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January 20, 2015

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In the most recent issue of SLJ

In the most recent issue of SLJ

When I’m reviewing books for professional publications, I stay quiet about them on social media. I’m always really excited once a review comes out to be able to talk about the book, finally! Here’s one of my most recent reviews, which originally appeared in the January 2015 issue of School Library Journal. Gr 9 Up—Fig is six […]

Online Winners!

Online Winners!

Here are the results.  We had 67 voters, and although BROWN GIRL DREAMING had less than a quarter of those first place votes, it still has almost double the next highest book.  It’s much closer on the point spread; it’s got 31 points more than the second book, and it has 31.  It’s our clear […]

YALSA GGNT Top Ten Manga: Tiger and Bunny, vols. 1 and 2

YALSA GGNT Top Ten Manga: Tiger and Bunny, vols. 1 and 2

Superpowered humans known as Next appeared in the world 45 years ago. Today, some of them fight crime in the city of Stern Bild while promoting their corporate sponsors on the hit show HERO TV—but not all Next use their powers for good. Veteran hero Wild Tiger has years of fighting experience but has been […]

Book review: Alex as Well by Alyssa Brugman

Book review: Alex as Well by Alyssa Brugman

“Alex is with me. The other Alex. I am Alex as well. We are the two Alexes. I guess that’s confusing for a lot of people. Sometimes it’s confusing for me too.”   When we first meet Alex we know a few things. Alex has stopped taking some medicine recently. Alex is getting a makeover. […]

Review of the Day: Over the Hills and Far Away collected by Elizabeth Hammill

Review of the Day: Over the Hills and Far Away collected by Elizabeth Hammill

Over the Hills and Far Away: A Treasury of Nursery Rhymes Collected by Elizabeth Hammill Illustrations by Various Candlewick Press $21.99 ISBN: 978-0-7636-7729-9 Ages : All On shelves March 10th Not all nursery rhyme collections are created equal. That is something you discover when you have small children. A parent, even a children’s librarian type […]

2015 Preview Interview: Owlkids Books

2015 Preview Interview: Owlkids Books

Owlkids is a Canadian publisher that more folks in the U.S. should know about. I tracked down Owlkids publisher Karen Boersma to reminisce on 2014 and look ahead to 2015. (click images to enlarge) Travis: Any surprises from last year? Things you were especially happy about at Owlkids? Karen Boersma: Probably the biggest surprise was The Flat […]

Middle Grade Monday – Publishing and Diversity

Middle Grade Monday – Publishing and Diversity

Thanks to a tweet from Anne Ursu, I was made aware of this list of all of the middle grade and YA fiction by African American authors published in the US in 2014. It’s a wonderful resource – you should have a look at it. I’ll warn you, though, before you click on it, that […]

Review: March, Book Two

Review: March, Book Two

Sometimes when I finish reading a book, it takes me a few minutes to pull out of the world I was engrossed in for hours. It’s because a book was so powerful that while I was entrenched in its pages, I only saw and heard what was in the book. Lately, books that evoke this […]

Bearing Witness to Violence, a guest post by author Eric Devine

Bearing Witness to Violence, a guest post by author Eric Devine

Recently I was at a school in Harlem, giving my standard presentation of how I became an author and what my work is about, and I found myself at the section on Press Play, which many of the kids had read, and I was nervous to speak about the story’s roots. There, before me, sat […]

Graphic Novels for Kids: A Year in Review

Graphic Novels for Kids: A Year in Review

I like comics.  I like ‘em a lot.  Always have, and as a librarian I’ve watched with interest the changing mores in my profession concerning their presence in a library setting.  Who has two thumbs and a copy of Seduction of the Innocent on her bedroom bookshelf?  This guy, that’s who! So with the turn […]

Review: Wild About Shapes by Jeremie Fischer

Review: Wild About Shapes by Jeremie Fischer

Wild About Shapes By Jérémie Fischer Flying Eye Books (Nobrow) ISBN: 9781909263383 $16.99 Grades PreK and Up Out March 17, 2015 Find it at: Powell’s Books | Your Library The element of surprise is powerful indeed. Often when a reader opens a book, they have a general sense of what to expect. But once in […]

El Deafo

El Deafo

As Jonathan tallies up your Online Mock votes, I’d love to give some more discussion to EL DEAFO, since it didn’t make our shortlist this year but deserves more exploration. Many of you are stumping for it, Anderson’s Bookshop has it on their Mock Newbery list, and For Those About to Mock hopes it gets a fair shot. […]

Video Sunday: “Some tenderness to the tree, Will.”

Video Sunday: “Some tenderness to the tree, Will.”

Over Christmas break I got to go to an Alamo Drafthouse in Kalamazoo to see Into the Woods. The theater?  Remarkably fun! The show? Um . . . well there were some problems with it. Enjoyable, sure, but . . . some problems. Problems that I suspect would not be replicated in this fabulous pared […]

Sunday Reflections: Impoverished Youth: Over half of public school children now live in low income homes

As I pulled into the Target parking lot we saw him, a man old enough to be my grandfather holding a sign saying he had been laid off and was hungry. The girls and I exited our vehicle and made our way towards the entrance when I noticed The Tween was crying. “It’s so sad,” […]

Sunday Reflections: Impoverished Youth: Over half of public school children now live in low income homes

Sunday Reflections: Impoverished Youth: Over half of public school children now live in low income homes

As I pulled into the Target parking lot we saw him, a man old enough to be my grandfather holding a sign saying he had been laid off and was hungry. The girls and I exited our vehicle and made our way towards the entrance when I noticed The Tween was crying. “It’s so sad,” […]

100 Sideways Miles

100 Sideways Miles, Andrew Smith Simon & Schuster, September 2014 Reviewed from final copy If you were a teenager who spent at least one long night with friends discussing the future, destiny, and the fear that you can’t control the course of your life, 100 Sideways Miles probably reminded you of those moments. Finn Easton, the novel’s […]

One Star Review Guess Who? (#27)

One Star Review Guess Who? (#27)

Can you guess the classic children’s book by its scathing one-star review on Goodreads or Amazon? I really don’t understand this book. Even as a little child I couldn’t help but think, “Why does he want him to eat it so bad?!” and “JUST GET SOME REGULAR FOOD!” Click here for the answer. One Star […]

Easy screencasting your iPad and iPhone (on the Mac side)

Easy screencasting your iPad and iPhone (on the Mac side)

I learned a little trick for creating screencast videos from my iPad and I thought it might be useful for many of you who have a regular need to demo apps. If, like me, you are working on a Mac, you probably already know how powerful your QuickTime Player is for making impromtu videos or […]

Results for the San Diego Mock Newbery

Results for the San Diego Mock Newbery

I’m sorry for posting these results late, but here they are. We had seven participants, but only five voters so we had a much smaller group than Nina. We decided on co-winners and one honor book! Newbery Medal THE FAMILY ROMANOV and WEST OF THE MOON Newbery Honor BROWN GIRL DREAMING On our second ballot, […]

ReadWriteThink rocks: with free apps

ReadWriteThink rocks: with free apps

If it’s been a while since you’ve returned to ReadWriteThink, I urge you to consider a visit today. The quality portal, rich with free resources and sponsored by the International Reading Association (IRA), the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) and the Verizon Foundation has grown even more interactive. So what’s new?  There’s an array […]