    Jen Robinson
    23 Apr 2015 | 8:43 am
    Book: I Am Otter Author: Sam Garton Pages: 32 Age Range: 3-7 I Am Otter by Sam Garton is the story of Otter, who lives with a young man he calls "Otter Keeper". When Otter Keeper goes to work, Otter, despite having his favorite teddy bear, and many toys, to keep him company, gets bored. One day, Otter decides to open a restaurant in the house. When things don't go well, Otter blames Teddy. But when Teddy disappears, he learns a valuable lesson about appreciating one's friends.  It's all delightfully silly. The messes that Otter makes are truly epic, and will be appreciated by kids. The…
  • Growing Bookworms Newsletter: April 22

    Jen Robinson
    22 Apr 2015 | 11:50 am
    Today, I will be sending out a new issue of the Growing Bookworms email newsletter. (If you would like to subscribe, you can find a sign-up form here.) The Growing Bookworms newsletter contains content from my blog focused on children's and young adult books and raising readers. I usually send the newsletter out every two weeks. Newsletter Update: In this issue I have four children's book reviews (early chapter book through young adult) and two posts with literacy and reading links that I shared on Twitter recently. I…
  • The Detective's Assistant: Kate Hannigan

    Jen Robinson
    21 Apr 2015 | 8:14 am
    Book: The Detective's Assistant Author: Kate Hannigan Pages: 368 Age Range: 8-12 The Detective's Assistant by Kate Hannigan is historical fiction speculating on the existence of the niece of an actual historical figure, Kate Warne, the first female detective to work for Pinkerton's Agency. 11-year-old Nell Warne is dumped on the doorstep of her extremely reluctant aunt by marriage, after the deaths of Nell's family members from various causes. Aunt Kitty lives in a Chicago boarding house in a time immediately prior to Abraham Lincoln's election as President. Aunt Kitty blames Nell's father…
  • Literacy Milestone: Playing Librarian

    Jen Robinson
    17 Apr 2015 | 2:21 pm
    Last night, not long before bedtime, I noticed that my daughter was being suspiciously quiet. I went into her room and found her ... organizing her collection of early readers by series and color. For example, the Mia books were together next to the Pete the Cat books because both have yellow and white spines. She then proceeded to give me one of the books (Celebrating Massachusetts) to take back to my room because it was green, and the only one from its series. I thought quietly to myself, "here is a librarian in the making."  This morning she continued her organizing, and then…
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    Writing and Ruminating

  • Happy birthday, Billy!

    23 Apr 2015 | 8:05 am
    Today is the anniversary of Shakespeare's baptism, so it's usually celebrated as his birthday (not that baptism and birth were necessarily done the same day, but I digress). Here's his take on daffodils, which goes in a completely different, one might say "more earthy" direction than Wordsworth's poem that I posted yesterday. It's from The Winter's Tale, Act IV, scene 2.When daffodils begin to peer,   With heigh! The doxy over the dale,Why, then comes in the sweet o’ the year;  For the red blood reigns in the winter’s pale.The white sheet bleaching on the hedge,  With…
  • I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud by William Wordsworth

    22 Apr 2015 | 2:22 pm
    Of late, while walking about the neighborhood with my sweetheart, I've been spying daffodils in bloom here and there. The rest of my post is a reprise from April of 2010, with a bit of tweaking.Some of you may know this poem as "Daffodils", though that's not its actual name; its real name is "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud", and it's an extremely popular, much-anthologized poem.I Wandered Lonely as a Cloudby William WordsworthI wandered lonely as a cloud   That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd,   A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath…
  • Happy Angela De Groot Day!

    20 Apr 2015 | 8:40 am
    Lots of you know my friend Angela already (some in person, some on Live Journal - here's the link to her blog, and some by reference), and today I'm celebrating her. Not just because it's her birthday, though it is, but also because she's had lots of good publishing news of late.First, there was her high placement in the Writer's Digest Poetry Contest last fall. She was up in the top ten, though I don't recall her exact number at present, which makes the second Writer's Digest poetry award for her.And then there's her latest news, which is hinted at in these two…
  • An update on my chapbook

    17 Apr 2015 | 4:57 pm
    Just last month my first-ever chapbook came out. It's called The Universe Comes Knocking, and it's available from Maverick Duck Press. And it's already into its second printing (not that they put print-run numbers into their books), but still...). And I can say it's transcontinental, since my good friend Angela De Groot sent copies to England as well as Australia. So cool, yes?Know what else? It's garnered some lovely reviews online. Here's one at Finding Wonderland. Here's a favorite poem from it:Socratic Methodby Kelly Ramsdell FinemanHeeding the warnings of his daimoniumdid not prevent…
  • Autoimmune-related stuff

    15 Apr 2015 | 3:44 pm
    Yesterday, I felt pretty energetic in the morning. Mid-afternoon, I got a call from my sweetheart, and nearly jumped out of my skin when my cellphone vibrated and rang. My response clued Morris in that I wasn't quite okay, but I didn't realize just then what was what. You see, I was working on yesterday's blog post about poetry-related stuff, and was being very focused at the moment. I thought it was just me being startled.But no. A bit later I got up and figured out I had hit the wall. Dropped all my spoons. Whatever metaphor you prefer, it applied, and I was fatigued.Rather than fight it, I…
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    The Miss Rumphius Effect

  • NPM Project: Jumping Into Form - Interview with Joan Bransfield Graham

    Tricia
    25 Apr 2015 | 9:01 pm
    In preparation for sharing forms this month, I wrote to a number of poets and asked if they would respond to a short list of questions on poetry, writing, and form. I'm thrilled every time one responds positively and find they have all been extremely generous with their time.Today I'm sharing the thoughts of Joan Bransfield Graham, author of the books Splish Splash (2001), Flicker Flash (2003), and The Poem That Will Not End (2014). In addition to these books, Joan's poetry for children has been published in numerous anthologies, textbooks, and children's…
  • NPM Project: Jumping Into Form - Interview with Joyce Sidman

    Tricia
    24 Apr 2015 | 9:01 pm
    In preparation for sharing forms this month, I wrote to a number of poets and asked if they would respond to a short list of questions on poetry, writing, and form. I'm thrilled every time one responds positively and find they have all been extremely generous with their time.Today I'm sharing the thoughts of Joyce Sidman, author of 13 books, including Winter Bees and Other Poems of the Cold (2014), Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night (2010), Ubiquitous: Celebrating Nature's Survivors (2010), Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors (2009) This Is Just to Say: Poems of Apology and…
  • How a Pantoum Starts

    Tricia
    24 Apr 2015 | 7:23 am
    This month the poetry seven have been focused on writing a pantoum using the words certainties and flight. They will debut on May 1st. YIKES! Mine is not even close to written yet because I'm still tossing around ideas. Here's the work I did yesterday as I sat in two different meetings. This is not surprising, as words and poems seem to emerge in the most inconsiderate of moments.Here's what I scribbled during the morning meeting.When I got back to the office, I dumped my ideas into a form, playing a bit with the lines.Unsure of the this idea, I tried something new at my second meeting.The…
  • NPM Project: Jumping Into Form - Poems of Apology

    Tricia
    23 Apr 2015 | 9:01 pm
    Poems of apology ... well, we must begin with the poem that started it all.This Is Just To Sayby William Carlos WilliamsI have eatenthe plumsthat were inthe iceboxand whichyou were probablysavingfor breakfastForgive methey were deliciousso sweetand so coldPoem ©William Carlos Williams. All rights reserved.There are some who call this "the dreaded plum poem." I happen to like "This is Just to Say". Was the speaker truly remorseful? It's hard to say. Would I have forgiven the writer? Eventually, but I would have been really aggravated to find and read that note. I can just imagine it today,…
  • Poetry Friday - 2015 Progressive Poem: Day/Line 24

    Tricia
    23 Apr 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Today is Day 24 of the 2015 Progressive Poem created and nurtured by the lovely Irene Latham. This project is a community writing experience where a poem travels daily from blog to blog, with each host adding a line. It began on April 1st and is nearing its end. I am happy to be participating for the very first time this year, though am  bit intimidated by the form and subject. I'm really not a narrative poem kind of girl, or a free verse girl (not often anyway), so adding a line was a daunting task for me.As the poem has moved from one poet to another, it has occasionally been…
 
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        Poetry for Children

  • Celebrating Jokes

    Sylvia Vardell
    26 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    I read once that kids laugh on average 400 times a day! And adults only laugh about 15 times a day! And since laughter is supposed to be good for the heart, nervous system, and even digestion—not to mention our emotions and well-being—I think we need a lot more laughter in our lives. Watch these young readers performing “No Kidding” by Michelle Schaub in celebration of National Tell a Joke Day which occurs every August 16. (Make plans now!) Here’s the video created by Brooke H. I love that she got two students involved who come from other countries originally—reading both the…
  • Celebrating Thrift Shops

    Sylvia Vardell
    25 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    In this age of "reduce, reuse, recycle," it's a good reminder that thrift shops help us do that with material goods-- as consumers and as providers. And children can start young with the notion of donating to help others. Here April Halprin Wayland conveys a child's mixed feelings in a very clever and tender way in her poem, “Box for the Thrift ShopJuli P. has her two young performers reading both the English and Spanish versions of this lovely poem here.Plan now to donate goods (and/or visit a thrift shop) on August 17, National Thrift Shop Day. And encourage children you know to…
  • Celebrating Etiquette

    Sylvia Vardell
    24 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    Coming soon: a whole week to celebrate good manners and being considerate of others! Yes, May 11-15 is officially National Etiquette Week and we are celebrating with the poem “Things Not to Do” by the always-considerate poet Eileen Spinelli. Here Veronica V. has challenged her young readers to perform the poem in both English and Spanish. Check it out:And would you like to know what Emily Post has to say about National Etiquette Week? Click HERE.For the full text of this poem and 150+ more (all in English AND Spanish), order your own copy of The Poetry Friday Anthology for…
  • Celebrating the Farmer’s Market

    Sylvia Vardell
    23 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    Cheryl T. has recruited two very young readers to perform Buffy Silverman's poem, "At the Farmers’ Market” here even talking about their favorite fruits and vegetables at the end. Pull this poem out again to share August 8-15, 2015 in honor of National Farmer's Market Week."  And if you want to follow up with "Take 5" activities, here you go:Take 5Add a bit of fun to sharing this poem in honor of National Farmers’ Market Week with a poetry prop—show a piece of fruit or a vegetable (or an empty shopping bag) before reading the poem aloud. If you have enough to share and…
  • April 22: Celebrating Earth Day

    Sylvia Vardell
    22 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    Today is Earth Day. Want to know more about this special day? Click HERE.Want a poem to celebrate this day and our planet? Look for Mary Lee Hahn's "Earth, You Are" in The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations.Want to see a global selfie” that NASA created to celebrate Earth Day? For the full text of this poem and 150+ more (all in English AND Spanish), order your own copy of The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations HERE and for more Poetry Celebrations fun, click HERE. Plus for more on National Poetry Month, click HERE.
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    Cynsations

  • Cynsational News & Giveaways

    Cynthia Leitich Smith
    24 Apr 2015 | 6:50 am
    By Cynthia Leitich Smithfor CynsationsThe Winner of the 2015 Children's Africana Book Award is The Red Pencil by Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Shane W. Evans (Little, Brown, 2014).Character Talents & Skills: Strong Breath Control by Angela Ackerman from Writers Helping Writers. Peek: "A practitioner skilled in this area must also be able to find their center of calm quickly, neutralizing fears and anxieties when they appear as a result of environmental changes, circumventing fight-or-flight responses tied to survival instinct."Context Matters: On Labels and Responsibility by…
  • Guest Interview: Dana Walrath on Like Water on Stone

    Cynthia Leitich Smith
    23 Apr 2015 | 12:12 pm
    By Lyn Miller-Lachmannfor Cynthia Leitich Smith's Cynsations This month marks the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. In 1984, Dana Walrath journeyed to Palu, in Western Armenia (now part of Turkey), where she saw the mill and farmlands that once belonged to her maternal ancestors, who were forced to flee the Ottoman Empire in 1915.Her family story became the basis of her acclaimed novel in verse Like Water on Stone (Delacorte, 2014).Dana Walrath is a graduate of the MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts and the author of the graphic…
  • Guest Post & Giveaway: Anne Bustard on Musicality: Composing with Repetitions

    Cynthia Leitich Smith
    22 Apr 2015 | 6:00 am
    By Anne Bustardfor Cynthia Leitich Smith's CynsationsEvery writer wants her work to sing.Writing that sings is exquisitely crafted. It lifts its voice in praise of language. Its story is pitch perfect. It invites readers to sing along and has the power to linger in a reader’s consciousness long after the last note.Like a composer creating a musical score, a writer must consider every note, every sound, and use repetition and even silence to bring harmony to the musical score.Through careful crafting and attention, writers discover which notes to amplify, which sounds to hold, which refrains…
  • Guest Post: Joy Preble on Being a Mid-Career, Mid-List Author

    Cynthia Leitich Smith
    21 Apr 2015 | 6:21 am
    By Joy Preblefor Cynthia Leitich Smith's Cynsations I took pause for a moment when my lovely friend and mentor, Cyn Leitich Smith, asked me to write about what it’s like to be at this stage in my career.“You know,” she said. “You’ve got a foothold but you’re not a new voice or (yet) a grand dame.”The truth is that she nailed it exactly. Like so many authors—most of us in fact—I’m somewhere in the middle. Finding Paris (Balzer and Bray/Harper Collins, 2015) will be my sixth book, following on the heels of two paranormal series. It will be my first darker contemporary YA,…
  • Guest Post: T.A. Maclagan on Spy Novel Covers & They Call Me Alexandra Gastone

    Cynthia Leitich Smith
    20 Apr 2015 | 5:58 am
    By T.A. Maclagan for Cynthia Leitich Smith's CynsationsFrom the promotional copy of They Call Me Alexandra Gastone by T.A. Maclagan (Full Fathom Five Digital, 2015):When your life is a lie, how do you know what’s real?Alexandra Gastone has a simple plan: graduate high school, get into Princeton, work for the CIA, and serve her great nation.She was told the plan back when her name was Milena Rokva, back before the real Alexandra and her family were killed in a car crash.Milena was trained to be a sleeper agent by Perun, a clandestine organization from her true homeland of Olissa. There,…
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    WordPress Tag: Children's Book

  • Carrot by Vanita Oelschlager

    bicted
    17 Apr 2015 | 12:00 am
    Title: Carrot Author: Vanita Oelschlager Illustrator: Kristen Blackwood Publisher: Vanita Books Published: May 2nd, 2011 Rating: 4/5 Carrot’s the cat, the hero of this book In which I recommend you go take a look. The story is told throughout as a rhyme A winner for me, every time! Carrot sees a cat that’s out on a boat And dreams of its life there living afloat But whilst it may be great for a day or two Decides that for life it most certainly won’t do! I thoroughly enjoyed this story and rhyme The pictures are brilliant, fantastic each time. The language is simple, just right for…
  • Children's Litterature: NO CAKE!?

    andreeannep8
    16 Apr 2015 | 5:06 pm
    In the digitalized era in which we live, it is common to witness children lack literacy as most of their interactions are now made digitally. Children tend to lack imagination and creativity and are often hesitant to pick up a book to read, as their tablet often seems way more interesting. As a future educator, I understand that the ways in which children are exposed to litterature are constantly evolving. However, literature remains a very important aspect of education. When asked to create a children’s book in my Children’s Literature class, I first wondered how my team and I…
  • Writing Speed!

    Crimson Kingdom Kingdom
    16 Apr 2015 | 12:06 pm
    It’s been a week since my last post and that is primarily because I’ve been really lazy.
  • Portuguese Picture Books: My childhood

    Danielle
    16 Apr 2015 | 11:50 am
    Albert Whitman author Ana Crespo shares some of her favorite childhood picture books from Brazil in this week’s #Fridayreads. Ana is the author of The Sock Thief (Spring 2015), J.P. and the Giant Octopus (Fall 2015), and J.P. and the Polka-Dotted Aliens (Fall 2015). I love picture books. So, as you can imagine, I read lots of them. For now, I have a good excuse – a five-year old who loves them as much as I do. However, I don’t think I will have the excuse for too long, as the five-year old will soon move on to more wordily adventures. Born and raised in Brazil, the books I read as a…
  • How To Write & Publish a #1 Bestselling Children’s Book to Amazon in a Weekend (Sort of...)

    pauljennynyc
    16 Apr 2015 | 9:08 am
    The title of this post was the promise made by a recent free webinar I did recently. One of the people responsible for the “Chicken Soup for the (fill in profitable niche group here) Soul” publishers sponsored the webinar. Like most of these free webinars, it was well presented and had some great information, but I think the title, “How To Write & Publish a #1 Bestselling Children’s Book to Amazon in a Weekend” is a bit misleading. The thing about these free webinars  is that they are part of a “funnel” to pull people in with an offer of something…
 
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    School Library Journal

  • Famous Chef, Chickens with Superpowers, and Hurricane Katrina Lead the Pack at Random House Preview | 2015 Spring Preview

    Rocco Staino
    24 Apr 2015 | 11:23 am
    When you mention Random House Children’s Books, many renowned names in children literature come to mind, but none more than Theodor Seuss Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss. On the day of the Random House Summer Preview, February 18, it was announced that a never-before-published Seuss book, What Pet Should I Get, would be released in July. The publication of this title will coincide with the 50th anniversary of Fox in Socks and I Had Trouble Getting to Solla Sollew, of which new editions will be released in July and August. Fifty was a magic number at the preview; Richard Scarry’s Busy Busy World…
  • Diverse Voices: A Discussion on Crafting Fiction, Nonfiction, and Audiobooks that Reflect and Celebrate Diversity

    SLJ
    23 Apr 2015 | 9:49 am
    Presented by: Listening Library, Simon & Schuster, Tuttle Publishing, and School Library Journal Event Date & Time: Tuesday, May 12th, 2015, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM ET / 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM PT As the We Need Diverse Books campaign has gained momentum, librarians are increasingly looking for ways to integrate, highlight, and share diverse books and audio books with the students and patrons in their libraries. Join authors Sharon Draper, Jason Reynolds, Christy Hale, and Sandra Moore, along with librarian Thom Barthelmess, and SLJ editor Kiera Parrott for a conversation about…
  • Winners Announced for IMLS National Medal for Museum and Library Service; Capstone Fellowship in Children’s Lit | News Bites

    Ashleigh Williams
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:51 am
    Honors and Prizes The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has announced the recipients of the 2015 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Among its honorees are the following libraries: the Cecil County Public Library in Elkton, MD, the Craig Public Library in Craig, AK, the Embudo Valley Library and Community Center in Dixon, NM, and the Los Angeles Public Library. For 21 years, the award has celebrated institutions that present extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service to make a difference for individuals, families, and communities. The award will be…
  • 2015 Banned Books Week to Focus on YA Lit

    Shelley Diaz
    23 Apr 2015 | 6:54 am
    This year’s Banned Books Week (BBW, September 27 to October 3) will celebrate books written for teens, the BBW National Committee announced on April 22. This annual event to raise awareness about the freedom to read has long been a staple in libraries, schools, and bookstores, especially those serving young adults. YA literature is an often-challenged category. The American Library Association (ALA) announced the Top Ten Most Challenged Books of 2014 last week, and the majority of them were books for teens. The six YA titles on the list include Sherman Alexie’s National Book…
  • What Does “Excellence” in Nonfiction Mean to YALSA? | Consider the Source

    Marc Aronson
    23 Apr 2015 | 6:49 am
      One of the questions I ask students shortly after I’ve been introduced to a school assembly as an author of nonfiction is, “What is nonfiction?” Usually someone will raise his or her hand and mention a book of “facts.” “Only facts?” I might ask. “What about ideas, theories, and stories?”  Now, there’s some stirring in the crowd. I flip the question—”What is the “non” in nonfiction? What else do we ever define by what it is not?” Now a couple of young people might raise their hands and say, a “real” book, a book about “reality.” Of…
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    A Fuse #8 Production

  • Review of the Day: On the Shoulder of a Giant by Neil Christopher

    Elizabeth Bird
    24 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    On the Shoulder of a Giant: An Inuit Folktale By Neil Christopher Illustrated by Jim Nelson Inhabit Media $16.95 ISBN: 978-1-77227-002-0 Ages 4-7 On shelves now My daughter is afraid of giants. She’s three so this isn’t exactly out of the norm. However, it does cut out a portion of her potential reading material. Not all giants fall under this stricture, mind you. She doesn’t seem to have any problem with the guys in Giant Dance Party and “nice” giants in general get a pass. Still, we’ve had to put the kibosh on stories like Jack and the Beanstalk and anything else where getting…
  • Displays Every Day! An April 23rd Sampler

    Elizabeth Bird
    23 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    Yesterday was Earth Day, and I suspect a fair number of you librarians out there did some killer Earth Day displays of books for the kiddos, teachers, and parents out there.  I love thematic book displays.  But who says you need an official holiday to create one?  Let us say, for the sake of argument, that you wanted to do a really eclectic display on (just to pick a random date) April 23rd.  Honestly you could make a truly crazy but interesting series of books if you wanted to.  After all, April 23rd is . . . Shakespeare’s Birthday – Apparently last year was his 450th so 451…
  • A Call for Art! Judy Blume Art! Celebrate the ABFE

    Elizabeth Bird
    22 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    So you think you love Judy Blume?  Prove it.  As you know, each and every year The American Booksellers for Free Expression has a book art auction.  It’s where people go to get really really good stuff.  And this year, since the ABFE is celebrating Judy Blume, they’re not only looking for artists willing to do something in her honor but also people willing to buy those selfsame pieces. Think about it.  You probably know a die-hard Judy Blume fan already.  Now imagine you give that person some awesome art that celebrates her.  I honestly can’t think of a present that…
  • Fusenews: “It’s like a shoe of flesh”

    Elizabeth Bird
    21 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    Mmm. Vanity straight up. So I never quite know how to post “me stuff” news when it’s particularly nice. On the one hand I could post the link with the typical “I’m not worthy” statement attached, but that always sounds as if I doth protest too much.  Or, I could go the other route, and just celebrate the link with a whole lotta hooplah and devil take the consequences. I think, in the end, I’d prefer to just preface the link with a long, drawn out, ultimately boring explanation of why these links are problematic in the vague hope that your eyes glazed…
  • Video Sunday: “You fill me with inertia.”

    Elizabeth Bird
    19 Apr 2015 | 1:00 am
    Hallo, folks! So today is the last day of National Library Week.  In celebration, enjoy this delightful video from Common Craft for your average non-library literate layman.  If you are a librarian, show this video to those members of your family who heard you had to get a Master’s degree and asked you, “What? So they teach you how to put your hair in a bun and go ‘Shh’ all day?” More info here. There is a saying in my family: A music video isn’t viral until soldiers perform a version of it.  Admittedly it’s a relatively new saying.  The same…
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    Michael Gerson: Most Recent Articles and Archives

  • David Brooks’s new book: ‘The Road to Character’ and a path to grace

    Michael Gerson
    23 Apr 2015 | 5:09 pm
    Most of us have an image of the counterculture, shaped by memory or mythmaking, that involves Haight-Ashbury, flea-market clothing, free love and a haze of pot smoke. But as the counterculture has consumed the culture — with hipsterism marketed at Urban Outfitters, pre-, non- and extramarital sex a firmly established social expectation and a haze of pot smoke covering entire states — countering the culture takes on a different meaning. Read full article >>
  • What is the president doing on Iran?

    Michael Gerson
    16 Apr 2015 | 5:10 pm
    “I have never seen anything like it.”So I was told by a former U.S. official, who had seen much as a senior diplomat. It has become hard to deny that the rollout of the Lausanne framework is a first-rate debacle — a dazzling display of self-destructive incompetence. Read full article >>
  • What is the president doing on Iran?

    Michael Gerson
    16 Apr 2015 | 5:10 pm
    “I have never seen anything like it.”So I was told by a former U.S. official, who had seen much as a senior diplomat. It has become hard to deny that the rollout of the Lausanne framework is a first-rate debacle — a dazzling display of self-destructive incompetence. Read full article >>
  • Enter the reform conservatives

    Michael Gerson
    13 Apr 2015 | 4:39 pm
    The juxtaposition of Hillary Clinton’s and Marco Rubio’s announcements for president illustrates a serious problem for American progressivism: Its political bench looks as spry and novel as the old Soviet Politburo. Joe Biden? Jerry Brown? Elizabeth Warren? All fight for Social Security while qualifying for their full checks. Read full article >>
  • Enter the reform conservatives

    Michael Gerson
    13 Apr 2015 | 4:39 pm
    The juxtaposition of Hillary Clinton’s and Marco Rubio’s announcements for president illustrates a serious problem for American progressivism: Its political bench looks as spry and novel as the old Soviet Politburo. Joe Biden? Jerry Brown? Elizabeth Warren? All fight for Social Security while qualifying for their full checks. Read full article >>
 
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    Semicolon

  • What is a Living Book?

    Sherry
    25 Apr 2015 | 12:09 pm
    “Living books” is a big buzzword in homeschooling these days. What does it mean? Really, living books are just good books, books that engage the reader and make the subject “come alive” in one’s imagination. But I realize that definition or re-statement rather begs the question. © 2013 Boston Public Library, Flickr | CC-BY | via WylioThe difficulty lies in the eye of the beholder, or in this case, the reader. The books that make history or science or imagination come alive for me might not be the same books that do the same for you and your children.
  • Saturday Review of Books: April 25, 2015

    Sherry
    24 Apr 2015 | 5:46 pm
    “Wonder is the beginning of wisdom in learning from books as well as from nature. If you never ask yourself any questions about the meaning of a passage, you cannot expect the book to give you any insight you do not already possess.” ~Mortimer Adler, How To Read a Book Welcome to the Saturday Review of Books at Semicolon. Here’s how it usually works. Find a book review on your blog posted sometime during the previous week. The review doesn’t have to be a formal sort of thing. You can link to your thoughts on a particular book, a few ideas inspired by reading the book, your…
  • The Luck Uglies by Paul Durham

    Sherry
    21 Apr 2015 | 5:03 pm
    The Luck Uglies by Paul Durham. The Luck Uglies #2: Fork-Tongue Charmers by Paul Durham. The first book in this fantasy series for middle grade readers, published in 2014, won the Cybils Award for Middle Grade Speculative Fiction. I read it when I was on the panel for Cybils, and I thought I had reviewed it here, but it turns out that I was too busy reading to review The Luck Uglies. So, a quick re-cap: Riley (Rye) O’Chanter lives on Mud Puddle Lane in Village Drowning with her mother, Abby O’Chanter, her little sister, Lottie, and Nightshade (Shady) Fur Bottom O’Chanter,…
  • Tiger Boy by Mitali Perkins

    Sherry
    21 Apr 2015 | 2:29 pm
    Set on an island in the Sunderbans (islands) of West Bengal, Tiger Boy is a story about a disobedient and somewhat lazy boy who nevertheless does the right thing and inspires his father to choose right and justice over the desire to see his family prosper. I had some hesitations about the plot of the story, showing Neel and his sister deliberately disobeying their parents in order to save a lost tiger cub from poachers, but by the end I was pleased with the way the actions of the characters came together. Everyone grew and learned, except maybe the money-grubbing criminal, Gupta. One…
  • Black Hearts in Battersea by Joan Aiken

    Sherry
    20 Apr 2015 | 7:02 pm
    Before there were “steampunk” and “alternate history” and multiple volume fantasy series in children’s books, there was Joan Aiken’s The Wolves of Willoughby Chase sequence, made up of twelve middle grade novels “set in an imaginary period of English history which never took place: the reign of King James III, in the earlier part of the nineteenth century, when England was still sadly plagued by wolves.” Black Hearts in Battersea is the second book in the series. Joan Aiken’s website, created by her daughter Lizza Aiken, is full of…
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    Ally Carter

  • Magnificent Monday

    Shellie
    20 Apr 2015 | 9:06 am
    Hi Everyone! Exciting News! Ally is going to be at the International Spy Museum on May 15! She had such a  fun time when she was there last and can’t wait to visit again! If you are going to be in the Washington, DC area please plan to visit her at the museum on the 15th or Gaithersburg Book Fest in Maryland on  May the 16th. Ally loves being able to tour and meeting all of you in person! Hopefully if you are in the area you can come out and see her. Have a good week! Shellie   P.S. Thanks for all the well wishes for my daughter last week! You will be happy to know she was only…
  • Magnificent Monday

    Shellie
    13 Apr 2015 | 11:03 am
      Hi Everyone! I have a sick kiddo at home with me today so we are hanging out in our pajamas and watching Disney movies. What do you guys like to do when you are home sick? Watch anything special? Eat anything in particular? My favorite movie to watch when I was home sick or up late was Beauty and the Beast. That movie would help me fall asleep every time. Still to this day I have a hard time staying awake when my daughter wants to watch it! Have a good and hopefully healthy week! Shellie P.S. If you are in the Texas area see Ally tonight in Austin,TX at Book People at 7:00pm *Joint…
  • Magnificent Monday

    Shellie
    6 Apr 2015 | 10:06 am
    Hi All! Who is ready for an Ally Carter short story? Not only do you get a short story about Grace and her arrival in Adria but you also get  Ally describing the evolution of her idea to build the world of Embassy Row. To read both of these go to the Kindle Daily Post Enjoy! Have a good week! Shellie P.S. If you have any Embassy Row fan art I would LOVE to post it for Fan Art Friday on Ally’s Tumblr send to allycartercontest@gmail.com   The post Magnificent Monday appeared first on Ally Carter.
  • Magnificent Wedding Monday

    Shellie
    30 Mar 2015 | 10:12 am
    Hi Everyone! Well I hinted about a fun announcement last week and now I am happy to tell you all… A Gallagher Wedding is now available here on the site! Just in case you don’t know, a Gallagher Wedding is a brief short story that was made available in special limited editions of UNITED WE SPY. We are honored to offer it here, for free, for all readers. WARNING: This story takes place after the conclusion of UNITED WE SPY and does contain spoilers for the final Gallagher Girls book and the entire series. I know there were so many of you who wanted to be able to read this awesome…
  • Magnificent Monday

    Shellie
    23 Mar 2015 | 6:54 am
    Hi Everyone! Well I survived a week of Spring Break and am excited we have all gone back to our regular routine! I am also super excited to share some awesome news with you all!!! Ally has added another tour date!!!! WooHoo!!! She will be in Houston, TX on April 11 for the Teen Book Con and now in Austin, TX on April 13 at Book People this is a Joint event with David Levithan and Justine Larbalestier! If you are in the Texas area here are 2 great chances to meet Ally and get your books signed!! I also have some other exciting news but I am going to wait to share that so keep checking back.
 
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    Scott Westerfeld

  • Texas and Mexico Mini-Tour!

    scott
    30 Mar 2015 | 9:36 am
    On Saturday, April 11, Justine and I will be at Teen Book Con in Houston. Each panel presents four times a day, so you’ll be able to catch us both: “The Secrets That Bind Us” Ally Carter Lindsay Cummings Justine Larbalestier Henry Turner “Reality Need Not Apply” Lydia Kang Megan Miranda Kristen Simmons Tommy Wallach Scott Westerfeld Click here for details on Teen Book Con. On April 13, we’ll be in Austin, where Justine is doing an event with Ally Carter and David Levithan. (I will be lurking around.) Book People 603 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78703 Monday,…
  • NYCTAF

    scott
    16 Mar 2015 | 7:34 am
    Hey, everyone. I’m back in the States for the New York Teen Author Festival (#NYCTAF). I’ll be doing several events, and there are many more to choose from. Here’s the complete schedule. And here’s my personal schedule: “What is YA anyway?” Monday, March 16 Mulberry Street NYPL, 10 Jersey St 6-8pm At a time when YA feels ascendant, we’re going to check in and ask: What is YA, anyway? Where does it come from? What does it mean to authors, readers, and the media? Where is it going? Are there fears that it’s just a “trend” right now, and that…
  • Razorhurst Is Out in the US!

    scott
    3 Mar 2015 | 5:21 pm
    Razorhurst, the latest novel from my lovely wife, Justine Larbalestier, is finally out in the US and Canada! (It came out in Australia last July.) It’s about Kelpie, an orphan in 1932 Sydney, who can see ghosts. Raised by restless spirits on the streets of Razorhurst, a crime-ridden slum, she stumbles into the middle of a gang war. To survive, she must forge an alliance with Dymphna, a young call-girl who’s being pursued by one of the city’s crime bosses. It all takes place across one bloody day in the neighborhood where Justine and I live in Sydney. (Which is much nicer…
  • Zeroes Cover!

    scott
    19 Feb 2015 | 8:41 pm
    Here is the cover for Zeroes! Click here for a description of how Zeroes came about, and what it’s about. (Superpowers! Lashings of superpowers, each one more super than the last!) I am unusually proud of this cover, because I made more of a contribution than usual. Authors do get a say in their covers, sometimes. But it’s not like we’re graphic designers, so nobody has to listen to us. In this case, though, I got lucky. My designer, the lovely Regina Flath, had sent us all an early version of the spray paint design. It was definitely moving in the right direction, but we…
  • Afterworlds Paperback Cover

    scott
    5 Feb 2015 | 4:01 pm
    Behold, the cover for the Afterworlds paperback! We figured we would go for a change. I really like the background, to go with the gray afterworld in Darcy’s book, and how it contrasts with that splash of color that is NYC. And, as with the first cover, the teardrop is a great symbol for the novel as a whole. Check it out:
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    deborah wiles: field notes

  • green gables love and exploration

    Debbie Wiles
    20 Apr 2015 | 10:20 am
    Oh, Anne Shirley. Where have you been all my life? YES, friends have swooned over Anne of Green Gables and have told me I MUST READ THIS BOOK, and I have demurred and thought, meh, it just isn't in my wheelhouse, I'm just not interested, she lived in NOVA SCOTIA (wrong... sorta) and I am from the American South and it's going to be twee and saccharine and not at all interesting to me, and...Well, I was wrong. Even though I haven't yet met Gilbert (RIP, oh no) and have only gotten as far as the first picnic, I know I'm onto something special that is showing up now, to teach me. I just know it.
  • back to school

    Debbie Wiles
    17 Apr 2015 | 4:32 pm
    Notes on Being a Late Bloomer is here.The Year of Exploration is here. It occurred to me yesterday: I am intuitively doing what I did when I was so young and a single mom, uneducated, needy, and wanting a life for my kids, for myself, wanting to understand the world and to find my place in it. I went to school. I got my undergraduate degree from the many libraries I haunted during those years. I was barely 22, I was broke, I was alone with two small children, but I had a library card. I still have a library card. Now I have two (we made peace). Suddenly, in this year of exploration, I am…
  • a reply, and my reply to DeKalb County Libraries

    Debbie Wiles
    4 Apr 2015 | 8:13 am
    {DeKalb Libraries responded to my open letter (which you can read in my last post). Director Weissinger waived my yearly non-resident fee and promised to look into the situation at the Tucker branch. My reply is below. I well know this pushes my buttons for long-ago personal reasons, but I also know it's a vital issue today} Dear Ms. Weissinger,Thank you for such a prompt response. Even though you have waived it, I would like to pay my yearly non-resident fee -- I went into the library ready to pay it. My neighbors have had to do this as well, and they are avid library users, most of them…
  • an open letter to DeKalb County Georgia public libraries

    Debbie Wiles
    3 Apr 2015 | 7:15 am
    {As part of my #yearofexploration I decided to stop protesting the $45 fee I must pay to use the library up the street from me. Having two library systems will be much more convenient for the many expeditions I hope to helm this year. Here is what happened when I tried to renew and asked a question...}An Open Letter to the DeKalbCounty Public Libraries in DeKalb County, Georgia:April 3, 2015Dear Library Board and Director Weissinger: Yesterday at 3:00pm, I went to the Reid H. Cofer/Tucker branch of the DeKalb County Library with the intention of paying the annual $45 and renewing my…
  • something different

    Debbie Wiles
    27 Mar 2015 | 10:32 am
    I'm taking an art class -- two -- at Creativebug when I return from family, schools, and a conference in Mississippi. Both are on-demand work-alongs -- you choose the time and place to work on each session -- and both are Lisa Congdon classes. Sketchbook Explorations and Basic Line Drawing.I'm a life-long doodler as well as a notebook devotee and evangelist, as you may know, and in this year of exploration, I've dedicated myself to working more with my hands, going back to my roots. I want to get out of my head -- all those words! -- and use my mind in a different way.I leave for Mississippi…
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    Bookwitch

  • The EIBF schools programme

    bookwitch
    25 Apr 2015 | 9:39 pm
    Do any of you feel like a school at all? I’m asking because the Edinburgh International Book Festival schools programme was released this week, and it’s what Kirkland Ciccone and others were rushing to Edinburgh for on Friday evening, after the Yay! YA+. The organisers invited (I’m only guessing here) a group of authors, some of whom are part of this year’s programme, to come and meet the teachers and librarians who might be persuaded to book a session for their young charges in August. And as I keep saying every year; it’s the schools events you really want to…
  • Yay! YA+

    bookwitch
    24 Apr 2015 | 4:36 pm
    Yesterday saw the long awaited birth of Kirkland Ciccone’s first ever Scottish YA book festival Yay! YA+, and I really appreciate his thoughtfulness in arranging it for the day on which I celebrated my first year in Scotland. Kirkie had lined up ten teen authors, 200 teens and one tardis-like venue in the shape of the Cumbernauld Theatre. In Cumbernauld. He also arranged for the lovely people of Scotia Books to come and sell books, and between you and me, they not only had the good taste to like my sense of humour, but their mobile shop was the best I’ve seen. Once we were all in,…
  • Anzac Boys

    bookwitch
    23 Apr 2015 | 8:57 pm
    In time for Anzac Day tomorrow, I bring you Tony Bradman’s Anzac Boys; a dyslexia friendly short novel on WWI as seen from the other side of the world. And a little bit from ‘our’ end as well. Tony writes about orphans Bert and Frank, who first end up in a children’s home in London in 1906 when their mother dies. They are soon sent off to Australia, to a ‘better life’ as the priest at the orphanage says. Bert is 12 and Frank is 9, so Bert needs to look out for his little brother and promises him always to be there. When they arrive in Australia they are…
  • My St George

    bookwitch
    22 Apr 2015 | 9:41 pm
    It’s St George’s Day. We have our very own Dragon guarding Bookwitch Towers. He used to belong to the Grandmother’s mother, and Son liked him so much that twenty years ago Dragon came to live with us. For years he sat on the bedroom windowsill, staring out into the garden. That’s Dragon, not Son. But with the Scottish move, Son was roomless for long enough that Dragon had to find somewhere else to live. He tried the mantelpiece for a while, but found it boring. (So do I. It’s not exactly my favourite mantelpiece. I don’t sit on it. I just stare.) Then he…
  • Werewolf Parallel

    bookwitch
    21 Apr 2015 | 9:23 pm
    Do you remember Daemon Parallel, where unspeakable things happened at [maybe] Jenners department store, and where Cameron realises his granny is not quite like other grannies? Crazy, loopy, insane. Quite old, too. As I suspected he would, Roy Gill has written a sequel, by popular request. It’s a good thing he did. Not only was Cameron still alive at the end of the first book, but I’d say Werewolf Parallel is even better. With granny gone, it’s down to Cameron and his friends Morgan and Eve to carry on her work and to survive on their own, if at all possible. ‘The cake…
 
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    Confessions of a Bibliovore

  • Reading Roundup: March 2015

    Bibliovore
    1 Apr 2015 | 11:30 pm
    By the NumbersTeen: 13Tween: 3Children: 6SourcesReview Copies: 7Library: 12StandoutsTeen: 37 Things I Love (in no particular order) by Kekla MagoonThis was a lovely, melancholic story about a girl coming to terms with all manner of changes in her life, including her own romance with another girl and her comatose father.Tween: Smek for President! by Adam RexI read the first book (The True Meaning of Smekday) years ago, so I was worried I wouldn't be able to remember the story. Groundless fears. There was much fun to be had here and some answers to some dangling threads from the first…
  • Reading Roundup: February 2015

    Bibliovore
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:54 pm
    By the NumbersTeen: 7Tween: 5Children: 8SourcesReview Copies: 3Library: 12StandoutsTeen: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly BlackOh, the atmosphere on this one. This tale of wicked faeries and brothers and sisters got a boost from the dreamy feel of the whole book.Tween: Drama by Raina TelgemeierThat one-word title just sums up the whole of middle school, as far as I'm concerned. Crushes and friendships and just drama all around in this graphic novel of a middle-school stage crew. Also, I really wanted to join stage crew.Children: Mo Wren, Lost and Found by Tricia SpringstubbWhile Mo…
  • Book Review: Fairest by Marissa Meyer

    Bibliovore
    21 Feb 2015 | 12:32 pm
    Book: FairestAuthor: Marissa MeyerPublished: 2015Source: Local LibraryPrincess Levana has always been overlooked. The second daughter of the Lunar royal house, scarred and ugly, overshadowed by the glittering heir, she yearns for oh so many things. She wants her thoughts and ideas to be taken seriously by the court. She wants people to admire her the way they admire her sister Channary. Most of all, she wants Evret Hayle, the handsome royal guard, to look at her the way she looks at him - with love and longing.She gets her chance when Evret's wife dies in childbirth, and she takes it,…
  • Book Review: Evil Librarian by Michelle Knudsen

    Bibliovore
    14 Feb 2015 | 11:41 am
    Book: Evil LibrarianAuthor: Michelle KnudsenPublished: 2014Source: Local Library Cynthia doesn’t want much out of life, really. She wants the school production of Sweeney Todd to be the best ever. She wants super-cute Ryan Halsey to notice her. She wants to get through Italian class. Now there’s something else to add to that list. She wants her best friend to stop acting like a zombie space cadet around the new librarian. Sure, he’s young and hot, but he’s still an adult and a teacher. Eww. And now Annie is swearing that she’s in love with him. Cyn knows there’s something…
  • 2015 Youth Media Awards: Newbery! Caldecott! Printz! All of the Shiny Medals!

    Bibliovore
    2 Feb 2015 | 9:28 am
    John Newbery Medalfor the most outstanding contribution to children's literatureThe Crossover - Kwame Alexander(H) El Deafo - Cece Bell(H) Brown Girl Dreaming - Jacqueline WoodsonRandolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for childrenThe Adventures of Beekle: the unimaginary friend - Dan Santat(H) Nana in the City - Lauren Castillo(H) The Noisy Paint Box: the colors and sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art - ill. Mary GrandPre, written by Barb Rosenstock(H) Sam and Dave Dig a Hole - ill. Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett(H) Viva Frida - Yuyi Morales(H) The…
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    ReadPlus Review Blog

  • X, a novel by Ilyasah Shabazz with Kekla Magoon

    23 Apr 2015 | 10:43 am
    Candlewick Books, 2015. ISBN 9780763669676 (Ages: 14+) Highly recommended. Civil rights. Racism. Black Muslims. Ilyasah Shabazz recreates in novel form the story of her father Malcolm X's early adolescent life trying to survive in the brutal times of the Ku Klux Klan lynchings and 'strange fruit' hanging in trees. The early years of a poor but happy childhood, surrounded by brothers and sisters growing up in family warmth and strong in his parents' proud beliefs in learning, teaching and leading, are marred by the pivotal moment when the school teacher Malcolm so admires, casually crushes his…
  • Fish jam by Kylie Howarth

    23 Apr 2015 | 10:40 am
    Five-Mile Press, 2015. ISBN 9781760067045 (Age: 2-5) Highly recommended. Limited-text picture book. Fish. Jazz. Textural Art. Kylie Howarth's textural backgrounds provide a perfect underwater platform for the bold, bright yellow image of Toot the little fish who loves to sing. His tail and body are guitar-like, his top fins - trumpet finger buttons and his mouth shaped like a brass instrument's bell. Kylie painted these seascapes in the backyard with her two young boys' help. The text is simple, enjoyable and is easy to share with a toddler. Toot loves to sing and make up music, but all the…
  • Vanishing girls by Lauren Oliver

    23 Apr 2015 | 10:33 am
    Hodder & Stoughton, 2015. ISBN 9781444786781 (Age: 16+) Mystery. Drug and alcohol abuse. Sisters Nick and Dara had been best friends with each other and with Parker until Dara and Parker start to go out and a terrible accident leaves Dara's face scarred and the sisters estranged. When Dara goes missing on her birthday, Nick thinks that she is just playing around but it is not until she realises that little Madeline Snow has disappeared as well that she starts to investigate. This is a complex story narrated in two voices, with separate chapters by Nick and Dara. The reader needs to be…
  • Farm rescue by Darrel Odgers and Sally Odgers

    23 Apr 2015 | 10:28 am
    Pup patrol series. Scholastic, 2015. ISBN 9781743622995 (Age: 6-8) Recommended. Working Dogs. Pets. Floods. Farming. Border Collies. Rescues. Darrel and Sally Odgers have written a new series, Pup patrol for newly independent readers. Barnaby Station Stamp of Approval - Stamp the border collie and his owner James are travelling around Australia in Fourby the 4WD. James is having a year off before starting university. In Farm rescue James and Stamp take shelter at Pepper Plains Farm after the heavy rain soaks their camping gear. James is damp, Fourby is muddy and Stamp's wet dog smell is a…
  • Stand up and cheer by Loretta Re

    22 Apr 2015 | 9:12 am
    Wild Colonial Company, 2014. ISBN 9780992306922 (Age: 10-14) In 1934, an air race commemorating Melbourne's centenary took place with a wide variety of aircraft piloted by men and women from a range of countries flying from London to the Australian city. We can barely imagine the excitement and interest that this generated in a country so isolated from Europe where many people struggled to survive the Great Depression. This carefully researched novel accurately recounts the historical details whilst depicting the events in an enjoyable narrative. I appreciated that the author understood the…
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    I'm Here. I'm Queer. What the Hell do I read?

  • A Companion to Wolves - Fantasy With Human-Animal Bonding and A Gay Cultural Plotline

    Lee Wind, M.Ed.
    24 Apr 2015 | 3:05 am
    A Companion to Wolves by Sarah Monette and Elizabeth Bear A Companion to Wolves is the story of a young nobleman, Isolfr, who is chosen to become a wolfcarl -- a warrior who is bonded to a fighting wolf. Isolfr is deeply drawn to the wolves, and though as his father's heir he can refuse the call, he chooses to go. The people of this wintry land depend on the wolfcarls to protect them from the threat of trolls and wyverns, though the supernatural creatures have not come in force for many years. Men are growing too confident. The wolfhealls are small, and the lords give them less respect than…
  • I'm On Faculty at #LA15SCBWI, The 2015 SCBWI Summer Conference!

    Lee Wind, M.Ed.
    22 Apr 2015 | 6:03 am
    I'm excited – it's one of my favorite events of the year, and this time round, not only will I be leading the awesome SCBWI Team Blog (looking at you, Martha Brockenbrough, Jolie Stekly, Don Tate and Jaime Temairik!) I'll also be on faculty!I'm delighted to share that I'll be moderating the SCBWI Success Stories panel on the main stage (in front of an audience of over 1,000 of our fellow writers and illustrators!) Friday July 31, 2015 from 5pm-6pm. It's called "Tips On How To Realize Your Dream" and I'll be talking with Martha Brockenbrough (Hi there, again, Martha!), Mike Curato, Stacey…
  • Sometimes You're A Caterpillar... And Sometimes You're A Snail - A Great Short About Privilege and Diversity

    Lee Wind, M.Ed.
    20 Apr 2015 | 3:03 am
    I thought this was great.Thanks to Chescaleigh and Kat Blaque for making it for us all to learn from and enjoy!
  • What the Hell? - Alabama Judge Who Fought Marriage Equality Wins "Letter From A Birmingham Jail" Award.

    Lee Wind, M.Ed.
    17 Apr 2015 | 3:05 am
    Birmingham is in Alabama. So, evidently, is irony. (image from here.)Okay, I don't normally rant, but really, this press release I just received really pissed me off!"April 16, 2015 -Today, Rev. Williams Owens, President and Founder of the Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP), announced that Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore would receive their first ever “Letter from a Birmingham Jail Award” in recognition of Justice Moore’s principled stand in defense of traditional marriage."... “Justice Moore is an example for all of us,” stated Rev. William Owens, President of CAAP. “By…
  • Join Me This Weekend at The LA Times Festival Of Books!

    Lee Wind, M.Ed.
    15 Apr 2015 | 8:06 am
    It's a free celebration of books and reading, this April 18 and 19, 2015 at the USC campus near downtown Los Angeles.I'm honored to be moderating two great panel discussions at the festival:On Saturday, April 18, 2015 in the Andrus Gerontology Center,TELL ME A STORY: The Art of Children's Books (Conversation 1043)WithJon AgeeJon is the author/illustrator of many books for children, including "It’s Only Stanley," along with a series of popular wordplay books, among them, "Go Hang a Salami! I’m a Lasagna Hog!" His stories — of mysterious painters, hard-luck magicians, guffawing grumps and…
 
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    Literacy, families and learning

  • 11 Memorable Picture Books for Anzac Day

    Trevor Cairney
    23 Apr 2015 | 5:34 am
    1. 'I Was Only Nineteen' by John Schumann and illustrated by Craig Smith (Allen & Unwin)John Schumann wrote an unforgettable song 'I Was Only 19' in 1983 with the band Redgum. It had the memorable refrain 'God help me, I was only 19'. The lyrics of this well-known Australian song have been brought to life in a children's picture book illustrated by the widely acclaimed Australian illustrator Craig Smith. The lyrics are used exactly as in the song and with Craig Smith's wonderful water colour and line drawings are a moving reminder of the Vietnam War. This was a war that was fought in…
  • 2015 CBCA Children's Book Awards Shortlist

    Trevor Cairney
    17 Apr 2015 | 1:03 am
    The Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) has recently announced the shortlist for the 2015 CBCA Children's Literature awards. There are a couple things worthy of note. First there are many books about war and conflict. This might not be surprising in this year that marks 100 years since the Gallipoli landing that is such a significant part of Australian, New Zealand and British history. Second, there are some wonderful non-fiction books on the list, a number developed by very small presses.The winners and honour books will be announced in Book Week (16-22 August, 2015). I have already…
  • 29 Great Examples of Children's Books that Feature Birds

    Trevor Cairney
    7 Apr 2015 | 5:42 am
    Above: One of the Ospreys observed at TuncurryI wrote a post about birds in books and have just had the joy of observing osprey while on holidays. So here's a refrain of my previous post. I want to encourage parents and teachers to share some children's literature that feature birds. I had fun brainstorming this list with daughter, son-in-law and 3 of my grandchildren. Why not celebrate the wonder of birds with some great literature.  Here are some examples that teachers might consider using.Young Readers (0-7 years) The following books are varied in age range from first books like 'Boo…
  • 16 Holiday Activities that Stimulate Creativity & Learning

    Trevor Cairney
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:14 am
    This is a revised version of a post I wrote a few years ago. As Australian schools prepare for the Easter holidays I thought I'd remind you of some well known activities that can reduce screen time and boredom when your kids have more time on their hand.Parents who have children to care for might try some of the fifteen easy activities. All are fun, simple and can be done at home. Of course, while it's a post about holiday activities any of the ideas can also be used at other times. For many parents holidays mean more hours to fill each day with activities that will keep your children…
  • Eight ways early writing reinforces reading

    Trevor Cairney
    19 Mar 2015 | 4:16 am
    The desire to write starts early!This is a revised version of a post that I did in 2013. I thought that I'd revisit it. Children begin to write early - very early! In fact, they begin to make marks on their world as soon as they can dip fingers into food, water and dirt. Once they can hold a pencil or crayon they are ready to 'compose'! It is important that in the first two years of life that children are given the chance to experience writing. By this, I don't mean structured learning activities, I simply mean an encouragement to try to make marks that might just represent meaning. Very…
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    Kids Love Comics

  • 30 Mar 2015 | 12:24 pm

    John Gallagher
    30 Mar 2015 | 12:24 pm
    Come visit the Kids Love Comics crew at our new locations:Website: http://www.kidslovecomics.netFacebook: http://www.facebook.com/kidslovecomicsTwitter: https://twitter.com/kidslovecomicsInstagram: https://instagram.com/kidslovecomics/
  • Jon's Comics

    Ray Friesen
    11 Jan 2010 | 11:20 am
    I got emailed the other day by Jon Esparza, a real nice guy and big Kids Love Comics fan (in fact, I quite remember having a big long chat about Don Martin with him at the last San Diego Comic Con)Anyway, he's an aspiring cartoonist, dancing the 'how do I get people to notice my work?' dance that so many of us go through, and so I thought I'd share a few of them with all you whoever you are that read this blog! See?!? Never underestimate the power of asking people nicely to do things for you. Just don't over estimate it either.Best of luck to you Jon!
  • A Very Ninja Christmas

    Ray Friesen
    30 Nov 2009 | 7:19 pm
    Just saw Jimmy's new book 'A Very Ninja Christmas' plastered all over the holiday display at a Barnes & Noble in LA. High Five Mr. Gownley!What are the rest of you peoples up to, huh? Cuz I dunno...
  • Baltimore Comic Con

    Ray Friesen
    8 Oct 2009 | 11:32 am
    Well, apparently the Baltimore ComicCon is this weekend. I won't be going, indeed, have never been, but I hear it's great, and I know KLC has a big honkin booth, so everybody have a baltimoretastic time, and post some groovy photos upon your return! Back East Kids Comics Fans: GO! Buy Books, have fun times, or else.
  • San Diego Comic Con 2009

    Ray Friesen
    19 Jul 2009 | 12:49 pm
    Just thought I'd remindify everybody here who's coming to the San Diego Comic Con (in justa few days! So much stuff to do to get ready! Augh!) to come and visit us Kids Love Comickers! (Does any one else think we need a snappier nickname? Post comments suggesting clever ones, we'd love to hear.) Me, (Ray Friesen), and Jimmmy Gownley (Jimmy Gownley) are going to be sharing a booth and poking each other at #2207. Scott Christian Sava is going to be at booth 2002. You can remember them easily, since they both have two 2's in them. Also, Scotts booth, if it were a year, is the past, while Jimmy…
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    The Book Chook

  • Children’s iPad App, Peek-a-Word

    26 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Children’s iPad App Review by Susan Stephenson, www.thebookchook.comHere’s a really simple iPad word game app for young kids - Peek-a-Word: A Game for Developing Observation Skills. From the developer:An entertaining game that helps young children develop observation skills, improve visual perception and learn animals and languages. The animals want to play with you and challenge you to discover the hidden name. Can you guess the name and choose the right animal? Don’t be shy!The child chooses from the animals in front of him/her to see if it matches the hidden name. When the child…
  • Let’s Celebrate World Penguin Day 2015!

    23 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Let’s Celebrate World Penguin Day 2015!by Susan Stephenson, www.thebookchook.com World Penguin Day is on April 25 each year, a perfect time to pause and ponder what we know about these intriguing birds. The last time I celebrated this very special day here at The Book Chook was back in 2011. Today I’ve come up with some more questions to get kids started on thinking penguin thoughts, activities, and a list of resources I found that will help us all celebrate World Penguin Day, 2015. Questions and Activities for Kids* What do you know already about penguins? What would you like to find…
  • Children's Book Review, The Book with No Pictures

    21 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Children's Book Review by Susan Stephenson, www.thebookchook.com The Book with No Pictures was written by B.J.Novak and published by Penguin, 2014. The Book with No Pictures is a children’s book …with no pictures. If you think that means it’s not suitable for children, think again!From the publisher: A book with no pictures? What could be fun about that? After all, if a book has no pictures, there's nothing to look at but the words on the page. Words that might make you say silly sounds ... In ridiculous voices...Hey, what kind of book is this, anyway?At once disarmingly simple and…
  • Resources for National Simultaneous Storytime, 2015

    19 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Resources for National Simultaneous Storytime, 2015by Susan Stephenson, www.thebookchook.comThis year NSS takes place on Wednesday 27 May at 11am when children across Australia will listen to The Brothers Quibble being real aloud. It’s yet another opportunity to celebrate reading with our kids, and promote it throughout our country. There are stacks of useful resources available via ALIA’s website. Thank you ALIA, Penguin Random House, and Aaron Blabey for doing so much to make this wonderful literary special day such a success! Here are some of my ideas for treating the book with kids. I…
  • Children’s Book Week 2015 - Challenges for Kids

    16 Apr 2015 | 12:00 pm
    Children’s Book Week 2015 - Challenges for Kidsby Susan Stephenson, www.thebookchook.com This is the second of five articles at The Book Chook related to Children’s Book Week in 2015. The first was Activities for Children’s Book Week 2015. Next will be Children’s Book Week 2015 - Ideas for Performance (coming 27/5), Children’s Book Week 2015 - Ideas for Display (coming 29/5) and Guest School Visits in Children’s Book Week (coming 1/6). You might also like to browse through ideas in Activities for Children’s Book Week 2014 and Last Minute Ideas for Children’s Book Week 2014.
 
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    Gail Carson Levine

  • Onward! Or Backward?

    15 Apr 2015 | 5:21 am
    First off, I’ve come across a magazine that seeks story and poetry submissions from high school students, and, since the submissions must come from students themselves, not from schools, I assume you can be home schooled if you’d like to submit. And the publication actually pays a fee if a work is accepted, rare in the poetry world. Here’s the link: http://www.hangingloosepress.com/submissions.html. Be sure to tell us here if you get an acceptance. Good luck!Second off, I’ve announced on my website that there’s a sale on the e-book version of A Tale of Two Castles going on until…
  • Alone in a Character Desert

    1 Apr 2015 | 6:49 am
    Just in! You can hear a few minutes of the audio version of STOLEN MAGIC here: https://soundcloud.com/harperaudio_us/stolenmagic_levine!Here’s a preview of my upcoming tour for Stolen Magic. You’ll see that the farthest west I’ll be coming is Ohio and also that the time isn’t set yet for my first appearance in Washington, DC, but you can contact the bookstore for details.Sunday, April 19th – Rhinebeck, NYOblong Books @4:00 PM (with Jeanne Birdsall)Tuesday, April 21st – Concord, NHGibson’s Bookstore @6:30 PMThursday, April 23rd – Fairless Hills, PAB&N Fairless Hills @7:00…
  • Plots and subplots

    18 Mar 2015 | 7:07 am
    On October 5, 2014, unsocialized homeschooler wrote, I'm on the fifth draft of my novel (oh the joy of calling my work a novel!) and I think I've lost my way. Originally the story was simple--boy likes girl, boy writes anonymous letters to girl, girl gets in trouble because of boy, girl hates boy, boy saves girl. Okay, so maybe not that simple, but now it's really complicated. There are multiple perspectives, half a dozen more important characters, and another subplot. With all this extra stuff, the stuff that made up my first draft now only takes up a quarter of the novel. Part of me thinks…
  • Known quantities

    4 Mar 2015 | 5:41 am
    Just curious: Did anyone join in the Woozworld event? I found it strange and didn’t feel as if I met anyone, really. If you were there, what was your experience?Here’s a link to an interesting article in The New York Times about the cheerful bias in journalism and, by extension I guess, in humanity: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/24/science/why-we-all-sound-like-pollyannas.html. I think it’s something to keep in mind as we write stories.On September 18th or later, writeforfun wrote, I’ve been meaning to start writing the third book in my trilogy for months now, but I’m stuck, and a…
  • Pain! Agony!

    18 Feb 2015 | 6:23 am
    First off: a reminder about my appearance on Woozworld on February 21st from 1:00 to 2:00 PM. I’ll be there in the form of an avatar (with gray hair and gray-green eyes--and the resemblance ends there), answering advance questions and questions that crop up at the time. If you participate, I’ll meet you through your avatar, but we probably won’t recognize each other in the actual universe. My hesitations about the event are that it may be too young for many of you, and (the more serious hesitation) that you have to join Woozworld to participate. Please discuss this with your parents…
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    doodlesoop.com

  • Flu Piece

    admin
    29 Mar 2015 | 9:04 pm
      Here’s some art I did for a story I’m working on. It seems to be always cold and flu season around here, but this green spotted stuff is truly serious!
  • The Unwritten in picture books: free Webinar

    admin
    26 Mar 2015 | 2:26 pm
    Just thought I’d link to this free Webinar, The Unwritten, starring editors Harold Underdown and Eileen Robinson. They’re offering a class in picture book writing that sounds pretty good! Interesting Webinar points out the subtext in picture books using A Snowy Day (and there have been lots of those this year!). Click for the Webinar. Just as in art, the negative space shapes your painting, in writing, the pauses and what’s left unsaid give meaning to your words. It’s not just about showing what’s unsaid in the illustrations, because not everything is shown in…
  • Tomi Ungerer

    admin
    25 Jan 2015 | 9:30 pm
    Author and Illustrator Tomi Ungerer, subject of the film Far Out Isn’t Far Enough, is also the subject of an exhibit at The Drawing Center in NYC and a book, All In One. He did not do just children’s books such as Tortoni Tremolo, the Cursed Musician, but political satire and advertising art. These days we need more minds like his. Born in 1931 in France, he has done over 140 books for both children and adults. In his adult books has targeted animal cruelty, the Vietnam War, and written about eroticism (Wikipedia). This is one of my favorite kids’ books of his, which I…
  • Ursula K. Leguin

    admin
    29 Dec 2014 | 6:54 pm
    Love these remarks about publishing by Ursula K. LeGuin! She talks about how publishers should hang onto integrity and resist commercial pressures. She talks about how sci-fi and fantasy were once not considered suitable literature (now, dystopia is practically the rule!) She also scathingly criticized Amazon. A publishing executive called “the most ferocious speech ever given at the National Book Awards.” Besides books for children, she has written poetry and criticism. She’s a natural rebel, being from Berkeley, CA! More info at NPR. Here is her own site.  
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    My Diary

  • Hi there, Myelf Natalie Warnerr I am native from U...

    10 Apr 2015 | 10:53 pm
    Hi there, Myelf Natalie Warnerr I am native from UK and living in India now days for a project. I am a blog writer and contributor to a blog named Happy to Meet (http://happytomeet.blogspot.in).I just saw your blog and got inspired to ask you whether you are interested in sponsor post for your blog. Well we write on Personal Lifestyle category and we will give you high quality content. if you are interested please let me know
  • 10 Apr 2015 | 10:50 pm

    10 Apr 2015 | 10:50 pm
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  • cool...I WANNA GO THERE my blog is turning one in ...

    8 Apr 2015 | 5:23 am
    cool...I WANNA GO THEREmy blog is turning one in 11 eleven days and I'm hosting a poll to decide on the first anniversary post.The link is:http://rsoundarya0707.blogspot.in/2015/04/nothing-in-particular1-and-you-can-vote.htmlYour vote will mean a lot to me and please vote if possible. :)Amazing post and I love your blog <3
  • Cool! :D...Holiday mood still not worn off right? ...

    6 Apr 2015 | 9:39 am
    Cool! :D...Holiday mood still not worn off right?but please update more oftenwww.rsoundarya0707.blogspot.in
  • This is so interesting! I've never seen a sand...

    3 Apr 2015 | 4:32 am
    This is so interesting! I've never seen a sandstorm before! Are they scary? I am in 8th grade, but I don't start 9th until august. Mae :)superswankified.blogspot.com
 
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    TR - Blog for Books, Reviews, Opinion and discussion

  • Mark Twain Quote on Kids

    imTabula rasa
    22 Apr 2015 | 2:55 am
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  • Quote - Secret of Success

    imTabula rasa
    31 Mar 2015 | 6:44 am
    [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Stray thoughts on Christine by Stephen King

    imTabula rasa
    29 Mar 2015 | 4:30 am
    I  was a new entrant to the world of  Stephen King and the curves he throws up so I opened the book with no sense of foreboding or aware of the impending fright that was waiting for me... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Quote - What's a Miracle?

    imTabula rasa
    23 Mar 2015 | 9:50 pm
    [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Where are You?

    imTabula rasa
    22 Mar 2015 | 5:44 am
    [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
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    Nana's Buzz

  • A Simple “New” Way to Boost Your Balance: Qi Gong

    nana
    23 Apr 2015 | 12:40 pm
    My balance has been affected by aging, like many other grandparents.   In addition, my recent knee surgery meant I had to “re-learn” how to walk correctly and keep my balance.  My granddaughter Hazel is walking now and I really need to be steady to keep up with her.  She loves to climb up the stairs to the top of the play structure at the park and I have be secure on my feet to go with her.  And, of course, I want to follow her as she explores all the other  wonderful new places in her world. Recently I started something that isn’t only enjoyable but is definitely…
  • Introduction to Poetry

    nana
    20 Apr 2015 | 3:42 am
    Unless you have been out of the country for the last month, you probably know that April in the U.S. is National Poetry Month. And you may know that we have a national Poet Laureate (the only one in recent time whose name I recognize is Billy Collins). But did you know that we also have a Children’s Poet Laureate? What is a Children’s Poet Laureate? It is an award by the Poetry Foundation for a 2-4 year tenure that aims to raise awareness that children have a natural receptivity to poetry.  The current holder of this honor and title is Kenn Nesbitt.  He was born in Berkeley, CA…
  • A Fun Project and a Special Gift, All in One

    nana
    16 Apr 2015 | 1:39 pm
    Mother’s Day will be here before we know it.  This year I decided to turn the tables on my daughter and make a special gift for her, like she’s done for me so many times.  One of our favorite activities together is to paint pottery and I’ve been the lucky recipient of  priceless  mugs and plates with my granddaughter’s little hand and footprints.  The picture above is one of my favorite treasures which we did with pottery painting. I’m going to be visiting my daughter soon.  There isn’t a pottery painting studio near where she lives so I can’t…
  • Hippo Birdie Two Ewes

    nana
    13 Apr 2015 | 4:00 am
    Hippo birdie two ewes Hippo birdie two ewes Hippo birdie deer Sandra Hippo birdie two ewes Now do you get it? Last week was the birthday of Sandra Keith Boynton, born in 1953 (so younger than I), in Orange, NJ (I grew up in South Orange, NJ – practically a neighbor). You may recognize her as the successful author of many beloved children’s books (more about that in a minute). But one of her earliest commercial successes was a birthday card that she designed for Recycled Paper Greetings. On the front of the card were: a hippo, a bird and two ewes.  It is certainly one of the most…
  • Special Trips to Take With Your Grandchild

    nana
    9 Apr 2015 | 11:03 am
    I just read an article titled  “30 Places Every Kid MUST See.” I don’t fully agree with this list but it does have some wonderful suggestions. And, if the places mentioned in the article are too far away, or a big trip isn’t a possibility at this time, the article provides a helpful guide to the types of activities to consider. Many of these ideas can be adapted to places closer to home. National Parks are high on the list, not surprisingly. The article mentions the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Acadia National Park in Maine and Arches National Park in Utah. If a longer…
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