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July 5, 2015

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Gary Soto, the Art of Not Writing for Children, and the Public Shame Theater

I was flipping through my most recent copy of Horn Book feeling pretty special since I’ve an article in there (“Apples to Elephants: Artists in Animation”) and when I get to the back I see a mention of a book I’ve never heard of before: Why I Don’t Write Children’s Literature by Gary Soto. If […]

Review of the Day: Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer By Kelly Jones Illustrated by Katie Kath Alfred A. Knopf (an imprint of Random House Children’s Books) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-385-75552-8 On shelves now The epistolary novel has a long and storied history. At least when it comes to books written for adults. So too does it exist in […]

Press Release Fun: The Summer Camp You Deserve (Highlights!)

As I have in the past, I’ll be speaking at the Highlights Foundation roundabout July 16th, and it really is just the nicest place to be.  With that in mind, here’s a cute little infographic the folks made about their summer camp.  Come by, come by!

Day of Dialog 2015: Putting the Chaotic Past Into Some Kind of Order

Book Expo’s a funny beastie. For years it existed for the booksellers of America.  Librarians?  Sure, they could go but we weren’t exactly encouraged to attend.  We had our ALA Conferences and that was nice and well and good. But times, they change.  The internet appeared. The bloggers congealed (I’m trying to find a better […]

What Makes a Picture Book Mega-Hit?

It’s not that it’s impossible to predict the “next big thing” in children’s literature, but it’s also not exactly a hard science.  Indeed, whenever a publisher starts spending beaucoup de bucks on a given title (hardcover f&gs, a serious marketing campaign for a debut author, etc.) I cringe a bit.  They’ve made their bets and […]

Five Questions with Kids Comic Authors: Dan Santat!

I’m so pleased to be participating in the Kids Comics Q&A Blog Tour.  Today I’m happy to also announce that our interview is coming to us via the multi-talented Jorge Aguirre and Raphael Rosado (they of the books Giants Beware and this year’s Dragons Beware).  They’re coming over here to chat with a fairly well-known […]

Video Sunday: The Lord of the Jello

Morning, folks.  What’s that?  Why, yes. Yes, I would like to watch this video about Nathan Hale’s newest GN The Underground Abductor. Thank you! Seems to me the man has lucked out in terms of timing too. With people rallying to put Ms. Tubman on the $20 bill, it is now vastly important to learn […]

Press Release Fun: The 2015 Anne Izard Storytellers’ Choice Awards

The Anne Izard Storytellers’ Choice Awards Committee is pleased to announce the recipients of the 12th biennial Awards.  The awards will be presented in a ceremony on Tuesday, June 16, 2015, at the White Plains (New York) Public Library. The program is open to the public. The Anne Izard Storytellers’ Choice Award was established in 1990 […]

Fuse 8 TV: Geoff Rodkey and Reading (Too Much) Into Karen Katz

And a happy Thursday to you all.  It’s May 21st and that means another episode of Fuse #8 TV is up and running.  As per usual I kick the whole kerschmozzle off with a new edition of “Reading (Too Much) Into Picture Books”.  Though I had a recent request to tackle The Giving Tree, I couldn’t […]

Fusenews: “Someday I’ll go to Winnipeg to win a peg-leg pig”

When two people sent me this link I assumed that everyone must have already seen it. But when it didn’t show up on PW Children’s Bookshelf I decided that perhaps I might have a scoop. At the very least, it appears that when people think Nick Cave meets Dr. Seuss, I’m the logical person to […]

Review of the Day: Billy’s Booger by William Joyce

Billy’s Booger: A Memoir (Sorta) By William Joyce Moonbot Books / Atheneum Books for Young Readers (an imprint of Simon & Schuster) $17.99 ISBN: 978-1442473515 Ages 4-7 On shelves June 2nd The fictionalized picture book memoir is a fairly new creation, when you get right down to it. It’s not as if Sendak was telling […]

In Search of the Elusive Lesbian Mom

In Search of the Elusive Lesbian Mom

On a typical day at work I might be called upon to come up with a list of children’s books pertaining to one topic or another.  Recently I decided to cull together a GLBTQ list for grades K-3 and one for grades 4-8.  Easy peasy.  I know a lot of the books, both old and […]

What Are the Great Children’s Literature Writing Retreats?

This one’s for the writers, but could be of just as much use to those folks who want to be published authors and just haven’t gotten there yet.  In my time as a roving children’s librarian I’ve spoken at two different but enchanting writing retreats.  I should probably define my terms, though, so when I […]

What Are the Great Children’s Literature Writing Retreats?

This one’s for the writers, but could be of just as much use to those folks who want to be published authors and just haven’t gotten there yet.  In my time as a roving children’s librarian I’ve spoken at two different but enchanting writing retreats.  I should probably define my terms, though, so when I […]

When Illustrators Surprise You

When Illustrators Surprise You

Brinton Turkle: Purveyor of Terror. For that statement to strike you funny you have to first be familiar with the collected works of a man that, I would argue, was the most successful Quaker author/illustrator in the business. Today I want to tackle the phenomenon of what happens when you discover a new book from […]

Review of the Day: Finding Winnie by Lindsay Mattick

Review of the Day: Finding Winnie by Lindsay Mattick

Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear By Lindsay Mattick Illustrated by Sophie Blackall $18.00 ISBN: 978-0-316-32490-8 Ages 4-7 On shelves October 20th What is it with bears and WWI?  Aw, heck.  Let’s expand that question a tad.  What is it with adorable animals and WWI?  Seems these days no matter […]

The Children’s Choice Book Awards Gala or I’m Ready for My Close-Up, Mr. Scieszka

Subtlety was never my strong suit. And speaking of suits, how crazy is that one?  Yes, if you happened to be at this Monday’s 8th annual Children’s Choice Book Awards gala then you may have cast thine peepers on this understated little ensemble.  Twitter at the moment is vacillating between whether or not it belongs in […]

The Children’s Choice Book Awards Gala or I’m Ready for My Close-Up, Mr. Scieszka

Subtlety was never my strong suit. And speaking of suits, how crazy is that one?  Yes, if you happened to be at this Monday’s 8th annual Children’s Choice Book Awards gala then you may have cast thine peepers on this understated little ensemble.  Twitter at the moment is vacillating between whether or not it belongs in […]

Ben Hatke and the One and Only Miracle Molly

I’ve always been a particular fan of author/illustrator/cartoonist Ben Hatke.  From the moment I first laid eyes on a little graphic novel by the name of Zita the Spacegirl, I was well and truly hooked.  Now Ben’s working on a couple different projects and he’s been making the internet rounds talking about them.  Today, here […]

Fusenews: Gravel in the bed

“If kids like a picture book, they’re going to read it at least 50 times, and their parents are going to have to read it with them. Read anything that often, and even minor imperfections start to feel like gravel in the bed.” – Mark Haddon I’ve just returned from speaking at a magnificent writing […]