Artist and author Molly Idle talks about her latest book, her life, and her obsession with Prismacolor pencils.
About Rick Margolis
Rick Margolis was executive editor for SLJ.
In honor of National Poetry Month, children’s poet laureate J. Patrick Lewis picks his favorite collections for kids.
SLJ Talks to Author Andrea Cheng: Her latest book, ‘Etched in Clay,’ charts the courageous life of Dave the potter | Under Cover
Author Andrea Cheng’s latest book, ‘Etched in Clay,’ charts the courageous life of Dave the potter, a 19th-century slave who became an accomplished artist.
Life After Death: Susin Nielsen’s tenderhearted novel, ‘The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen,’ explores the aftermath of a school shooting | Under Cover January 2013
Canadian novelist Susin Nielsen talks about her novel The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen, which explores the aftermath of a high school shooting.
Everything from A to Z: Vincent X. Kirsch adds some serious fun to ‘Noah Webster & His Words’ | Under Cover
Jeri Chase Ferris’s picture book Noah Webster & His Words is a great read, but it could have been a snoozer without your witty illustrations. How’d you react when editor Kate O’Sullivan offered you the assignment?
Being someone who’s very fond of words, I started looking at other books that were done about Webster, and not to degrade them, but they were very dry, realistic, watercolory, and very highly rendered. Noah Webster looked like some [...]
Your latest novel is a dark and disturbing story about a 16-year-old named Angel who moves in with a guy she meets at the mall and is lured into a life of drugs, violence, and prostitution. It must have been tough to write.
I tried to put it off as long as I could. I wrote Heck Superhero and Tom Finder—both about homeless boys—and I knew that someday I was going to have to write a book about a [...]
In This Is Not My Hat, a minnow steals a big fish’s bowler hat while he’s asleep. Part of what makes your art so striking is that the water, or background, is black instead of blue.
Initially, it was more of a mid-tone, like a teal, or a green. But I was fighting it value-wise. Also, since the fishes’ eyes are such a big part of the storytelling, the darker you can get behind them, the more their eyes are going to pop.
Island: A Story of the Galápagos is packed with fascinating, well-researched facts about this archipelago and your exquisite paintings of its unique flora and fauna. How’d the idea come to you?
While working on my last picture book, Coral Reefs, I was reading a lot about evolution, and I was thinking, “Well, maybe I could do a book about evolution.” But how could I do it in a way that was a little different? Nothing [...]
Does your novel have a message for readers?
The message is that if you are a girl, you can do anything. I really didn’t want my female characters to feel stopped by the fact that they were female. I wanted them to be able to control their lives, to do what they were good at, and what they wanted to do regardless of what society’s expectations were. I think that’s a good message for modern girls, as well, and that they need reminding about.
Subscribe to SLJ Magazine Bloody Good: Don’t miss J. Anderson Coats’s debut, ‘The Wicked and the Just’ | Under Cover
Your novel, The Wicked and the Just, has two feisty 13th-century teens: Cecily, whose father forces her to move to Wales from England to seek a better life, and Gwenhwyfar, her resentful servant who lost everything when the British took over her town. Why Wales? Most folks have never even heard of it!