February 23, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Archives for November 2014

Roundup: Books That Pass the Bechdel Test

For years in my teens and early twenties, I read chick-lit like it was going out of style. I didn’t mind the label or the candy colored covers or the many many headless women — I was young, and not in love, and these books filled a hunger. I now scorn the love triangle in […]

“Get out there and make something!”: Sylvia’s super awesome new book

Sometimes I wonder what my girlfriends and I would be like today if more models like the super-awesome Sylvia were around when we were kids.  I kinda want every kid to meet her. I first heard of Sylvia from my friend Gary Stager who often shares her story and segments from Sylvia’s Super-Awesome Maker Show […]

No Library Card? No Problem, if You’re a Student in Tacoma, WA

Starting January 2015, the approximately 15,000 middle and high school students enrolled in Tacoma schools will be able to use their student identification cards to check out library materials.

Sunday Reflections: The 12 Blogs of 2014, an introduction and look back at previous blog hops

Every year in December we like to do a little play on the 12 Days of Christmas that we call The 12 Blogs of Christmas. Given the recent debate about holiday programming that is currently taking place in the library world (see here), I kind of wish we had called it something else. Although the […]

Preview: Looney Tunes #222

Our Saturday morning preview this week is based on a classic Saturday morning cartoon: Looney Tunes #222, which is out in comic shops on December 3. Here’s the 411: Bugs in space! Marvin the Martian visits his outer space neighbor Bugs Bunny to borrow a cup of sugar – and to take over the universe! […]

YA A to Z: An Alphabet Soup of YA Authors – the list

Sometime this summer I sent out an email to my TLTers and said, “so . . . I have this idea, what to do you think of this?” And my idea was YA A to Z. As Robin once said, “you have good ideas, you just don’t have small ideas.” And YA A to Z […]

Review of the Day: Lulu and Pip by Nina Gruener

Lulu & Pip By Nina Gurener Photography by Stephanie Rausser Cameron & Company $18.95 ISBN: 978-1-937359-60-7 Ages 3-7 On shelves now To what do we credit the distinct increase in children’s books containing photography this year? I posed that very question to a group of children’s book photographers not that long ago and the answers […]

Friday Finds – November 28,2014

This Week at TLT Sunday Reflections: A Reflection on Everybody Sees the Ants by A. S. King (guest post by Bryson McCrone) View from the Director’s Chair: Guest post by Lynette Pitrak Middle Grade Monday – Anne Ursu Amanda’s review roundup Win a Signed Copy of ATLANTIA by Ally Condie YA A to Z Terry […]

Three things Emily shared

Among the Valenza family traditions are the little app share sessions I have with my daughter.  Emily, an art teacher in Boston, regularly introduces me to tools and platforms I don’t find elsewhere in my network. Here are some of Emily’s current faves from this Thanksgiving: Koma Koma: Anyone, from kindergarten to adult, can use […]

Artists Making Inroads | SLJ Spotlight

Entertainment pioneers overcome discrimination and obstacles in these uplifting nonfiction titles.

YA A to Z: Sara Zarr

Why I chose Sara Zarr: I”m a character-driven reader, and Sara Zarr excels in creating interesting characters who lead rich inner lives. Her characters aren’t always likable (and who cares about that anyway?), but they’re always well-drawn, realistic, and flawed. I often finish a novel by Zarr and think how so many pieces of the […]

This Week’s Comics: Warriors of Madagascar

Camping out for Black Friday deals? Stop by the comic shop first to pick up some new releases to keep the kids happy! IDW Publishing releases a new crossover, Angry Birds Transformers. Papercutz continues the adventures of the original Power Rangers with their second volume of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and Vertical Comics has the […]

It’s a Small World After All (The Prose Edition)

Cynthia Kadohata won the National Book Award last year for THE THING ABOUT LUCK, and she follows that up with another strong book.  Lightning didn’t strike twice, however.  She doesn’t have the most memorable character of the year; that honor would go to Gregory Maguire for Baba Yaga in EGG & SPOON. But it’s still […]

Happy Holiday #Holdshelf Gallery

Holidays: good for spending time with loved ones, bad for #holdshelf posts. Today I bring you a modest offering of books on hold… Here’s John Schumacher’s hold shelf: Here’s mine: Coventry Elementary: Ypsilanti Public Library: See you next month with more #holdshelf!

YA A to Z: Gene Luen Yang

Here we are in the homestretch – I mean, we’re at the letter Y – and not one single graphic novel has appeared on our list, even though statistical evidence suggests that graphic novels are some of the top circulating items in my library system (how about yours?). The truth is, I personally am not […]

Happy Thanksgiving! Now Go Listen to a Podcast

Joyeux Turkey Day, my fellows!  Between bites of sweet potato and rolls, perhaps it might do the soul good to listen to a l’il ole podcast that’s actually a bit perfect for the day.  The “original” Thanksgiving was between Pilgrims and Native Americans, or so we were taught in grade school, yes?  Well perhaps we […]


Thank you for caring about children’s literature. Thank you for reading this blog. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Ferguson Library Provides Calm Refuge for a Torn Community

On November 24 a grand jury in Ferguson, MO, delivered its verdict on the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, by a Ferguson police officer. The St. Louis County grand jury chose not to bring criminal charges against the officer, Darren Wilson; the decision, which was announced just after 8 p.m. CST, set off a night of protests and civil unrest, the most violent including arson, shattered windows, injuries, and, as of press time, a possible murder.

Win a Signed Copy of ATLANTIA by Ally Condie

It’s Thankgsiving, so we thought we would let you know how thankful we are to you by giving away a signed copy of Atlantia by Ally Condie, generously provided by the publisher Dutton Children’s. All you need to do to enter is leave a comment below before Saturday, December 6th at Midnight. Open to U.S. […]

Sir David Attenborough investigates “Fabulous Frogs”| DVD Pick

Fabulous Frogs. (Nature). 60 min. Dist. by PBS. 2014. DVD $19.99. Blu-ray $24.99. ISBN 9781627890731.
Gr 4 Up–Presenter Sir David Attenborough states, “There’s more to frogs than you might suppose,” and this film has the quality sound and visuals viewers expect from this series, in addition to Attenborough’s charming, conversational approach. He clearly loves these creatures. An abundance of interesting facts concerning the 5,000 species of frogs and toads that share our planet will captivate viewers, along with explanations and discussions […]