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Viewing: Blog Posts from All 1562 Blogs, dated 8/4/2012 [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 99
1. 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #291: FeaturingUp-and-Coming Illustrator, Jördis Brier

“She left the house, sad and disappointed,
to go on a quest in order to find her brothers.”

(Click to enlarge)

It’s gonna get dark and heavy and raw around here this morning, y’all.

However, if you look at 7-Imp’s home page right now, you’ll see some cute, fluffy dogs; some endearing cats; a screamingly adorable baby bear; a dancing egg; and even more happy happy joy joy (the wonderfully creepy bats from The Brothers Hilts being the one exception). So, I say it’s high time we got ominous and grim (and Grimm) around here, don’t you think? Hey, it’s only fair, and it’s my turn, says The Sinister, given last week was a heartwarming story about books.

That’s to say: If you’re still sipping your coffee and aren’t in the mood to read about bones and blood and angry ravens tearing at someone and straight-up murder as only fairy tales (or, in this case, fairy tale adaptations) can tell ‘em, consider yourself warned now.

It’s the first Sunday of the month, which means we get to look at the work of a student or brand-new illustrator, and today I’ve got a German student of illustration, named Jördis Brier, who was actually once a student of American illustrator Shadra Strickland. One of Jördis’s classroom projects (not yet published) is the subject of today’s post, and I’m going to let her tell you more about it. (more…)

17 Comments on 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #291: FeaturingUp-and-Coming Illustrator, Jördis Brier, last added: 8/6/2012
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2. Oppa Gangnum Style

I'm not gonna lie, this video made me laugh so hard. And it is surprisingly making the rounds. But I can't help but wonder if people are finding it as funny as I am given the language barrier. PSY is always hysterical, but this video of his is definitely his funniest.

The main chorus is Oppa Gangnam Style. What it means:

Gangnam is like the NYC Fifth Avenue of Seoul. It's the wealthy area of Seoul so Gangnam style is like being a Boozhee. You know, wealthy snob, etc.

Oppa means older brother but is also a term used by girls to call older guys they may be close to.

The video is him being this rich over the top guy who thinks he's all that with the ladies. Also - kind of a social commentary on how materialistic Koreans can be. But man is it funny. The dancing in the parking lot between the guy with the Beatle hairstyle in the yellow vinyl suit and PSY is enough to pee my pants.

Anyway - the ARC giveaway is still going on so don't forget to enter below!

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3. 8/4 Chum Bucket results

Tonight I got 43 queries in the Chum Bucket. Here's the breakdown of what the responses looked like:

Just not for me/didn't grab me: 14
By far and away the biggest category.  What you should take away from this is all those form rejections do not mean your writing sucks. It means you're just writing something that's not
my cup of tea.  This is why you query widely. This is why you don't set your heart on one agent and think the world will end if s/he doesn't take you on.

The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Not my category: 10
I get a lot of things that aren't my categories cause I've sold things that aren't categories I seek out or sign people for.  This is why you look at what the agent is looking for in addition to what s/he has sold.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Can't sell this: 4
I'm getting a little paranoid about how often I'm saying this cause I have this image of people saying "janet reid said she can't sell this" and about a zillion people thinking it means I can't sell anything.  I'm not good at selling some kinds of books. Other agents are.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Query improvement suggestions: 4 
I made suggestions for improving queries to four people. I'm hoping they don't form a mob and come after me.  This is where I often get in to trouble with authors. Unasked for advice isn't always received the way I hope. 
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been:  most likely form rejections

Didn't want to read this: 3
Some of you are writing stuff that is so depressing it just makes me wonder how you got through the entire novel.  I really really think characters have to be interesting and compelling, and depressed sad characters aren't that.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Writing: 2 
The writing just wasn't up to publication standards.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Asked for more info: 2
A couple of queriers are repeat visitors and I needed more info.  
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: NOT form rejections

Referral: 1
Not for me, but one of my colleagues should hear from you.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: NOT form rejections

What is the book about?: 2
If you don't tell me what the book is about it's a rejection.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

This query is a mess to the point I said No: 1
These usually involve a plea to read the QueryShark blog.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections sometimes bolding the link to QueryShark.

too short for category: 1
Novels generally need to run more than 60K and less than 120K. Anything outside
those guidelines gets a quizzical read. Most often I can see from the query or pages that the length is a problem in the writing, not the story.
The non-Chum Bucket reply would have been: form rejections

Marked up pages/revised query welcome: 1

20 Comments on 8/4 Chum Bucket results, last added: 8/6/2012
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4. 2012 Children’s Novel Competition

This writing competition is for women (sorry guys) who have not had a novel published. It looks good, except that it cost 25 pounds to enter, which is $39.10. You can pay using Paypal and they will make sure of the conversion rate for you.

The competition is open to children’s novels in any genre by previously unpublished women novelists, but it must be for children who are able to read for themselves or for young adults. Crossover fiction (i.e. that aimed at children and adults) is eligible. Nonfiction, and fiction intended for adults is not eligible. To qualify as a novel, your book must total at least 30,000 words.


Here are the Guidelines:


  • Your novel can be in any genre, but must be for children who are able to read for themselves or for young adults. Crossover fiction (i.e. that aimed at children and adults) is eligible. Nonfiction, and fiction intended for adults is not eligible. To qualify as a novel, your book must total at least 30,000 words.
  • You may submit up to 3,000 words, which must be the first 3,000 words of the novel. Any preface is included in your 3,000 words. There is no need to submit a synopsis.
  • Please complete your novel before entering. Shortlisted entrants will be asked to submit a full manuscript and synopsis for the final stages of the judging process. Entrants unable to comply will be disqualified.
  • Please submit your work typed, double-spaced on A4-sized paper, single sided, with pages numbered.
  • Your novel will be judged anonymously, so do not put your name on the pages of your novel. Use a separate cover page with your name, address, telephone number and email address, plus the title of the novel you are submitting.
  • No alterations may be made to a novel extract once submitted.
  • Your submission will not be returned, so please keep a copy. If you want confirmation that we have received your postal entry, please enclose an SAE labeled ‘Acknowledgement’. We do not send copies of the result to entrants.
  • The winner will be contacted in February 2013 and announced in the Mar/Apr/May 2013 issue of Mslexia.
  • Copyright for each novel remains with the author. Mslexia will negotiate the right to use extracts from the winning novel in its magazine and on its website, as well as using extracts from the novel and any related material for PR purposes.


  • This is a competition for unpublished novelists. Women who have had a novel published commercially, for any age group, in any country, are not eligible.
  • Women who have had other types of books published (e.g. poetry, memoir, nonfiction), but have not had a novel published, are eligible.
  • Self-published manuscripts are eligible.
  • Novels should be in English (or English dialect) and should not have been published or accepted for publication by a commercial publisher.
  • Novels should not be a translation of another author’s work.
  • You do not have to subscribe to Mslexia to be eligible, but you do have to be a woman. We will accept novels from women of any nationality from any country.
  • Employees of Mslexia are not eligible.


  • Send your novel extract by post or enter online.
  • If entering by post, mark your envelope ‘Children’s Novel Competition’ and send it postmarked no later than 10 September 2012 to Mslexia Publications Ltd, PO Box 656, Freepost NEA5566, Newcastle upon Tyne

    0 Comments on 2012 Children’s Novel Competition as of 8/6/2012 5:58:00 AM
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5. Gail Tsukiyama launches her newest novel A Hundred Flowers and discusses her involvement in our Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach Project

A member of our PaperTigers’ family, best selling author Gail Tsukiyama was interviewed today on Sedge Thomson’s West Coast Live radio show. Click here to listen to the interview  in which Gail talks about her newest novel A Hundred Flowers (St. Martins Press, 2012) and her involvement with our Spirit of PaperTigers Books and Water program which provides donations of new multicultural children’s books for schools and libraries, while engaging with local communities to obtain access to clean water in areas of need throughout the world.  Together, these offer a vital source to promote literacy, education and development, while contributing to a fuller and healthier community. Gail’s interview begins at 90:10 and the portion addressing the Spirit of PaperTigers Project  starts at 101:00.



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6. Author Interview & Book Giveaway: Mercury in Retro Love by Janie Emaus

Welcome to Author Janie Emaus

I live in Southern California with my husband. When not busy with family and other work (the dark side of life) I like to exercise, read and read and read.
I'm a novice technocrat and of course love to write.
I have many past lives, which are revealed in my writing. Some good, some naughty. Always nice enough for Santa.


If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future?
Although I love all things sci fi, I'd love to travel back to the Covered Wagon Days. I'd love to experience traveling across the country, slowly, without all of today's technology.

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Mocha Almond Fudge from Baskin Robbins. 

If you could meet one person who has died who would you choose?
Dr. Seuss

Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
It's a fun, fast moving story about a love and astrology that will keep you entertained while learning a bit about the stars along the way. 

Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
I am currently working on a Young Adult Time Travel which takes place in 1968. 
What inspired you to want to become a writer?
I think I was born with the desire to write. Ever since I can remember, I've been telling stories. 
What's one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Keep writing. Believe in yourself. Don't give up. Listen to advice from your mentors, but don't lose your own voice.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
On any beach, so that I could fall asleep at night listening to the waves.
What is your favorite Quote?
"When there is no place left to fall, everything falls in place."
When you were little, what did you want to be when you "grew up"?
I've always wanted to be a writer. And when I finally "grow up" I hope I can say I've touched a few people with my stories.

What was your favorite children's book?
The Wind In the Willow

If you were a bird, which one would you be?
A hummingbird. 

If you were a super hero what would your kryptonite be?
The ability to time travel

What do you do in your free time?
Free time? What's that? If I had any, I'd catch up on sleep. 

If someone wrote a book about your life, what would the title be?
The fun, funky, big-haired optimist

Favorite music?
Anything by The Beatles

Chocolate or Vanilla? 

Regular or Diet? 

Pizza or Pasta? 

Sweet or Salty? 
Salty, most definitely.

Cats or Dog? 

Apples or Oranges? 

Text or Talk? 

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I've always wanted to be a song writer.

19 Comments on Author Interview & Book Giveaway: Mercury in Retro Love by Janie Emaus, last added: 8/6/2012
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7. My Garden is a LadyBug Resort


Photo by Suzanne Downing

We saw the most amazing beetle on a Potato Vine ...it was like finding hidden treasure!
It looked like a bronze or a golden ladybug...so beautiful it did not look real.  It took my breath away.
See Photo of a Milkweed Tortoise Beetle
My husband and I discovered it as we were examining leaves, puzzled as to why there were holes.   Although these tiny bugs are beautiful, they are pests.  The unusual climate had brought many unwanted bugs to my garden this year.

I ordered live Ladybugs to help control the unwanted guests.  ordered over the internet, through Amazon.
Yesterday, they came in the mail, 1500 live Ladybugs!
Tonight, after the sun went down and the day began to cool, we watered the plants.  Then, we let the LadyBugs go.      AMAZING!   I will never tire of Ladybugs.

When I was little, I almost killed a spider.   But, my dad stopped me... saying "these bugs have every right to be here, besides... what would the spider children think when their Papa spider did not come home from work? "  Horrified, I thought of how they would find his little hat and briefcase on the sidewalk...but sadly, he would never return home to them again."   ... to this day, I carefully scoop bugs and take them outside to be set free...guess I was always destined to draw anthropomorphic bugs.

These Ladybugs will awaken tomorrow morning to a new home, a lovely garden with waterdrops on leaves, a leaf shaped pool nearby...and a full buffet of various larva.  These Ladybugs will enjoy their new home.

1500 Ladybugs do go everywhere.  Carefully, we gently brushed the strays off our shirts and into the potted geraniums...Yes, my humble garden would now become a luxury resort and spa for LadyBugs.

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8. Comment on Giveaway: Win 5 Sizzling Hot YA Novels by Bianca Schulze

Congratulations, Evie Harris. You have won this set of books, too!! Enjoy!

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9. My Year Begins – Notes from Carolyn Brodie

And, so my year as ALSC President has begun with a month already past, can it really be August?

The weeks of July since ALA Annual Conference were very busy with an abundance of ALSC correspondence, reading post-conference committee reports, working on ALSC committee placements, creating charges for new task forces and for the new ALSC Website Advisory Committee and preparing for this week’s ALSC Community Forums.  (I did manage to squeeze in a few days for Arkansas family to visit here during our Ohio heat wave.  My southern relatives were very disappointed they experienced no relief from their summer heat during their days in Ohio!)

Our very busy and energetic annual conference was filled with a host of events that offered us the opportunities to connect through attending exemplary ALSC programs, meeting up on the exhibit floor and sharing dinner during our glamorous Newbery/Caldecott Banquet with the stellar speeches by Chris Raschka and Jack Gantos.  We made even more connections with each other by attending ALSC 101, participating in committee meetings, chatting at parties or just running into each other on an Anaheim street.

It was indeed a great pleasure to meet with many ALSC members in Anaheim as we work together this next year and focus on this year’s theme of “Connecting Communities” that will focus in part on the goal area of “Advocacy” from our ALSC Strategic Plan. We will work on connecting through our communication and information venues, through our advocacy initiatives and through our programming.

When I had the chance to meet members, many asked great questions about our association’s work and many also expressed an interest in how to get involved in ALSC through committee work.  It was rewarding and heartwarming to feel so much dedication from so many.

So, if you aren’t already serving on a committee — how do you volunteer your service to the ALSC community?   Here is some information on how the ALSC committee appointment process works:

First, where do you find out more about the work and the structure of ALSC committees?  Go to the ALSC Committees page to learn more about the possibilities.  The page includes a link to ALSC Committees:  A Guide to Participation that provides additional information.

The next step is to fill out a volunteer form which is available on the ALSC Website at www.ala.org/alsc.  You’ll find the form under the “members” tab.  Complete the form and make sure to note your background, note your experience in particular areas such as budget or programming. This extra information certainly helps in making a good committee match. Make sure to mark the appropriate box if you require a virtual assignment.  It is also really important to clearly indicate your preferential choices (as many as you can where you have interest and/or experience) on the form, not just by priority group, but also by committee.  If you’re willing to mark the box that says “I will serve wherever needed!” then that is great too!

Don’t hesitate to send your form in during any time of the year.  There are unexpected vacancies that occur all during the year and new appointments are made when this happens. For example, during this past month, I made several replacement  appointments.  And, if you haven’t been appointed and it has been a while, please send in another form.

A great time to volunteer is February through June for the ALSC process committee appointments.  Starr Latronica, our Vice-President/President-elect will make appointments to process committees (non-award committees) next spring. So certainly after the first of the year or after ALA Midwinter in Seattle, make sure to send your form for a p

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10. Video Sunday: “… and a lion who’s a god.”

Finding videos of the Voldemort vs. Mary Poppins nuttiness online was surprisingly difficult.  Finally I found a sort of recap of the Olympic 2012 opening ceremonies with reference to the rise of the great children’s literature villains (The Queen of Hearts, a Disney-esque Cruella de Ville, Captain Hook, and Voldemort) and their destruction at the hands of 30 Mary Poppins.  “A sweeping rambling narrative” is as accurate an interpretation of what happened as any I could come up with.  You’ll see the references at 1:00 in this video.

And since we’re already on the topic of Harry Potter (admittedly we are almost always on that topic) I sure hope you guys had a chance to see the first installment of Harry Potter and the Ten Years Later.  I thought it was rather well done.  Sort of makes me want to see the whole series now.

Thanks to Boing Boing for the link.

And now for a bloody effective book trailer.  If the point of such trailers is to cause the reader an immediate and almost impossible to resist urge to pick up the book and read it, Leave Your Sleep as edited by Natalie Merchant (yes, that Natalie Merchant) now has that hold on me.  It does not hurt that the songs featured here, paired with Barbara McClintock’s illustrations, are a delight.  A sheer, as they say, delight.

Resist it if you can.  And, might I say, this is one of the more logical uses of a celebrity getting involved in children’s literature that I’ve seen.  I was seated next to Ms. Merchant at a BEA lunch and to my delight she turned out to be a huge Barbara McClintock fan long before this book.  She said this, so I decided to quiz her by asking what she knew.  Without missing a beat she rattled off everything from The Gingerbread Man to Adele and Simon to the Aesop’s Fables Ms. McClintock did years ago.  Woman knows her stuff.

Okay, gear switch.  Obviously if I’m showing a Louis CK video then this is not going to be workplace friendly, though honestly aside from one off-white phrase this is downright pure for Louis.  When I read in a recent Entertainment Weekly article that he hated Clifford the Big Red Dog with a passion that eclipses the white hot sun I knew I had to find video proof.  Proof I found, and I love how he pairs Clifford with Narnia.  If Louis put out a CD that was just children’s book rants . . . okay, that’s a ridiculous dream.  But a dream I now have!

And now Louise Yates interviews Quentin Blake.  Because I can.

Thanks to Watch. Connect. Read. for the link!

And for the final off-topic video, awwwwww.  Baby goats.  Manic, remorseless baby goats.  Sadly adorable.

Thanks to mom for the link.

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Thanks for visiting my site. I appreciate your interest in my work. If you have questions regarding my books or stories, please feel free to send me a message. I enjoy hearing from you, and I’ll respond as soon as possible. 

Happy reading!


Latest News

Artie’s children’s book Living Green: A Turtle’s Quest for a Cleaner Planet is now available as a free video for kids through StoryCub. A shortlist finalist for the national 2012 Green Earth Book Award, Thurman the turtle is tired of seeing the land he loves cluttered with trash and decides to take action.

To watch the Living Green video and many other books on StoryCub.org, please click on the cover below. StoryCub videos are one of the most watched programs on Apple’s iTunes Kids & Family section.


Use of any of the content on this website without permission is prohibited by federal law

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12. Well, if Paulo Coelho says so ...

       In Folha de S.Paulo Rodrigo Levino profiles mega-bestselling international sensation Paulo Coelho and there, among the wisdom on offer, is, as the headline has it, the bold claim: Ulysses was harmful to literature, says Coelho.
       I don't know about you, but ... well, if Paulo Coelho says so, how can one even argue ?
       What he says, specifically, is that:

"Today writers want to impress other writers," he says. And then names the culprit: "One of the books that caused great harm was James Joyce's Ulysses, which is pure style. There is nothing there. Stripped down, Ulysses is a twit," he says.
       I must have missed something, back when I read Ulysses -- I thought it was a great read, and a pretty darn good story at that. But now, thanks to the wisdom of this Coelho fella, I know better. Sure, those generalizations -- lumping 'writers' into one big ugly pile, for example -- worry me a bit, but, after all, this guy is: "Internationally acclaimed, with 140 million books sold in 160 countries and translated into 73 languages", so surely he knows what he's talking about, and must be right about this (and everything).
       I guess that's the last we need to mention (much less read) Joyce, right ? Let's get back on track, away from style and ... twitdom ? twitiness ?
       Monday morning, I'm going to see if I can trade in my foolishly well-worn copy of Ulysses for a couple of these Coelho novels. They sound ... positively inspirational.

       (On the other hand, Coelho does seem to be onto something when he says he won't allow anything of his to be published after his death:
He fears his heirs will fight over copyrights, or, even worse, publish his works without authorization. "It happened to Nabokov. It is terrible."
       Anyone who bashes Dmitri Nabokov and estate-'handler' Andrew Wylie for what they did can't be all bad or wrong .....
       Now if we could only get Coelho to see the wisdom of not waiting until he isn't around any longer and actually get him to stop publishing his 'books' sooner .....)

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13. Age Book of the Year shortlists

       They've announced that: "The judges have selected 15 books for the shortlist for this year's Age Book of the Year awards" -- five each in the three categories, fiction, non, and poetry.

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14. Book culture in ... Zimbabwe

       In The Herald Fortious Nhambura has a Q & A with Musaemura Zimunya about Preserving reading culture the soul of ZIBF (ZIBF being the Zimbabwe International Book Fair, which just concluded).

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15. Self-publishing in ... India

       In The Hindu Rasana Atreya descibes My self-publishing journey, as she turned down a traditional publishing contract for her prize-winning manuscript, unwilling to sign away the electronic rights.
       Self-publishing is clearly not as advanced in India yet, at least in the print sector -- most of her success was via Amazon, and in electronic form, with print (on demand) copies too expensive for the Indian market -- but clearly the self-publishing hurdles are getting lower all the time even internationally.

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16. Profile: James Kelman

       In The Scotsman Susan Mansfield has a profile of James Kelman, author of Mo Thought She Was Quirky.
       One small problem: Kelman's book is titled Mo Said She Was Quirky ..... (But, hey, at least they're consistently wrong throughout the piece.)
       I'm looking forward to it, whatever you want to call it -- though it's only coming out next April (!) in the US, from Other Press -- pre-order your copy from Amazon.com -- or get your copy from Amazon.co.uk.

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17. Profile: Will Self

       In The Observer Elizabeth Day profiles Will Self: 'I don't write for readers'.
       His Umbrella was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize this year; it's coming to the US in January from Grove -- pre-order your copy from Amazon.com, or get your copy from Amazon.co.uk.

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18. Book Review: Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

Book: Beauty Queens
Author: Libba Bray
Published: 2011
Source: Local Library

When the plane holding all fifty contestants of the Miss Teen Dream beauty pageant goes down on a tropical island, the odds are most definitely stacked against the survivors. No water, no food, no shelter, and you just can't get a good facial anywhere.

But Miss Teen Dream contestants never say die (well, except for the ones who already did). After a few missteps, they're taking their survival into their own hands, creating shelter, catching food, and battling island wildlife, all while working on their tans and keeping their pageant skills sharp.

But there's more coming down the pike. The beauty queens are about to face off with reality-show pirates, the evil corporation, the megalomaniac dictator with an Elvis fetish, and the weapons system whose override is PowerPoint. You know. Just in case you thought this was going to make any sense at all.

I've been looking forward to this book on the strength of Bray's wild and powerful Printz award winner, Going Bovine, and I wasn't disappointed. It was the same mix of hilarious and heartfelt. She expertly juggles about six or seven viewpoint characters, all with their own individual character arcs. She often does this by pairing them up, playing two against each other to how their differences peel away the glossy pageant personae and find the messy, scaly, warty real girl underneath. To questions on ethnicity to sexuality to conformity to feminism--very often in the same character--the answer comes out the same: nobody fits a category, but they're all extraordinary just the way they're made, and their power comes when they own it.

If you're a plot person, don't read this. If you're into strict realism, don't read this. But if you love wicked satire with just enough silliness to keep you laughing, feminism with some teeth, stories about love and friendship and identity and courage . . .Well, this is the book for you.

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19. Voting for Art Reveal 5

The Leviathan series artbook, The Manual of Aeronautics, comes out on August 21. That’s just two and a half weeks from now, so it’s probably time for more art revealings.

Here are the previous art reveals, in case you missed them:
The Bridge of the Leviathan!
The Cyklop Stormwalker!
Clanker uniforms!
Flechette bat!

Shall we vote on this? We shall.

Would you rather see . . .

1) A portrait of Dr. Barlow? (with bonus Tazza!)

2) A rigger’s uniform? (with various specialist/rank patches)

3) Or the message lizard? (carried over from round 4)

And all of it in glorious color!

Please vote by number. As always, use this comment thread to wrangle, browbeat, and bludgeon your co-commenters into agreement. They like it when you do that.

Let the voting begin.

You can pre-order the Manual from the usual online joints: Powell’s, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, or IndieBound. It will land at your local bricks-and-mortar store on Tuesday, August 21.

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20. One Fan’s Ecstasy: Fantastic Four Annual #33!


Last Thursday, during my lunch break, I headed over to the rebooted Forbidden Planet.  DC had reprinted four Wonder Woman stories from “Adventures in the DCU” as “DC COMICS PRESENTS: WONDER WOMAN ADVENTURES #1“.  Sure, I would get a copy as part of my monthly box of comp copies, but I couldn’t wait to read it, and I’ll pass on the extra issue to my super-smart niece in Colorado.

ff annual33 197x300 One Fans Ecstasy: Fantastic Four Annual #33!So first I checked the back wall of recent releases, and scanned every title.  That’s when I discovered something unexpected, and, ultimately, amazing and fantastic:

Now, Fantastic Four was the first series I followed after getting hooked on Spider-Man.  I knew that Marvel usually did a decent job with Fantastic Four annuals, presenting fun, done-in-one stories!  So I picked it up, and flipped it open.  Here’s why I bought it, and why I recommend it to you:

  1. It’s drawn, and WRITTEN, by Alan Davis, so you know the art and story are gonna be good!
  2. It’s Ben and Johnny, housesitting the Baxter Building (or whatever it’s called now) while Reed and Sue go on vacation.  (If that were the only story, I’d still read it!)
  3. It features Davis’ ClanDestine.  Don’t know who they are?  Short form: a human and a genie fall in love and sire a family of paranormal humans who live separate from the rest of the Marvel Universe (although they have encountered the X-Men, Spider-Man, and the Silver Surfer on occasion.)
  4. It’s got time travel, famous people, and Doctor Strange!
  5. And…something I didn’t discover until I turned to the last page, where the digital code is found: it’s the first of THREE Alan Davis annuals!  The story continues in Daredevil, and finishes in Wolverine!  (Hmm… it looks like the variant covers form a complete image.  Might there be a poster in the future?)

ff annual33 variant 197x300 One Fans Ecstasy: Fantastic Four Annual #33!Daredevil Annual Vol 3 1 Alan Davis Variant 197x300 One Fans Ecstasy: Fantastic Four Annual #33!

3 Comments on One Fan’s Ecstasy: Fantastic Four Annual #33!, last added: 8/7/2012
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21. Haven't I seen you someplace before? Dueling slanting cartoony city streets from above

Not true dueling covers, but a similar vibe:


And thanks to to Jennifer Hubbard:


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22. Postage Stamp Pendant - Edward Lear

from   bookshelvesofdoom 

UK 32p Edward Lear stamp encased in glass. This stamp features an entry from his alphabet book, and is part of the 1988 Edward Lear set. The glass pieces are wrapped with foil and soldered (with lead-free solder), then a pendant bail is attached with epoxy. 

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23. Winner - UNDER THE NEVER SKY by Veronica Rossi

Thank you to all who entered!

The winner of

UNDER THE NEVER SKY by Veronica Rossi (HarperCollins, January 3, 2012)


Bridget Howard!


And don't forget I'm also giving away

ANASTASIA FOREVER by Joy Preble (Sourcebooks, August 7, 2012)

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24. New Logos for 2012

Get 'em while they're hot! Oh, I know it's a little early and the Cybils process isn't going to really get going until next month, but you know you want to be an early bird. Hint, hint, ahem.

You can spread the word with a sidebar-friendly button, a slightly larger graphic, or a big ol' full-sized attention-grabbing pic. Collect them all! Just right-click and Save As, and you're set.

CybilsLogo2012-Web-Button CybilsLogo2012-Web-Small


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25. Another Adventure With Those Incorrigible Children

I am definitely a fan of Maryrose Wood's books,  The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place. The serial plays off a number of my favorite types of childhood reading. My favorite book in the series is the second, which I never blogged about, though I've just finished Book 3, The Unseen Guest. These are very sophisticated books with historical and literary references that will be as entertaining for readers who get them as pop culture references are for those who stay on top of that.

Notice I called The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place a serial. Each book has a separate thing going for it--Book 1 introduced the situation, Book 2 took the wolfie children and their intrepid governess to London, and Book 3 deals with the Victorian fascination with the dead and contacting them. But there definitely is an overall story we're dealing with. Who are the three Incorrigible children? Were they brought up by wolves? If so, what kind of wolves would take in children? Did a human help them out in the wild? If so, who was it? What's with Lord Fredrick who took them in and pays for Miss Penelope Lumley to care for them? What happen to Miss Penelope Lumley's parents?

I could go on and on.

These books illustrate a frustration with even the best serials--readers have to wait for the next installment and by the time it comes, how much can they recall of earlier books? The best way to read a serial, I suspect, is after the entire story is done. Years from now, I see some young Gailish person going to the library to pick up another Incorrigible book. Or perhaps s/he will wait for the e-book to become available for download to an e-reader.

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