December 15, 2017

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This Week’s Comics: My Little Squirrel Girl

Wrap up some of this week’s new releases for a happy holiday surprise. Boom! Studios releases trades of two of their popular titles, Brave Chef Brianna and Misfit City. IDW Publishing sets a holiday mood with Angry Birds Comics Quarterly Monsters and Mistletoe, while Drawn and Quarterly releases the first Moomin comic strip with Moomin […]

Top 20 Books of 2017: 5-1

#20-16 | #15-11 | #10-6 | #5-1 5. Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by Rita Williams-Garcia, illustrated by Frank Morrison [Amistad | Grades 3-7] Because it contains 176 perfect pages. -John Click here for additional resources from Watch. Connect. Read. 4. All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson [Dial | Grades 4-7] Because even if your family re-enacts […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day Fifteen: 2017 Fairy Tales / Folktales

Ah! One of my favorite lists. Not a long one, to be sure, but beloved. As I’m sure you’ve heard me say far too many times, in the history of children’s librarianship there was once a plethora of folktales and fairytales published every single year. Some of them were great, some them were hugely problematic, […]

Review: ‘Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II’ #1

Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II Writer: James Tynion IV Artist: Freddie Williams II DC Comics; $3.99 Rated T for Teen Batman and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles may sound like they go together about as well as some of the pizza toppings enjoyed by the latter in their original cartoon iteration—you know, marshmallows and pepperoni, […]

Post-it Note Reviews of Elementary and Middle Grade Books

Now that I work in an elementary library, I’m reading a lot more titles for younger readers. Rather than review all of them like I usually do, I’m stealing Karen’s Post-it note review idea and sharing the titles with you that way. It’s been super interesting to me to see what the students (grades K-5) […]

Top 20 Books of 2017: 10-6

#20-16 | #15-11 | #10-6 | #5-1 10. Why Am I Me? by Paige Britt, illustrated by Selina Alko and Sean Qualls [Scholastic Press | Grades Pre-K-3] Because it celebrates curiosity, a hard-to-answer question, diversity, you, and me in a beautiful and genuine way. -John Click here for additional resources from Watch. Connect. Read. 9. The Good for […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day Fourteen – 2017 Fabulous Photography

Well, folks, I’m sick. Sick as a dog. Sick as a dog on a log in a bog (I think I’ve been writing up picture books too long). Fortunately, and by complete coincidence, today’s post is going to be an easy one. Folks that know me well are aware that there was a time when, […]

Review: Dream Jumper 2

It’s been a while since I read the first volume of Dream Jumper, but the story starts off at a fast pace. It doesn’t really fill in what happened before, so readers will benefit from a quick re-read to appreciate the nuanced details. Dream Jumper: Curse of the Harvester By Greg Grunberg. Lucas Turnbloom Graphix. […]

Review: Dream Jumper 2

It’s been a while since I read the first volume of Dream Jumper, but the story starts off at a fast pace. It doesn’t really fill in what happened before, so readers will benefit from a quick re-read to appreciate the nuanced details. Dream Jumper: Curse of the Harvester By Greg Grunberg. Lucas Turnbloom Graphix. […]

My favorite tools: Trello

This is the first of a series of post on productivity and organizational tools that I’m finding useful in my library work. I’ve been using Trello off and on, for professional and personal projects, since 2014. It’s visually appealing, simple to use, and dovetails nicely with Google apps. Trello, at its most basic, is a collection […]

Everything I Thought I Knew About Furries is Wrong as I Learned from My Teens

I started to notice my teens’ interest in furries when one of my teens showed up to a downtown event wearing a panda suit she had bought online. She had scrimped and saved and was the very proud owner of this new suit that allowed her to walk around town looking like a panda character […]

First Time a Charm?

In a comment from an earlier post, Genevieve said:  “I wish there was a Morris equivalent for children’s books.”  It’s an interesting idea.  YALSA started the Morris Award in 2009 to honor a “first time author writing for teens.”  ALSC doesn’t have a similar award at this point, and the Newbery Terms and Criteria tell […]

Top 20 Books of 2017: 15-11

#20-16 | #15-11 | #10-6 | #5-1 15. You Don’t Want a Unicorn! by Ame Dyckman, illustrated by Liz Climo [Little, Brown | Grades K-2] Because you will never look at a pink cupcake the same way again. -John Click here for additional resources from Watch. Connect. Read. 14. One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance by […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day Thirteen – 2017 Picture Books With a Message

Let’s have some fun defining our terms. What exactly do I mean when I say “books with a message”? Basically, I’m talking about books that wear their hearts on their sleeves. We all know that in their earliest form, when people were initially coming up with the idea of making literature for children, the primary […]

18 2018 Middle Grade Books to Have on Your Radar

Like many of you (I’m guessing), I keep multiple reading-related lists. I keep track of what I read each year. I keep track of what ARCs I’ve gotten and hope to read. I keep track of what books I either want to get when they come out or hope to track down as ARCs but haven’t […]

Top 20 Books of 2017: 20-16

#20-16 | #15-11 | #10-6 | #5-1 Some things to know about this list: It’s a collaboration between John Schumacher and I. It’s a collection of our favorite books of 2016 for grades K-6. It’s a countdown from 20 to 1, with five books revealed each day. In terms of format, anything goes. You’ll see picture books, graphic […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day Twelve – 2017 Translated Picture Books

Initially I think I was going to call this list “2017 Imports” but that was a bit on the vague side. And was I really going to include all the Australian, British, Irish, Canadian, etc. books I admired this year? Seems a bit much. No, let’s instead offer an homage to the delightful translations of […]

Is Yuyi Morales The World’s Most Inspiring Illustrator?

COLBY: I love working on this audio show. Sharing stories like the one we get to share today makes my heart happy. Yuyi’s journey to becoming a book creator is one of the most inspirational stories that we have ever shared here on The Yarn. I hope the episode brings you as much joy and inspiration […]

What Do You Do With a Chance?

What Do You Do With a Chance? Written by Kobi Yamada and Illustrated by Mae Besom Forthcoming in Feb. 2018 by Compendium Inc. ISBN 978-1-943-20073-3 Grades PreK-3   Book Review “I wished I had taken my chance. I realized I had wanted it, but I still didn’t know if I had the courage.” The struggle […]

#SJYALIt: Why Inclusive, Respectful & Wildly Diverse Rep in YA Lit Matters, a guest post by author Erica Cameron

 Today, author Erica Cameron joins us as part of our Social Justice in YALit Discussion. You can find all of the #SJYALit Posts here. Books are windows, not only into other people’s lives, but into their minds. For those who have never met someone whose experience of the world is different to their own, inclusive […]