February 21, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Archives for August 2017

You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins | SLJ Review

PERKINS, Mitali. You Bring the Distant Near. 320p. Farrar. Sept. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780374304904.

Gr 9 Up –Related in the alternating voices of two sisters and their respective daughters, this work captures the unique and, at times, fraught experience of navigating multiple cultures. Perkins examines the delicate balance between meeting family expectations and attaining personal happiness, a common motif in immigrant narratives. The story opens in 1970s New York, where the Das family has immigrated from England in hopes of planting roots […]

Remembering Dianne de Las Casas, Founder of Picture Book Month

Friends and family members gathered in Metairie, LA, to celebrate the life of de Las Casas, author, storyteller, and creator of Picture Book Month.

Choosing Whose Words Have Power Over Us, a guest post by author Meg Kassel

I loved the movie Labyrinth as a little kid. Aside from being fascinated with David Bowie, I liked the main character, Sarah (Jennifer Connelly), whose baby brother is stolen by Jareth (Bowie), the Goblin King. The only way to get him back is to defeat a formidable labyrinth, with traps and twists that render it […]

Notes on August 2017

In August . . . . . . I posed a challenge. It was the third installment of Name That LEGO Book Cover! GOOD NIGHT, HUGO pic.twitter.com/oZzpN59dX7 — Travis Jonker (@100scopenotes) August 12, 2017 . . . Hugo Cabret continued to be my technology north star. He showed me how to use Instagram Face Filters. Thanks, Hugo. . […]

A Different Pond by Bao Phi | SLJ Review

PHI, Bao. A Different Pond. illus. by Thi Bui. 32p. Capstone. Aug. 2017. Tr $15.95. ISBN 9781623708030.

K-Gr 2 –This gorgeous tale about a father/son fishing trip shows the interconnectedness of family and the inexorable way that generational history impacts the present. The story is told from the boy’s perspective, as his father wakes him long before dawn to go fishing. Although the child enjoys the outing as a special adventure with his dad, they are fishing for food, not sport, and they […]

Meet Tamiko Brown, SLJ’s 2017 School Librarian of the Year

Tamiko Brown embraces innovation at the Ed White E-STEM Magnet School in El Lago, TX.

This article was published in School Library Journal's September 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Links: New Rogue One Comic on the Way

IDW, which will launch a line of all-ages Star Wars Adventures comics in September, will also publish a graphic novel, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in December. Another graphic novel, The Force Awakens, will be out later this month. Darryl Cunningham talks about his new book, Graphic Science, which collects mini-biographies of seven people […]

Book Review: Project Semicolon: Your Story Isn’t Over by Amy Bleuel

Publisher’s description For fans of PostSecret, Humans of New York, and If You Feel Too Much, this collection from suicide-awareness organization Project Semicolon features stories and photos from those struggling with mental illness. Project Semicolon began in 2013 to spread a message of hope: No one struggling with a mental illness is alone; you, too, can survive and […]

One and Done: Serving on ALSC Committees and Never Coming Back

Eleven years ago I served on the Newbery committee that would award Susan Patron’s The Higher Power of Lucky one of the loftiest children’s literary awards in the land. Ten years later I was tapped to serve as the chair of the Arbuthnot Lecture committee.  Why the gap in time?  In my particular case it […]

Teen Book Buzz – Fall 2017

Don’t miss your chance to discover the hottest new titles in this SLJ 2017 Teen Book Buzz webcast! From ghost stories to tales of unlikely friendships, travel and adventure to KGB spies, these hot off the press selections are chock full of teen appeal.
View On Demand

Offended at Open Mic | Scales on Censorship

A controversial student poetry reading; controlling bookmobile offerings; questioning ‘James and the Giant Peach.’

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Swing It, Sunny by Jennifer L. Holm | SLJ Review

HOLM, Jennifer L. Swing It, Sunny. illus. by Matthew Holm. 224p. Scholastic/Graphix. Sept. 2017. Tr $24.99. ISBN 9780545741705. pap. 12.99. ISBN 9780545741729.

Gr 4-6 –It’s autumn of 1976, and Sunny has just entered middle school. Her older brother, Dale, has been sent to boarding school to help with his drug problem, and life isn’t the same at home. But Sunny tries to stay positive. She and her best friend plan their Halloween costumes, watch popular TV shows, listen to records, and read comics. […]

#MHYALit: Seven Responses for Those Left Behind, a guest post by author Kat Colmer

Today we are honored to host author Kat Colmer as part of the #MHYALit Discussion. See all of the posts in our Mental Health in Young Adult Literature series here or by clicking on the #MHYALit tag below. The release of Thirteen Reasons Why on Netflix earlier this year has thrust the issue of teen […]

Professional Reading on Leadership, Differentiated Learning, & More

Three recent titles on providing literary instruction to all students, making the best use of children’s literature, and taking a leadership role in schools.

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

9 Nonfiction Series for Back-to-School Reading

New series nonfiction covering a range of subjects from refugees to the International Space Station.

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Blast from the (Recent) Past: 13 Great Middle Grade and YA

Set between 1969 and 2010, these works of historical fiction take readers back to a time that seems at once modern and long ago

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Buddha: An Enlightened Life by Kieron Moore | SLJ Review

MOORE, Kieron. Buddha: An Enlightened Life. illus. by Rajesh Nagulakonda. 160p. Campfire. Jul. 2017. pap. $16.99. ISBN 9789381182291.

Gr 8 Up –This phantasmagoric and dreamy graphic novel follows the life of Siddhartha Gautama and the spread of Buddhism, from the ancient city of Kapilavastu to all over the world. As the powerful rulers King Suddhodana and Queen Maya welcome a son into the world, the wisest elder predicts he will be one of two things: a mighty king or a great spiritual leader. […]

Blog Tour Book Review: The First Rule of Punk by Celia C. Pérez

  From the publisher: From debut author and longtime zine-maker Celia C. Pérez, The First Rule of Punk is a wry and heartfelt exploration of friendship, finding your place, and learning to rock out like no one’s watching.  There are no shortcuts to surviving your first day at a new school—you can’t fix it with duct tape […]

Review: ‘Surfside Girls: The Secret of Danger Point’

Surfside Girls: The Secret of Danger Point Writer/artist: Kim Dwinell Top Shelf Productions; $19.99 Former real-life surfside girl turned animator Kim Dwinell makes her graphic novel debut with a pretty powerful argument for the old saw that you should write (and, here, draw) what you know. Surfside Girls: The Secret of Danger Point is a […]

All the Wind in the World by Samantha Mabry | SLJ Review

MABRY, Samantha. All the Wind in the World. 272p. Algonquin. Oct. 2017. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781616206666.

Gr 9 Up –Mabry crafts a strong romantic arc set at The Real Marvelous, a maguey ranch rumored to be cursed in the magically realistic Southwest Texas desert. Sarah Jacqueline Crow and James Holt end up at the strange farm following a violent dust storm, and Sarah’s involvement in the accidental death of a maguey foreman elsewhere. Considered outlaws, the two perilously hide their identities and their […]