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I AM FROTHING WITH EXCITEMENT, AND I DON'T EVEN REALLY LISTEN TO AUDIOBOOKS!Add a Comment
“Esiotrot” is tortoise spelled backwards. It’s also the title of a very popular 1990 Roald Dahl illustrated children’s story that involves a love story between two mature adults. And I can tell you that Dustin Hoffman and Dame Judi Dench are going to play the main characters. “Esiotrot” will film next month in England. Hoffman told me he’s a little nervous. “She’s Judi Dench!” But something tells me these two will hit it off famously.
(via 100 Scope Notes)Add a Comment
*puts on Johnny Carson's turban*
...that this story will result in much hubbub.Add a Comment
From the Chicago Tribune:
Legendary author Judy Blume joined the fight against the book's removal from Glen Ellyn District 41, and maybe her clout helped turn the tide. School board members voted 6-1 Monday evening to reinstate the book.
Blume mentioned the Glen Ellyn controversy while appearing Sunday at the Printers Row Lit Fest, where she accepted the Tribune's Young Adult Literary Prize. Blume said she planned to donate the award's $5,000 prize to the National Coalition Against Censorship, which also opposes the book's removal, in the students' honor.
From NBC Chicago:
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"In this ultra-connected age, young people face countless challenges and temptations. Books like "perks" help kids to anticipate what they will likely encounter," said Brett Cooper, a teacher at Hadley Junior High School, speaking in support of the book. "Parents may benefit, too, by reading the book, discussing it with their kids and contemplating alternative responses to similarly challenging circumstances."
As I always get a giggle out of Travis Jonker's One Star Review Guess Who posts, I figured I'd swipe the idea and post the occasional one-star Amazon review of a much-lauded YA title.
So, can you guess what book this disappointed reader is reviewing?:
[Title], by [author] is a book that does not deserve its Newberry. The story has a terrible plot, involving a girl named [heroine] who has a drunken father who is looking for a husband for her. She has some close calls and a big one with suitors, but is repetitive and sulky about her life. The entire story is written in diary form about her life, and it seems like something is going to happen, but nothing really does. [Heroine] really does not enjoy her life. She is mad that suitors are coming and just wants to be free. She sometimes drives you to insanity with her complaining. This book does not deserve its popularity, and it is not written in a suitable way. It is written with only one point of view [Heroine]'s so if your favorite character is not [Heroine] you are IN DEEP DO DO. You just never get someone else's opinion. The book only takes sides with the main character in arguments so it leaves you hanging. What does her father think? To bad, you will never know.Add a Comment
There is one positive about this book. The setting takes place in Briton in the Middle Ages on a farm. It was an exciting place, but in this book nothing happens. The topic of the book stays the same the whole time, so you only have to read to page 60 to know what happens, because in children's' books they all turn out the same. Go ahead and read the book if you feel like it, but remember if you don't like it I said dont read it.
When heading to the beach, the last thing I want to hear about is a shark close by, but it seems like sharks are taking over aquariums, the big screen, and bookshelves all across the country. Even in our office, we have all fallen in love with our newly released spring title Shark Baby by Ann Downer, illustrated by Shennen Bersani.
Shark Baby follows one little shark as he embarks on his ocean-wide journey to find out what kind of shark he is. This book includes other fun sea inhabitants such as various shark species, sea lions, an octopus, and a “mermaid?” Shark Baby will melt the heart of any reader regardless of their original feelings about sharks.
An article from the Wall Street Journal recently reported the new trend in aquarium attractions, diving with sharks! Aquariums all across the globe are beginning their own diving programs including Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, and South Korea. There are even a few aquariums in the United States where shark diving is offered such as Cleveland and Denver. The Georgia Aquarium offers divers a chance to swim with the biggest fish species in the world, the whale shark. This up close and personal encounter with sharks does have a few perks. The environment is more controlled, thus sharks are well-fed and used to the presence of divers. Also, it cuts down on the logistics of traveling to distant dive sites and guarantees a face to face meeting with these creatures. Although this seems like an exciting adventure, I don’t think I will be including it on my bucket list any time soon. You can read the full article by following this link:
If diving with sharks is too much for you, select cities are showing theIMAX 3D film Great White Shark, released May 24. The film supports conservation efforts for the Great White Shark and hopes to tell the “true” story about this often misunderstood creature. This film was three years in the making and takes viewers all over the world to different Great White hot spots including: Los Angeles, New Zealand, South Africa, and Guadalupe Island. Filmmakers hope to show their audiences that the Great White Shark is becoming an endangered species, and that they are not monsters, rather they are just trying to fulfill their position at the top of the Ocean’s food chain. You can check out the trailer for the film using the following link:
After looking at the shark craze that is taking over the summer, I still hope I don’t come face to face with a shark anytime soon. Shark Baby‘s illustrations are the closest I want to be to a shark. For the more courageous individuals, I definitely recommend checking out your nearest aquariums for shark exhibits, Great White Shark showings, or dives! Other suggested titles on this topic from Sylvan Dell Publishing: The Most Dangerous and Ocean Hide and Seek.
*Author: Ann Downer and Illustrator: Shennen Bersani just finished two book presentations and signings this past weekend in Cambridge, MA at Porter Square Books and in Mystic, CT at the Mystic Aquarium. Bersani will have another signing June 29 from 11-1pm in Center Harbor, NH at Bayswater Book Company.
There are only 6 hours left in my Lilly Badilly Literacy Project. I did not meet my goal, but I am thrilled to have raised enough to give 300 books and CD’s away to needy young readers! I am so looking forward to the author visits.
Thank you everyone for your support!Add a Comment
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Trish Cook and Brendan Halpin’s A Really Awesome Mess is a he-said, she-said story about finding your way through pain, anger, loneliness and grief...through love, forgiveness and friendship. And just in case it’s starting to sound a bit too mushy for your tastes, keep in mind that there are also plenty of hijinks, including lots of illegally obtained porn and a purloined piglet.
(I especially love this one-->)
Through June 21st, check out The Neighborhood School's Save the Library Auction for that and lots and lots of other stuff, including pieces by Maira Kalman, Sophie Blackall, Paul O. Zelinsky, Nancy Carpenter, Javaka Steptoe, Disney, Betsy and Ted Lewin, Emily Arnold McCully, Raina Telgemeier, Beth Krommes, Greg Pizzoli, and more.
PLUS, it's for a good cause:
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Oh, it is ON like Bilbo's Song. The Neighborhood School's Save the Library Auction runs from June 10 (Maurice Sendak's birthday) to June 21, 2013, with proceeds going to The Neighborhood School to help save our beloved library. You can get one-of-a-kind art and autographed books from some of the greatest children's book artists working today, so alert the kids, buy new-baby gifts, decorate a child's room, find the perfect piece for your favorite hipster, and LET THE BIDDING BEGIN.
More items will be added throughout the auction.
<!DOCTYPE html> Edyth Bulbring will be a speaker at an SCBWI event to be held at the Sandton Public Library on 2 July 2013. Edyth comes from the Eastern Cape where she attended Collegiate High. She completed a BA at UCT and an MBA at Wits Business School. She has worked as a journalist and political correspondent. She lives in Johannesburg with her partner, three children and dog. To dateAdd a Comment
Janet Gurtler's Who I Kissed is $1.99, and I totally bought it: I've read two of her other books and enjoyed them wholeheartedly.
It occurs to me that I've never written about her books, and I shall have to rectify that situation soon, but in the meantime, know this: she'd make a great pick for fans of YA contemporary romance/friendship stories a la Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Elizabeth Scott.Add a Comment
After one unladylike incident too many, fourteen-year-old Sophronia Angelina Temminnick gets packed off to Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. But the phrase "Finishing School" has more than one meaning, and while Sophronia's family assumes that she'll be off learning the Art of the Perfect Curtsy, Sophronia is delighted to discover that in addition to the expected lessons in How to Pour the Perfect Cup of Tea, Mademoiselle Geraldine's storied institution offers training in combat, espionage, poisons, and assassination.
Pros: Clever and funny and fast-paced, with chapter headings like The Teaching Habits of Werewolves and How Not to Flirt, and character names like Mrs. Barnaclegoose and Pillover Plumleigh-Teignmott. In addition to the General Air of Fun, there are threads that deal with social and economic class. While it deals with issues surrounding differences of all sorts, Sophronia herself has a nicely blase attitude of inclusiveness in re: characters who are different from her in terms of ethnicity, social class, species, etc.
Cons: There's so much going on that A) there's not much depth of character and B) the storyline occasionally feels like a confused snarl. A consistantly entertaining confused snarl, to be sure, but it DOES get quite muddy at times.
Recommended to: Fans of Carriger's Parasol Protectorate books (obviously), as well as fans of Y.S. Lee's The Agency books (though it should be noted that this book is far less serious than the Lee books).
I actually really like both covers, though I suspect that the one on the left will be more attractive to teen readers.
Incoming college freshman Daniel adores his Da:
Because he is a cool grandfather, always was. Retired early from some government job that was something like systems analyst for the Department of Agriculture. Never, ever talked about his work. Might have been because who in his right mind would ever have bothered to ask about a job as boring as that? Might have been.
The thing is, though, as Da slips further and further into dementia, he starts talking more and more about his career... and it quickly becomes clear to Daniel that Da's former profession wasn't boring AT ALL. Soon, men come looking for Da, wanting to shut him up by any means necessary. So Daniel takes him on the run... and it's a decision that will change his life forever.
Pros: Crackling, believable dialogue, and a storyline that features moments of such tension that my skin is crawling just thinking about them. Despite the brevity of Daniel's voice, the complexity of the familial relationships is top-notch.
Cons: None for me, though this is very much going to be one of those Love-It-Or-Hate-It books. If watching a seemingly-well-adjusted kid morph into a sociopath is an unattractive prospect, I'd give it a miss.
Recommended to: Did you like the movie Drive? Then this book might really work for you.
Author page: Carriger.
Author page: Lynch.
Book source (both): ILLed through my library.Add a Comment
Jodi Picoult's first YA novel—which she co-wrote with her daughter, Samantha van Leer—is $1.99 today.
I bought it, because A) I've never read a Jodi Picoult book, which seems vaguely silly as she's so popular with the teen demographic, B) even if I detest it, I'm out less than $2, and C) because of this.
WIN WIN WIN!Add a Comment
On a recent trip to Fernandina Beach, I took photos of different textures in the sand:
My dog Darwin’s huge foot prints
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Neil Malherbe will be a speaker at an SCBWI event to be held at the Sandton Public Library on 2 July 2013. He is the 2013 Winner of the Crystal Kite Award for the Africa Region for The Magyar Conspiracy which also won the Sanlam Silver Prize for Youth Literature in 2011. The book is published by Tafelberg and is Neil's first novel for young adults. Neil Malherbe grew up in Pretoria, where heAdd a Comment
In the summer, most of us pack up and hit the road for summer vacation. Animals are also “on the move” during the summer, though I don’t think they are heading to the nearest amusement park. Scott Cohn’s On the Move released this past spring talks about the different reasons why animals all across the world to migrate throughout the year. The spring and summer months are a great time to witness some of these migratory behaviors.
For example, on the northwest coast, whale enthusiasts flock to catch a glimpse of some of these nomadic species. Watchers may see any species from orcas to humpback, minke, and gray whales. Whales are strict seasonal travelers who migrate south to warm waters for breeding in the late fall and winter months, while traveling back up north in the spring and summer for feeding in cooler waters. For those of us who can’t make the trip west to see this migration, National Geographic has posted a short clip of a gray whale and her calf on their migratory journey.
On the east coast, especially in our backyard, beach goers have a chance to witness another migratory species, the loggerhead turtle. These turtles are coming ashore to nest during the summer months. Many conservation practices have been included in city ordinances in order to ensure the safety and survival of the baby loggerhead turtles. For example, visitors staying at the Wild Dunes resort in Isle of Palms, South Carolina are asked to turn off any outside lights at night so that the baby turtles aren’t confused about which way leads to the ocean. You can keep up with reported nest counters, observe video feed from a nest, and more on the “SC Marine Turtle Conservation Program” page on the website of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
Also, pick up a copy of Scott Cohn’s On the Move, beautifully illustrated by Susan Detwiler, to find out more about animal migratory habits and check out the US Department of Interior’s National Park Service website for more on migration basics. Other suggested titles on this subject from Sylvan Dell include: Carolina’s Story, Turtle Summer, Ocean Seasons, and Turtles in My Sandbox.
When my kids were young, they'd often find nests on the ground after violent spring storms. Sadly, doomed baby birds were sometimes lying in the grass nearby . . . vulnerable to hungry barn cats.
Once, we tried to save a little robin that was hopping around, only a week or so from being ready to fly. I put a ladder against the tree and climbed up, holding the little guy gingerly in one hand, and returned it to its (too low) nest. Trouble was, he jumped right out again. One of the kids ran inside for an Easter basket. We tossed in a few handfuls of grass, tied the handle to the branch near the nest, and, once again, I took the little bird up and placed him inside. Ploop! He was back on the ground before I was.
Stuey Lewis is a quite a character! He’s a smart 2nd grader who has not only problems to deal with, but also funny schemes up his sleeve. The four chapters in this book are each like a short story about something in his life. While each chapter can easily stand alone, they come together to make a fun start to this great new series.
In the first chapter we learn that Stuey has a secret at the beginning of 2nd grade – he’s worried that everyone will find out he isn’t a good reader. Even his best friend, who is an excellent reader, doesn’t know Stuey’s secret. It doesn’t take long for his teacher to realize that something is bothering him, and when he finally confesses his worry to her, she helps him realize everyone conquers reading in their own time.
In the subsequent chapters, we read about the great Halloween caper that Stuey devises, his soccer team trials and the final days of 2nd grade. Each chapter is full of humor interwoven with tender moments.
Whether listening to this story as a read-aloud or reading it on one’s own, we discover that there really is only one Stuey Lewis! I look forward to reading the next book Stuey Lewis Against All Odds: Stories from the Third Grade.
Posted by: Wendy
Greetings! If you live, work, or are vacationing this summer in the San Diego area, consider creating stories with pictures at my class, on the beautiful campus of UCSD in La Jolla!Illustrating Books for Children Instructor: Joy Chu June 26-August 21
During last winter’s 2013 class at UCSD Extension, I asked my students to locate the CIP book summary from any picture book, and use it as the inspiration for an eight-panel wordless picture story.
CIP (“pronounced “sip”) is book publishing jargon for the Library of Congress Publishing Cataloging-in-Publication Data. This is found within the copyright page text of every book. It features a well-constructed one-phrase synopsis of the book’s theme.
“Book Summary: A wordless picture book about three children who go to a park on a rainy day, find some chalk, and draw pictures that come to life.”
Here’s what she came up with:
Book summary: When Kitten mistakes the full moon for a bowl of milk, she ends up tired, wet, and hungry trying to reach it.
Here are Anisi’s results:
At my upcoming summer 2013 UCSD Extension class (June 26-August 21), Illustrating Books for Children (ART 40011) we might look into creating an advent-styled calendar as a possible inspiration for creating a picture story.
Example: Look at the one Zachariah OHora created from his own story. Fun, yes?
Creating a 3D model for your story setting can also serve as an invaluable reference in plotting out your narrative, as well as a guide in drawing scenes from a variety of perspectives. Note how illustrator Sophie Blackall created a diorama for her work-in-progress. She can view her characters from above!
Author/illustrator Barbara McClintock builds cut-paper replicas of her illustrations, in composing her scenes. The following sequence is from her studies for an upcoming book, Adèle and Simon in China (all 3 photos below © Barbara McClintock)Illustrating Books for Children / Art 40011 June 26-August 21
After all of the descriptions of Emily's 'red ropey hair' in the first book, the model on the cover doesn't really jive with the image of her in my mind. Ah, well. Anyway.
It could be argued that I was hard on the first two books in Kady Cross' Steampunk Chronicles. So in the interest of being all fair-minded and whatnot, I will say that they do have some attractive qualities:
Fans of the first two books are likely to like this third installment which, as you've probably gathered by the cover art and the title, focuses mostly on Emily, the Girl Genius Who Can Control Automatons With Her Mind. She gets kidnapped by a Bad Robot (<--heh) who wants her to use her Mechanical Prowess to move the Machinist's brain out of his mostly-dead body and into a fancy new automaton-human hybrid.
It's an undertaking that, not-so-surprisingly, she has issues with beyond the whole abduction thing: bringing the Machinist back would be bad enough, but worse for soft-hearted Emily is the fact that the automaton-human hybrid is a sentient being whose mind, personality, and soul will be destroyed when her body is co-opted by the Machinist. (All of which also serves to allow Emily to come to terms with the sexual assault she survived back in Ireland.)
Yet again, for me, the major issue—beyond the lack of character development—is the repetitive language. Emily continues to 'wee' this and 'wee' that, which is grating, but once again, it was the eyebrows that killed me. I read The Girl with the Iron Touch in review copy form, so I double-checked the following quotes against the Google Books preview and the Amazon preview, and it looks to me that they all made it into the finished copy:
Jack arched a brow at her bad manners. (p. 37)
Mr. Isley arched a brow but wisely remained silent. (p. 51)
She arched a brow, and didn't care that he saw it. (p. 149)
Jack raised a brow at Sam. (p. 157)
Jack raised one brow ever so slightly as his gaze locked with hers. (p. 161)
Emily's heart skipped a beat even as her brow gave a dubious lift. (p. 170)
She arched a brow. (p. 180)
Emily arched a brow. (p. 206)
He arched a brow. (p. 247)
She arched a brow. (p. 256)
Finley arched a brow. (p. 299)
He arched a brow. (p. 321)
Now she was the one whose brow rose. (p. 321)
Griffin swore—the kind of language that made Finley arch a brow. (p. 326)
And, of course, keep in mind that I didn't count any of the 'lowering' or 'pulling together' or 'shooting up'. All in all, these characters expend more energy waggling their eyebrows around than you or I would while working out to a Jillian Michaels DVD.
So, there you have it: if that sort of thing drives you bananas, I'd say give the series a miss and wait for the (hopefully inevitable) CW show.
Book source: Review copy via Netgalley.Add a Comment