March 21, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

‘Druthers’ Meets ‘Leroy Ninker’ at Candlewick| Fall 2014 Preview


At the Candlewick Fall Preview. Photo by Rocco Staino.

Librarians have to wonder what’s in store for them when they arrive at a publisher’s preview and encounter editors wearing devil’s horns. That’s what happened at the Candlewick Fall 2014 preview in June, where the publisher promoted their feature book, Michelle Knudsen’s attention-grabbing Evil Librarian (Sept.). Described as Buffy the Vampire Slayer-meets-Glee, with a super hot male librarian who is a demon in disguise, this paranormal romance will attract both librarians and teens. Libraries also made an appearance at the preview in Bonny Becker’s latest Mouse & Bear book, A Library Book for Bear (July). Illustrated by Kady McDonald Denton, the story finds Mouse persuading his reluctant friend Bear, who already owns seven books and thinks that that’s quite enough, that the library has plenty of other titles he will enjoy. It will surely find a place at preschool storytime.

druthersDads were featured among the upcoming books, such as Druthers (Sept.) and The Brilliant World of Tom Gates (Aug.). The first picture book from noteworthy graphic novelist Matt Phelan, Druthers is the touching story of a father and young daughter who spend a day in imaginary play. Liz Pichon’s “Diary of a Wimpy Kid”-esque, middle-grade The Brilliant World of Tom Gates features a boy who is ashamed of his dad written in the style of the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series. The book is a smash in the United Kingdom, and the U.S. edition contains a glossary so that kids will understand the British terms.

Review: Leroy Ninker Saddles Up by Kate DiCamilloNational Ambassador for Children’s Literature Kate DiCamillo has spun off Leroy Ninker, a favorite character from her “Mercy Watson” series, for Leroy Ninker Saddles Up (Aug). Illustrated by Chris Van Dusen, the book answers the question “What’s a cowboy without a horse?” Speaking of big names, Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen have teamed up for a new picture book, Sam and Dave Dig a Hole (Oct.). The two boys dig and —just read the book to discover what they find

Want to feel old? Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car is turning 50. For the occasion, Candlewick will be issuing a special anniversary edition of the Ian Fleming classic this August.

The event culminated with a visit from Françoise Mouly, cartoon editor for The New Yorker and founder of TOON Books. The company publishes comic books for the young reader and has now introduced titles for readers up to age 10.

Watch the video of Mouly now:

Rocco Staino About Rocco Staino

Rocco Staino @RoccoA is the retired director of the Keefe Library of the North Salem School District in New York. He is now a contributing editor for School Library Journal and also writes for the Huffington Post.



  1. Elizabeth N. says:

    Great idea to spin off Leroy Ninker! I love that little guy, and Chris Van Dusen’s illustrations are just amazing! Can’t wait to read.