November 18, 2017

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SLJ Regrets an Error, Updates Reviewer Guidelines

SLJ has corrected a serious error, which appeared in a 2013 review of Tim Tharp’s audiobook Mojo.

Diversity Hashtags Hijacked

YA authors A.C. Thomas and Laura Silverman were among the latest victims of online hate campaigns, an increasingly common and visible problem.

Banned Books Are Often Diverse Books. Check the Stats.

Twenty-nine books on ALA’s top 10 challenged books lists from 2001–2015 have diverse content.

“When We Was Fierce” Pulled as Demand Grows for More #OwnVoices Stories

Amid increasing controversy around author e.E. Charlton-Trujillo’s use of a made-up dialect along with what some deem as stereotypical characters in her most recent book, Candlewick Press has postponed publication.

Schools Look To Talk Race, Violence, and Tolerance with Students

As the start of school approaches, educators around the country are grappling with the best way to support students who have questions about the shootings in the news.

How Canada Publishes So Many Diverse Children’s Books

With Groundwood Books’s Bologna win, the Canadian publishing industry’s reputation for quality and diversity is getting tough to beat.

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

“There Is a Tribe of Kids” Generates Controversy Among Librarians

Lane Smith’s picture book has sparked debate around connecting the word “tribe” with images of children in lush natural surroundings with feathers in their hair.

Librarian Creates #BlackLivesMatter Booklist for Teens

Chelsea Couillard-Smith, a librarian at Hennepin County (MN) Library, created a #blacklivesmatter booklist for teens.

ALA 2016: Highlights of Diversity Panel Discussion

“Not Your Granny’s Dinner Conversation: Diversity, Race, Sex and Gender” featured seven children’s literature experts, all addressing tough questions and hot topics.

Pat Mora on Día, the Arbuthnot Lecture, and Diverse Books: 20 Years and Counting

Author Pat Mora’s April 15 Arbuthnot Lecture at Santa Barbara (CA) City College coincided with the 20th anniversary of the celebration she founded, “El día de los niños/ El día de los libros” (Children’s Day/Book Day), commonly known as “Día.”

Diverse Debuts | Adult Books 4 Teens

We examine debut authors whose works have unique perspectives on culture, from Mona Awad’s 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat girl, a novel comprised of short stories that take on fat-shaming, to Kaitlyn Greenidge’s We Love You, Charlie Freeman a rich and complex work about an African American family teaching a chimpanzee sign-language.

After Cancelling 2016 National Institute, ALSC Regroups To Serve Members

ALSC president Andrew Medlar details reasons for cancelling the 2016 Institute in North Carolina, the costs incurred, and how ALSC will make sure the educational experience isn’t lost.

Experts Focus on Censorship at Bank Street Conference

At “Who Are You To Say?”, an event held in New York City on April 16, authors and kid lit experts weighed in on where to draw the line between being aware and censoring.

Authors Pen Letter of Support to NC Youth

A North Carolina law seen as LGBT discrimination has prompted roughly 270 members of the kid lit community to show their support for all young readers.

Seven Self-Published Children’s Books That Celebrate Diversity | Indie Voices

In the inaugural Indie Voices column, librarian Amy Martin curates a strong list of self-published titles that depict and celebrate diversity.

Full Steam Ahead for Sixth Grader Gathering Books with Black Girl Protagonists

Tired of reading assigned books about “white boys and dogs,” 11-year-old Marley Dias decided to collect 1,000 books with protagonists who are black girls and send them to Jamaica. The hashtag #1000BlackGirlBooks has spread the word and spurred donations.

What’s Trending? What Is, What Was, What’s Soon to Be in Kid Lit

From evil hummingbirds and odd picture book cameos, to how things stand on diversity, Betsy Bird considers where we are and where children’s books might be headed in 2016.

This article was published in School Library Journal's January 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

NYC DOE Conference: Reaching Diverse Learners

“Libraries for ALL Learners” was this year’s theme at the New York City Department of Education’s Library Services Annual Fall Conference, which convened at CitiField in Flushing. The session encompassed diversity in culture, ability, learning styles, gender and sexual identity.

Dream On, Amber by Emma Shevah | SLJ Review

SHEVAH, Emma. Dream On, Amber. illus. by Helen Crawford-White. 272p. Sourcebooks Jabberwocky. Oct. 2015. Tr $12.99. ISBN 9781492622505.

Gr 4-6Eleven-year-old Ambra Alessandra Leola Kimiko Miyamoto (please, just call her Amber) navigates middle school embarrassments, awkward friendships, a first crush, an intimidating bully, and the realities of being a biracial tween in this smart and funny middle grade debut, first published in the UK. Half Italian and half Japanese, Amber has always felt a bit different than her peers in South London. […]

Mixed Me by Taye Diggs and Shane W. Evans | SLJ Review

DIGGS, Taye. Mixed Me! illus. by Shane W. Evans. 40p. Feiwel & Friends. Oct. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781250047199.
Gr 2-5–A little boy with wildly curly hair navigates the social terrain of being a biracial child. Diggs’s short, choppy, rhyming verses convey the busyness of a kid who likes “to go FAST!” All through his day he encounters people staring and asking questions. “See, my dad’s a deep brown and my mom’s rich cream and honey. Then people see me, and […]