On my post the other day about gender representation in books, I mentioned as an afterthought the problem wordless picture books present in identifying gender. I thought the topic deserved a post of its own. It’s not some kind of queer-theory intellectual problem, either, as books that don’t identify the gender of its characters play hell with a […]
Please join us for the 2015 Zena Sutherland Lecture, “A Pair of Jacks to Open,” with Jack Gantos. Friday May 1, Harold Washington Library in Chicago, 7:30PM. The lecture is free but tickets are required.
A poster in our office lobby for the upcoming Simmons International Women’s Film Forum alerted me to the interestingly low–29%–number of female protagonists in films for children.* I guess it ain’t all Disney Princesses after all. How does this compare with the numbers in books for children? I asked myself. The gender disparity had been on my […]
[As an experiment last fall, I invited self-publishers to submit their best new titles for review. About a dozen heeded the call, and I am reviewing their books in this space.] Mary-Ellen O’Keefe’s Word-Speaking Diet; written by Tom Neely; illustrated by Sharad Kumar. Tom Neely, 2014. 36pp. ISBN 978-1502-44425-7. Paper ed. $9.97. Mary-Ellen has always been a […]
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[As an experiment last fall, I invited self-publishers to submit their best new titles for review. About a dozen heeded the call, and I am reviewing their books in this space.] Bandits Peak; by Chris Eboch. Pig River Press, 2015. 173pp. ISBN 0-978-0692346006. Paper ed. $9.99 Jesse is out for a wander in the wilderness he loves […]
We saw the new Cinderella last night and you should see it too. What I loved most was that it was genuinely a children’s movie. While Cate Blanchette as the stepmother and Helena Bonham-Carter as the fairy godmother were on hand to provide some camp (and there was a PG-pushing plethora of men in tights), neither […]
[As an experiment last fall, I invited self-publishers to submit their best new titles for review. About a dozen heeded the call, and I am reviewing their books in this space.] The Legend of Dust Bunnies: A Fairy’s Tale; written byMichelle R. Eastman; illustrated by Kevin Richter. Byway Press, 2014. 40pp. ISBN 978-0-9916244-8-5. Paper ed. 14.95. […]
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[As an experiment last fall, I invited self-publishers to submit their best new titles for review. About a dozen heeded the call, and I am reviewing their books in this space.] A Cape!; written and illustrated by Marty Kelley. Marty Kelley, 2014. 32.pp. ISBN 978-0-692-22596. 16.95. Who needs pants? Not the superhero of this story, for whom briefs, […]
The Strength of Wild Horses; by Sandra Tayler; illus. by Angela Call. Tayler Corporation, 2014. 32.pp. ISBN 978-0-9835746-8. 12.95. Amy, who resembles Pippi Longstocking by way of Tony Ross, has lots of great ideas but, like wild horses, they can run too fast. “And when the run was over, there was Amy, and the mess.” […]
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Seasonally enough, last night I attended Blizzard of Voices, an oratorio by Paul Moravec (husband to your friend and mine Wendy Lamb). While you might have thought the warm and woody Jordan Hall would have been an oasis in Boston’s horrible weather, Moravec’s commemoration of the 1888 Schoolhouse Blizzard was terrible–in the exactest sense–in its evocation of […]
Drawbridges Open and Close; by Patrick T. McBriarty; illus. by Johanna H. Kim. Curly Press, 2014. 40pp. ISBN 978-1-941216-02-6. $15.95 Gr. K-3. I was glad I had read this book prior to my recent visit to Ft. Lauderdale, where everybody gets around by car, negotiating a host of drawbridges back and forth across the Intracoastal […]
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Nina Lindsay has a terrific article up at SLJ about this year’s ALA Award winners and What It All Might Mean. And in my latest editorial, I write about the need to value art from outsiders as well as insiders. Can we have both? Can we HAVE IT ALL?
Irene Smalls, who is moderating the children’s book panel I told you about, has sent along this bibliography of books she put together to encourage children–particularly African American children–to be more active. Or, as my mother always said,” Go out and play.” Thank goodness Daylight Saving Time is less than two weeks away–I got in […]
I’m a judge for this year’s Pannell Award for children’s bookselling and our slate of nominees has been announced. Anything you want to tell me?
The March cover of the Horn Book, that is. Gertrude and the boys should be in your mailbox soonish–we lost a couple of days due to the weather. But dePaola’s springtime palette gives me hope!
Just a quick note to say that tomorrow’s panel about writing for children has been rescheduled to NEXT Saturday because of impending weather. Maybe spring can really hang you up the most but I can’t wait for it to get here.
This Saturday I will be speaking on a panel organized by Irene Smalls for people interested in writing books for children. At the Dudley Branch Library, 65 Warren Street in Roxbury, the panel, free and open to all comers, will run from 3:00 to 4:45, optionally followed by dinner (ten bucks) at Haley House. I […]
Martha and I are teaching a class–that is, we are trying to teach a class, which has thus far been cancelled twice due to snow–on reviewing, and we’ve just assigned the students Malinda Lo’s provocative series of essays about reviewing and diversity. You all should take a look, too. It’s reminding me of a too-brief […]
The following books will receive starred reviews in the March/April 2015 issue of the Horn Book Magazine: Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña; illus. by Christian Robinson (Putnam) Wolfie the Bunny by Ame Dyckman; illus. by Zachariah OHora (Little, Brown) Meet the Dullards by Sara Pennypacker; illus. by Daniel Salmieri (Balzer […]
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I’m really enjoying the discussions over on Calling Caldecott about this year’s winners. The comments, divvied up between the last two posts, mostly address 1) why The Farmer and the Clown didn’t get any love, 2) why This One Summer DID, and 3) why there are six honor books, a new record. The last question provokes in […]
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