What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in
    from   

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Posts

(from the Reviews category)

Recent Comments

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Reviews Category Blogs

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
<<May 2015>>
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
     0102
03040506070809
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31      
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts from the Reviews category, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 26 - 50 of 148,214
26. Summer Reading Self-Care

Summer reading is upon us. For many librarians, registration has already begun.

Summer reading is hard, y'all. It's fun, but it's stressful and it tests us. So I think the thing to do is to decide beforehand that we're going to take care of ourselves. Once we're in it, it's too easy to get carried away. Here's a few quick tips:

1) Keep an eye on your overtime. At my last branch, all of my family programs were in the evening. It was just too easy to come in at the regular time and work all the way to close. I don't care how young you are, your body cannot handle multiple 12-hour workdays. You will burn out early on and your summer will be miserable.

2) Ask for help. Do you have a staff? Delegate. If you don't, that gets trickier. You might have to ask your manager or other non-YS library staff for help. In a perfect world, they would be thrilled to help, but we all know that's not the case. But summer reading is NOT a one-man operation. Don't try to do it on your own.

3) Set aside you time. Make sure you block off a specific time each week for something for you to do. Seriously. Put it in your phone, planner, or desk calendar. Do you love to read? Grab a book and hit your favorite shady spot. Are you a gamer? Grab that controller because you deserve it. Your brain needs these outlets.

4) Consider taking vacation time in the fall. When I ran a department that was in charge of running summer reading for preschool, K-6, and teens, by the end of the summer, I was totally useless. I used to save up my vacation all year and take two weeks off in August. I know this isn't feasible for everyone, but think about taking at least a long weekend after your programs are over. You deserve it.

5) Find some support. Maybe you have an excellent support system, like coworkers at a large library system or other librarians in your area to help you get through, but if not, consider your online sources. Twitter has an active library community. Check out the hashtags #librarylife or the humorous #librarianproblems. Storytime Underground and Teen Services Underground both have active Facebook communities that encourage discussion. These resources are so valuable, both for everyday use and to remember that you're not alone.

Happy Summer Reading, Librarians! You can do it.

*

Our guest blogger from ALSC today is Ally Watkins (@aswatki1). Ally is a Library Consultant at the Mississippi Library Commission.

======

For more information on summer reading check out the Summer Reading wiki entry and the Summer Reading ning.

Add a Comment
27. Cynsational News, Giveaways & Summer Hiatus

By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

Thanks so much for being a Cynsational reader! 

I appreciate your enthusiasm for and interest in the world of books for kids and teens.

Breaking news: Effective immediately, Cynsations is going on summer hiatus until September. 

In the meantime, you can keep up with children's-YA books news on my author facebook page and @CynLeitichSmith on Twitter.

See y'all in the fall!

More News  

Recommended on the We are the People List
We're the People Summer Reading List of 2015 from Facebook. Peek: "Are you looking for books to add to your summer reading list? Ones written or illustrated by Native Americans or people of color? Ones that include characters that are Native? People of color? Disabilities? LGBTQ? Take a look at these!" Note: Download a PDF (list of titles; annotated list) to take with you to the store of library.  See more information about the list from Debbie Reese at American Indians in Children's Literature.

Romanticizing Mental Illness by L. Lee Butler, S. Jae-Jones and Alex Townsend from Disability in Kidlit. Peek: "Ideally there would be plenty of stories within and outside of the perspectives of mental illness. Because lots of outsiders don’t really relate until they hear a story from the outside perspective."

Mary E. Cronin's Workshop on Gay (LGBT) & Questioning Characters in Middle Grade from Lee Wind at I'm Here. I'm Queer. What the Hell Do I Read? Peek: "There may be GLBT people in the character’s family, or they may have no role models or reference points at all. These factors will have a huge impact on a character’s trajectory."

The Mystery of the Hardy Boys and the Invisible Authors by Daniel A. Gross from The Atlantic. Peek: "If writing seems like a lonely profession, try ghostwriting children's books."

How to Secure a Traditional Book Deal by Self-Publishing by Jane Friedman from Writer Unboxed. Peek: "By far, the No. 1 consulting request I receive is the author who has self-published and wants to switch to traditional publishing. Usually it’s because they’re disappointed with their sales or exposure; other times, that was their plan all along."

What Makes a Picture Book a Mega Hit? by Elizabeth Bird from School Library Journal. Peek: "With that in mind, today I’m going to talk about some of the top picture book blockbusters to come out in the last ten years. Please note that I’m avoiding picture books with TV or other media tie-ins. These are the folks who got where they are on their own merits."

Interview: Jackie Morse Kessler on the Riders of the Apocalypse Series by Katherine Locke and Alex Townsend from Disability in Kid Lit. Peek: "I’m a former bulimic, and I still have self-image issues. The protagonist Lisabeth is inspired by someone I knew when I was younger; she’d been a very close friend, and she was the one who introduced me to bulimia." Note: This series is highly recommended.

The Connection Between Emotional Wounds and Basic Needs by Becca Puglisi from Writers Helping Writers. Peek: "...she still feels the pain associated with the loss of her esteem and will subconsciously take steps to meet that need or make sure that it isn’t threatened again. Maybe she’ll throw herself into education, sports, or the arts as a means of gaining recognition for herself, since she feels unable to compete physically."

Emotional Wounds Thesaurus: A Parent's Abandonment by Becca Puglisi from Writers Helping Writers. Peek: "This negative experience from the past is so intense that a character will go to great lengths to avoid experiencing that kind of pain and negative emotion again. As a result, certain behaviors, beliefs, and character traits will emerge."

One Tweet Reminds Us Why Judy Blume Was the Sexual Revolutionary We Needed by Kate Hakala from Connections.Mic. Peek: "The children and teens of Blume's books didn't only normalize sexuality for so many young kids, they illuminated the more embarrassing, secret parts of sex — the blood, the touching — that many readers were too afraid to bring up in school or to their parents."

Industry Q&A with Charlesbridge Editor Alyssa Mito Pusey from CBC Diversity. Peek: "When I was recently looking up Asian and Asian American biographies, I was shocked all over again at how little there is out there—Lee & Low seems to be the only publisher consistently putting out these books."

Children's Book Council to Receive BookExpo America's Industry Ambassador Award by Yolanda Scott from CBC Diversity. Peek: "While this is the first year that the award is being bestowed on an organization in place of an individual, BEA show organizers note that the Children’s Book Council’s work is both personal and special for its dedication to fostering literacy, diversity and education, making it eminently qualified to receive the award."

Case Cracked: The Process of Editing Mystery Novels by Stacy Whitman from Lee & Low. Peek: "...we discussed how the inciting incident—the moment that gets Claire to veer her course to investigating whether her father and her stepdad ever knew each other—might be complicated and how those complications would have a ripple effect that would improve multiple other plot points, and increase the pacing." See also: Wouldn’t You Like to Know . . . Valynne E. Maetani by Stacey Hayman from VOYA.

The Godzilla Effect: How Climaxes, Twists, and Turning Points Work (and How They Don’t) by Harrison Demchick from Project Mayhem. Peek: "The climax, then, is the inevitable result—eventually, the effect—of that incident two hundred or three hundred or however many pages ago. It needs to be an organic development of the story."

Six Tips from Six Years of School Visits by Chris Barton from Bartography. Peek: "If you’ve got multiple books, don’t assume that your host wants you to focus on your newest one. Your host might not know much about it, and in fact may have led their students to expect something else."

Breaking Barriers: Alvina Ling, Editor-in-Chief of Little, Brown Books for Young Readers from TaiwaneseAmerican.org. Peek: "...ideally we have a nice balance between books that may have award potential, and books that are more commercial and have bestseller potential (although books that are both are even more ideal!). We also don’t want to have all fantasy books or all historical fiction, for example, so I help guide our acquisitions process and identify needs and gaps to our editors to keep in mind as they are reading submissions and acquiring."

Cynsational Awards

2015 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Winners from School Library Journal. Peek:

"The Farmer and the Clown by Marla Frazee (Simon & Schuster) has won the 2015 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award for best picture book, while Katherine Rundell’s Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms (Simon & Schuster) took best fiction title and Candace Fleming’s The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion and the Fall of Russia (Schwartz & Wade) was named best nonfiction book." See honor books and more information.

2015 South Asian Book Awards:

See honor books and more information.

Cynsational Giveaways
The winner of a set of signed books by Claire Legrand was Christina in Kentucky.

See also a giveaway of an author- and illustrator-signed copy of The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch by Chris Barton, illustrated by Don Tate (Eerdmans, 2015) from Fat Girl Reading.

This Week at Cynsations


More Personally

My Memorial Day view of Highway One; hang in there, Texas & Oklahoma!
At "Pretty in Pink" with authors Cory Putnam Oakes, P.J. Hoover & Mari Mancusi at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz.
Happy Summer! Congratulations to spring 2015 graduates!

As all y'all can tell from my events listed below, I'm going to be coming and going for the next few months. I hope to see many of you on the road or here in Austin, and online you can catch up with me at my author facebook page and @CynLeitichSmith on Twitter.

So embrace the summer. Read, write, illustrate, champion books for young readers, and with each new day, remember to be the heroes of your own life stories.

Thanks again for being Cynsational readers! 

Link of the Week: How Insane Amount of Rain in Texas Could Turn Rhode Island Into a Lake by Christopher Ingraham from The Washington Post.

Central Texans! Summer Road Trip Release Party: Join Margo Rabb (Kissing in America) and Liz Garton Scanlon (Great Good Summer) at 2 p.m. May 30 at BookPeople in Austin.

Personal Links

Now Available!

Cynsational Events

Join Cynthia at 11 a.m. May 30 in conjunction with the YA Book Club at Cedar Park Public Library in Cedar Park, Texas.

Cynthia will serve as the master class faculty member from June 19 to June 21 at the VCFA Alumni Mini-Residency in Montpelier, Vermont.

Cynthia will speak from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. June 28 on an Association of Library Service to Children (ALSC) program--"We Need Diverse Books: How to Move from Talk to Action Panel"--at the 2015 Annual Conference of the American Library Association in San Francisco.
Learn more!
Cynthia will teach on the faculty of the MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts from July 8 to July 19.

Join Cynthia from July 30 to Aug. 2 at GeekyCon in Orlando, Florida. See more information.

Cynthia Leitich Smith will lead a YA Writing Retreat for A Room of Her Own Foundation from Aug. 10 to Aug. 16 at Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu, New Mexico.

Cynthia will lead a breakout session on "Diversity in Children's and YA Literature" Aug. 22 at East Texas Book Fest at the Harvey Hall Convention Center in Tyler, Texas.

Cynthia will speak Sept. 19 at the Mansfield, Texas Book Festival.

Cynthia will speak Sept. 29 at Richardson Public Library in Richardson, Texas.

Add a Comment
28. Classic Readalong Discussion: Hatchet

In the first chapter of Hatchet by Gary Paulsen, 13-year-old Brian is the only passenger in a single engine plane when the pilot has a heart attack and dies. 7000 feet above the wilderness and wildly off course, he eventually crashes into a lake..and must find a way to survive. On his own. Without food or shelter. Believe it or not, the stakes only get higher from there. Let’s begin! (Beware spoilers, as usual.) Wendy: I’m a big fan of survival and naturalistic stories, having loved Sign of the Beaver and The Yearling and Where the Red Fern Grows as a kid. But somehow this one passed me by, so I’m glad Kim suggested it for our classics series. Kim: This was one of the few offerings in my 5th grade classroom’s “library” that actually interested me, and holy hell did little Kim devour it. I like survival fiction because of... Read more »

The post Classic Readalong Discussion: Hatchet appeared first on The Midnight Garden.

Add a Comment
29. I Think We ALL Know Which One I Am.....


Add a Comment
30. Sun Trap? Oh, It WAS Supposed To Be A Comedy? Now Let Me Tell You...


 


Back in the late 1980s-1990s, I wrote scripts and series proposals for TV.  Back then you had BBC, ITV (before de-regulation did everything all the top boys were saying it would not), Channel 4 and later Chennal 5 (the station hardly anyone used to be able to watch thanks to total screw up technical issues).

My most famous failure, that actually got a mention by a BBC TV producer whose name I cannot recall in some Guardian article, was A Cabinet Of Curiosities which was written at the same time as the horror-sci-fi The Diaries Of Fred Purvey -the BBC man told me "We'll go with your idea for the two main characters!" which would have been Roy Hudd as Fred Purvey and June Whitfield as "Mystic Marge".

I wrote all the scripts for each series (seven for each), put together creature and production illustrations and handed them in -the offer of the BBC footing the huge photocopying bill seemed a good one (all the scripts were typed, kids -no computers.....who is that keeps fainting at the back??).

Nothing.  Then more nothing.  So a couple of calls and eventually I hear "Oh. Didn't anyone contact you? There's this new TV series from the US -it's already made so no production costs."  And my kill fee? Ever tried to get money out of the BBC?  Bureaucracy and "we have no idea what you are talking about" followed by "Who was the producer?  Oh, he's left. We can't enter into discussion on this."

So I cursed this stupid, no name, crap US TV show and prayed for it to be a massive flop.

It was called "The X-Files" -no, I never heard of it either.

Anyway, I continued with my quiz/challenge show projects, documentaries and even comedy.  Yes. I wrote comedy.  Sad Lad's Pad was described by someone at the BBC as "a very surrealistic version of Bottom but with three characters rather than two."  I guess he must have read the script!  

I think the first episode was titled "Barbara Windsor" and if memory serves me right the second involved the Sad Lads ending up in a Moroccan style British prison.  Hookahs, fez's the works.

The guy in charge loved it. "I'm glad you came to us rather than radio first!"  I never even thought of radio. Anyhow, the six scripts (I think I only have the rough first two episode scripts now) were read and the producer loved them.  And then came the inevitable silence.  Then a letter from a new producer stating "sadly these scripts are not as funny as you seem to think they are" -which was feckin' weird.  I never laid any claims and I had never said in writing or over the phone that my scripts were great because I never would. Also, WTF was this new man?

A quick call and I found out that the old producer had left for a higher paid job at an independent company.  The assistant, who I had talked to a great deal before then told me that it was "traditional" for a new producer to throw out any ideas approved by a predecessor -if it bombed HE got the blame.  If it was a success then the previous man got the credit for commissioning the series.  So in the bin it went.

I asked about what for the BBC was a very -very- rude letter?  "Oh, he's straight out of university and never worked in TV before so he's rather rude to the point of insulting even established scripters."  I wish I remembered his name (it's in a file) because one day.....

Let me tell you, this approving, going through discussing, sorting out cast or presenters and producers then leaving and everything being dumped covers all BBC departments including Wildlife -three times I was asked by the BBC Wildlife unit in Bristol (over the phone once and twice in person) "Do you know where that piece of footage is?"  To which I responded: "It's BBC footage.  Wildlife footage.  Surely you know?"  but it seems "the BBC is a big place as is the wildlife unit and those pieces of footage could be anywhere here!"

Now, the BBC seems to have lost its reputation for TV comedy.   "Mr Khan" appears to be a 1970s, not very good ITV comedy...for children.  Bottom and  The Mighty Boosh seem to have been the final stabs at comedy before obscenity filled 25 minute crap took over.  Not funny but unless there is an obscenity every other word it cannot be funny, right?  Oddly, I did actually enjoy Uncle for some reason.

But the other night I watched the latest late night comedy, Sun Trap.  Bradley Walsh has proven himself a good actor and funny so I thought "why not?"  I sat there, my sister also watching the TV, not a single laugh.

WHY was this on at 22:45hrs?  Kayvan Novak from this performance, should never work again. Bradley Walsh was only really a cameo but this really dented his reputation.  Novak had a Scottish (??) accent that covered being a gay Frenchman(?), a.....no.  Basically it covered every accent you need. If ever a show needed canned laughter it was this.  It had no life.  No humour and it, again, seemed to be a failed CITV (Childrens ITV) programme from the 1980s.

I may be a little hard on Novak because he had a senseless -and I DO mean senseless- script that had no gags or humour.  The characters were sheets of blank paper.  

I got quite angry.  I thought my age.  Then I got angrier as I thought through it that night.  My scripts back in the early 1990s were  "sadly these scripts are not as funny as you seem to think they are" but in 2015 the scripts for Sun Trap were funny? 

Kids, look for independent companies or produce your own shows or films or audio podcasts -anything but go through what many, many others have over the years. Learn.  You will always get ripped off, messed about, insulted and hardly ever paid!

Below: Bradley Walsh: "We took the money. Sorry."
 

Add a Comment
31. Castle Hangnail by Ursula Vernon, 372 pp, RL 4

Castle Hangnail is the special treat that we get from Ursula Vernon that comes between the ending of her fantastic  Dragonbreath series and the start of her eagerly anticipated new series, Hamster Princess, featuring Harriet, a an extraordinary princess who excels at checkers and fractions, despite the curse that a wicked fairy god mouse cast, leaving her looking toward a Sleeping

0 Comments on Castle Hangnail by Ursula Vernon, 372 pp, RL 4 as of 5/29/2015 5:41:00 AM
Add a Comment
32. Poetry Friday with a review of The Maine Coon’s Haiku and other poems for cat lovers

The Maine Coon’s Haiku and other poems for cat lovers
I have had the privilege to share my life with many wonderful cats. Most of them have been mixed breeds of some kind, and all of them have been rescues. The only single breed cats I have had are Siamese, which are often slightly neurotic but always loving and interesting. Their beauty and singular ways have charmed people all over the world ever since the breed became available outside of Thailand, which is where they were first selectively bred.

Today's poetry picture book looks at a few of the world's most popular cat breeds. The haiku on the pages beautifully capture the quixotic and fascinating personalities of these wonderful animals.

The Maine Coon’s Haiku and other poems for cat lovers
Michael J. Rosen
Illustrated by Lee White
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 7 and up
Candlewick Press, 2015, 978-0-7636-6492-3
Poets have been writing odes to cats for centuries; poems of many forms have danced off their pens and pencils as they have tried to understand the enigmatic, secretive, independent, and yet loving nature of one of man’s most beloved pets.
   In this wonderful book Michael J. Rosen explores the lives of cats, capturing those special moments that delight, entrance and puzzle their owners. Each carefully crafted haiku is about a different cat breed, and each poem presents readers with a moment in time, a pause, when they can revel in three lines of words that capture an image, a moment, to perfection.
   We begin with a Maine Coon which is indoors “crouched before the couch.” It is there because it has heard a sound that has its full and undivided attention. The cat has heard a mouse moving around.
   The Ragdoll that we meet next is not in the mood for doing much at all at the moment. It lies, with its fluffy tail curled around it, “beneath the ivy.” The cat was busy not long ago though, for we can see that it “halved the blameless hearts,” tearing many of the plant’s glossy leaves to pieces.
   Later, on the street, we meet a British Shorthair, an elegant grey feline who has planted “mud daisies / along the polished hillside” of some cars. There they are, little muddy paw prints weaving their way across hoods, roofs, and trunks.
   Back indoors an Abyssinian has decided that the book on your lap is the only place it wants to be. You may want, perhaps even need, to turn the page, but the cat does not “care what happens next / now’s the only page,” which probably means that it may be a while before the next pages get read.
   In addition to the wonderful poems, the author provides readers with further information about the twenty breeds of cats mentioned in the book. Reader swill find out, among other things, that Siamese cats were entrusted with taking care of their royal mistress’s rings. The rings would be placed on the cat’s tails for safe keeping. Norwegian Forest cats have been living in Norway’s forests since the time of the Vikings. Unlike many cats, these especially thick-coated animals can climb down a tree using their claws. Most cats who climb trees jump down in stages or get stuck!
   Throughout the book the wonderful poems are accompanied by Lee White’s expressive artwork.


0 Comments on Poetry Friday with a review of The Maine Coon’s Haiku and other poems for cat lovers as of 5/29/2015 11:51:00 AM
Add a Comment
33. Silicon Hearts -A Reminder.

Everyone Should Have A Silicon Heart...


I'm sure people here remember Kat Nicholson?  She was interviewed on CBO as one of the artists on Classical Comics A Mid Summer Night's Dream:
http://hoopercomicart.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/classical-comics-nicholson-cardys.html 

No idea where the interview went.  Hmm.

Anyway, I do not promote kick-starter projects.  I can, however, point you in the direction of some nice art and what might be a very good project to support by passing the word around.



The project Face Book page (it's on the blog roll) has some interesting art so why not check it out?

https://www.facebook.com/SiliconHeart/photos/a.253108708198872.1073741828.159826847527059/432192520290489/?type=1&permPage=1

 

Add a Comment
34. Talking About Unlikely Mentors with Lisa Eickholdt + a Book Giveaway

Using students’ writing as mentor texts builds kids’ self-esteem and lifts the level of writing of every other student in the room.

Add a Comment
35. Supergirl - First Look

"Why haven't you posted or mentioned Supergirl?"  Well, I assumed everyone had seen this by now -am I wrong?



Add a Comment
36. What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,Plus What I’ve Done at BookPage,Featuring Sara O’Leary and Julie Morstad


Julie Morstad’s early Sadie sketches
(Click to enlarge)


 


“Sadie has had adventures in Wonderland.”
– A final spread from Sara O’Leary’s
This Is Sadie,
illustrated by Julie Morstad

(Click to enlarge)


 

This morning over at Kirkus, I’ve got three new picture books that are pretty much for the birds. You can thank me later for this exceedingly punny moment. That link is here.

* * *

Over at BookPage, I’ve got a review of Sara O’Leary’s This Is Sadie (Tundra, May 2015), illustrated by Julie Morstad. That review is here. Today, I follow up that review with a chat with Sara, and Julie shares some early sketches and final art from the book.

Enjoy!

p.s. Speaking of Morstad, I keep hearing great things about Laurel Snyder’s Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova, illustrated by Julie and coming in August from Chronicle Books. I’m looking forward to seeing that one.



 

Jules: What sparked this story for you?

Sara: This is Sadie started with the idea of this little girl in her room. A lot of stuff from the first draft is gone now, but one of the things I recall was thinking about this game I used to play when I was small where I would lie on the floor and stare at the ceiling until suddenly it seemed like I was looking at the floor and lying on the ceiling. That sense of being able to wilfully disbelieve the laws of physics is so attractive in some ways!

 


“Sadie sails all the way round her room, and back again. And it still isn’t even time for breakfast. Sadie has learned to be quiet in the mornings
because old people need a lot of sleep.”

(Click to enlarge)


 

I was intrigued by that whole imaginative world of childhood, and I think there’s a slightly nostalgic tone to the book, but I really don’t believe that world is entirely lost.

There’s a great book called How To Do Nothing With Nobody All Alone By Yourself, and for me that’s one of the all-time great titles. It encapsulates childhood for me. Sadie is very much a child who can be perfectly all alone by herself, because she has a rich inner life. And the fact that her inner life has been fed by books is, of course, autobiographical.

Jules: I know you’ve worked with Julie previously on other books. What draws you to her artwork?

Sara: It was fantastic getting the opportunity to do a new book with Julie. There seems to be some way in which she and I occupy the same imaginative territory. A lot of her art, outside of picture books, is marvelously dark and strange, and I think that gives a strong undercurrent to her work that might be glibly termed merely whimsical otherwise. When we talk about other people’s books, we love and loathe many of the same things, which I think is a sign that our sensibilities match up quite well.



Jules: What was it like to see her artwork for the first time for Sadie?

Sara: I cried the first time I saw Julie’s art for Sadie, but then I think I have with each of our books. I didn’t see the art all at once this time. And the first spread I saw was the one where Sadie visits the world of fairy tales. And there she is—on her white steed, her quiver full of arrows—and somehow she is breaking that fourth wall and looking straight out at the viewer, daring them to dispute that she can play the hero. I think it’s a profoundly powerful image.

 


Early rough of the book’s first spread
(Click to enlarge)


 

Jules: Yes! That’s my favorite spread in the book, hands down. I don’t have it here to share today, but that just means people will have to find a copy of the book and see for themselves.

Have you shared the story with children yet? What have been the responses?



 


Rough of the mermaid spread
(Click to enlarge)


 

Sara: I haven’t read this story with a child yet, but a dear friend read the book to her son and then called to tell me he loved it. Then the following night, she called to tell me that when Emil went to pick his bed-time story from his stack of books, he chose This is Sadie over everything else, including his beloved collection of Oliver Jeffers’s books. “I want the O’Leary,” he said. So, I beat out Oliver Jeffers! (Just don’t tell him, because I don’t want to make him cry. We love his books.)

Also, people have been sending me pics of their little people with a copy of This is Sadie, and this is now pretty much my favourite thing. I may need to do a gallery wall of them or something.

 


Another rough
(Click to enlarge)


 

Jules: What’s next for you?

Sara: I have a couple of projects coming out in the next year. One is a baby book series with Owl Books to be illustrated by Karen Klassen, and it’s going to be utterly gorgeous. Karen did an edition of Breakfast at Tiffany’s with The Folio Society that is stunning. She is new to picture books but was such an interesting choice, because after all, why shouldn’t baby books be beautiful?

 


Karen Klassen’s cover art for Breakfast at Tiffany’s


 

A Family is a Family is a Family is pretty much my way of walking the walk of all my talk about the need for diverse representations in picture books. The book is with Groundwood Books and will be illustrated by the fabulous Qin Leng.

I’m also working on a few more picture book manuscripts, along with a middle-grade novel that I am writing with my younger son. And finally, I’m looking at turning This is Sadie into a children’s television series in which Sadie takes a role in various children’s classics. A bit like those great old episodes of Gumby!

Jules: Ooh, I really like Qin Leng’s artwork. I posted some here at 7-Imp last September (from Chieri Uegaki’s Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin). And Robert Heidbreder’s Song for a Summer Night: A Lullaby, released by Groundwood this month, is beautiful:

 



 

Thanks for visiting, Sara. Anything else you want to add?

Sara: This is my fourth picture book, but somehow this year marks a change for me in that I am really thinking of myself as a picture writer for the first time. This is partly a factor of having taught a workshop in writing for children for a few years and thinking very hard about how picture books work and what exactly they can do.

The real gift for me in all of this has been realising how wonderful picture book people are. I’m working with these fabulous women now: Tara Walker at Tundra/Penguin Random House; Karen Boersma at Owl Books; and Sheila Barry at Groundwood Books. Really, I’d go ahead and write the books I’m doing with them just for the sake of the conversations we get to have. Please don’t tell them that, though.

* * * * * * *

Spreads above excerpted from This is Sadie by Sara O’Leary, illustrated by Julie Morstad. Text copyright © 2015 by Sara O’Leary. Illustrations copyright © 2015 by Julie Morstad. Published by Tundra Books, a division of Random House of Canada Ltd., a Penguin Random House Company. Spreads reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

Early roughs/sketches are used by permission of Julie Morstad.

0 Comments on What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,Plus What I’ve Done at BookPage,Featuring Sara O’Leary and Julie Morstad as of 5/29/2015 10:40:00 PM
Add a Comment
37. Cinebook the 9th Art: Kenya 3 - Aberrations


 



 Kenya 3 - Aberrations
Authors: LEO & Rodolphe
Age: 15 years and up
Size: 18.4 x 25.7 cm
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
ISBN: 9781849182492
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

Publication: April 2015


After reporting to London, Kathy Austin returns to Kenya to continue her investigation. In the palace of Count Di Broglie, the young English woman finally meets the last survivors of the Remington expedition, but they lack material proof to support their stories. Kathy is ordered to obtain information on Irmanius, a rather inquisitive individual who’s been snooping around the country. Who is he working for? The Americans, the Russians… or some considerably more foreign power?

This gets really WEIRD.  Aliens of various types, UFOs and Sea serpent along with various odd Government sorts.  Almost like my life from 1977-2007 but no phrases such as "You did sign the Official Secrets Act"  -I'm sure CBOs two viewers in Antarctica will appreciate that.

Anyway, this series is developing well and the "coming of the saucers" sequence is a nice touch.  I don't think this series could be anything but good.  If you are into Forteana, UFOs or the weird give this a try.  Like very good comics -give this a try!
 

Add a Comment
38. What Do Artists Do All Day - Frank Quitely


A mix here. I like some of Quitely's work but it often leaves me cold -too clean and antisceptic. But he is very popular and I still likr reading his Earth 3.

Add a Comment
39. Cinebook The 9th Art: The Survivors - Episode 2

 
Authors: LEO
Age: 15 years and up
Size: 18.4 x 25.7 cm
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
Paperback

ISBN: 9781849182430
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

Publication: March 2015


The small group of marooned humans, minus a few individuals who left after a difference of opinions, survived one group of aliens, received help from a second, and is now travelling towards what appears to be a town. But their adoptive planet is a truly peculiar place with many surprises in store: a wild and unknown nature, inhabitants with unpredictable attitudes and morals ... and other, even stranger phenomena well beyond their comprehension!

This "The Wolds Of Aldebaran" story is almost a "How The West Was Won" but set in space.  Leo has produced some great characters and art -some very imaginative art!- and never ceases to amaze.

In this story we see humans getting involved in "survival" -so you can guess they've taken their knack of using weapons (even if small weapons) to make a point into space.  I think Leo's opinion seems to fall on the side of "There is no reason why aliens are not going to be like us so we need to be careful" -as opposed to "They'll be our space Brothers and Sisters".

If you've not read at a copy of a book in this series then you really should.  Initially I was a little cold but sitting down and reading and looking at the art made me a fan.  Don't ask "why?" because I try never to question it these days!

 


Add a Comment
40. Cinebook The 9th Art: Thorgal 15- Arachnea

 


Thorgal 15- Arachnea
Authors: Rosinski & Van Hamme
Age: 15 years and up
Size: 18.4 x 25.7 cm
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
ISBN: 9781849182478
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

Publication: April 2015

Thorgal, his family and their friends Darek and Lehla have left their island to sail south and look for a safer place to live. After a storm scatters them, Thorgal and WolfCub’s boat flounders on reefs at the foot of a strange, mist-covered cliff. One perilous climb later, the little girl is trapped by a mysterious, invisible force, and her father, after going for help, discovers a very curious city cut off from the world...

I usually like to spend some time when it comes to Thorgal to discuss things -we've moved from the sci fi origins to Meso America...it has been a very exciting read.  Now we have more fantasy, with a tinge of horror? Yes, my favourites (but not it seems 99% of humanity's) -spiders.  Bless 'em.

Great art, great colour work by Graza and a nice twisting tale with a little "ahhhhh" toward the end. And at album number 15 this has turned around completely the impression I had of Thorgal from what I had read in German.  I made the assumption it was "just another barbarian" series. It certainly is not. Writer and artist both deliver some of their best work. 

No wonder Thorgal is a popular series!

 

Add a Comment
41. The Egypt Game (1967)

The Egypt Game. Zilpha Keatley Snyder. 1967/2009. Simon & Schuster. 215 pages. [Source: Review copy]

Not long ago in a large university town in California, on a street called Orchard Avenue, a strange old man ran a dusty shabby store. Above the dirty show windows a faded peeling sign said: A-Z Antiques Curios Used Merchandise. 

Part of me wishes I'd read The Egypt Game years ago. I loved, loved, LOVED it. Though part of me still loves the fact that there are still WOW books waiting for me to 'discover' them. I do love being swept away by a great book.

The Egypt Game celebrates friendship and imagination. The Egypt Game was invented by Melanie Ross and April Hall. Soon after they meet--very soon--they discover they are kindred spirits. Both have big imaginations, love storytelling, and have a fascination with Ancient Egypt. The Egypt Game is played in an abandoned lot near their neighborhood. They sneak in through a gap in the fence, I believe. Melanie's younger brother--much younger brother, Marshall--is part of the fun as well. He's four, and, he almost always, always brings his octopus, Security. By the end of the book, there are SIX "Egyptians" playing the Egypt game...

I do love the storytelling and imaginative play. How creative they all are in coming up with ideas for what to act out or play next. But I also love how they build a world and fill it with stuff, with costumes as well. But I also love the mystery element to the novel.

I would definitely recommend this one. I came to love all the characters. And there was a scene that just got to me--it reminded me so much of To Kill A Mockingbird. Anyway, I loved this one, and you may too. If you've read it, I'd love to know what you think of it!

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on The Egypt Game (1967) as of 5/29/2015 1:15:00 PM
Add a Comment
42. Profile - Boo Cook - Comic Artist

 

Oh my gods. Pencil roughs for a writer would be never heard of in old weekly comics -you drew it and that was that. If you are doing a graphic novel or a series you REALLY want to be your best work then this amount of effort could be useful.



I just say "Why spend time on thumb-nails and roughs -just draw the feckin' book!"  But that might just be me. Boo Cook does seem to be enjoying himself though....WHAT???

Add a Comment
43. Sophie's Animal Parade - a bookwrap







Unwrapping...








Written by Amy Dixon and Illustrated by Katia Wish.   Ages 3-7




Unwrapping the illustrations...





















"Everything Sophie drew came to life.  Mama called it Sophie's imagination. Sophie called it magic."  

     Thus begins the charming tale of Sophie, the little girl with the magic pencils who creates scrumptious foods, cozy places to rest and snuggly apparel to don when she feels cold.  

     Then she takes her wizardly ways to a whole new level and starts creating animal friends to keep her company when she is feeling lonely.  She thinks it would be fun to host a tea party and of course all her animals are invited.  

     First she conjures up a cute baby polar bear who is way too hot in her room,  then a duck who isn't interested in playing hide-and-seek but just wants to swim, a giraffe who gets a pain in his neck because the room is way too short for his tallness.... and on and on and on.....  

     So much chaos ensues that Sophie's only alternative is to take her brood outdoors where she encounters a strange boy and they hit it off immediately.  Together they bring order out of the bedlam and became fast friends to boot.  Now Sophie imagines in two's.  How sweet!



About the author...






Growing up as one of seven siblings, the only peace and quiet I ever got was inside a book. Once I had my own kids, I rediscovered my love for picture books at the public library. It was the one place I knew all four of my kids would be happy . . . and quiet. I write from my home, where I live with my four little inspirations and my marathon-running husband, Rob.








About the illustrator...







Katia Wish is a children’s book writer and illustrator based in Boston, MA. She is currently working on illustrating two children’s books from Sky Pony Press and Boys Town Press, both to be released in Spring 2015. She is the winner of the 2011 Tomie DePaola Award from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.
In addition to working on children’s books and magazines, Katia teaches illustration at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design. Katia’s work has been exhibited in galleries throughout New England.
Katia is originally from Belarus, where she grew up. The influences and sensibilities of both her home country and her experiences in the United States contribute to Katia's work.




Read on and read always!

It's a wrap.




Contact me at storywrapsblog@gmail.com


0 Comments on Sophie's Animal Parade - a bookwrap as of 5/29/2015 9:41:00 AM
Add a Comment
44. Transitions

It's not enough to just leave an extra blank line or have a chapter break to transition between scenes.

http://scotteagan.blogspot.com/2015/04/transitions-between-chapters-not-just.html

0 Comments on Transitions as of 5/29/2015 11:39:00 AM
Add a Comment
45. One Day In The Life of a Comic Book Artist

 
I was responding to a comment earlier about the "old School" comic artists who work on paper and....did someone at a Wacom drawing tablet just faint?  Any way, here is Gerry Alanguilan who has worked for Marvel, DC, Image and so on.


Add a Comment
46. YALSAblog Tweets of the Week - May 29, 2015

A short list of tweets from the past week of interest to teens and the library staff that work with them.

Do you have a favorite Tweet from the past week? If so add it in the comments for this post. Or, if you read a Twitter post between May 29 and June 4 that you think is a must for the next Tweets of the Week send a direct or @ message to lbraun2000 on Twitter.

Add a Comment
47. Spotlight and Giveaway: A Kiss for Lady Mary by Ella Quinn

This morning I have a spotlight and giveaway for A Kiss for Lady Mary by Ella Quinn

A Kiss for Lady Mary
The Marriage Game # 6

By: Ella Quinn

Releasing May 26th, 2015

Kensington Books

Blurb
Ella Quinn’s bachelors do as they like and take what they want. But when the objects of their desire are bold, beautiful women, the rules of the game always seem to change…

Handsome, charming, and heir to a powerful Viscount, Christopher “Kit” Featherton is everything a woman could want—except interested in marriage. So when he hears that someone on his estate near the Scottish border is claiming to be his wife, Kit sets off to investigate.

Since her parents’ death, Lady Mary Tolliver has been hounded by her cousin, a fortune-hunting fool after her inheritance. Refusing to settle for anything less than love, Mary escapes to the isolated estate of rakish bachelor, Kit Featherton. Knowing he prefers Court to the country, she believes she will be safe. But when Kit unexpectedly returns, her pretend marriage begins to feel seductively real…

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2015/03/a-kiss-for-lady-mary-marriage-game-6-by.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24980059-a-kiss-for-lady-mary?from_search=true
Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/106521-the-marriage-game

Buy Links: Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo | Publisher

Author Info
Ella Quinn lived all over the United States, the Pacific, Canada, England and Europe before finally discovering the Caribbean. She lives in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands with her wonderful husband, three bossy cats and a loveable Great Dane.

 

Excerpt

Lady Mary Tolliver heaved a sigh of relief. She’d been at her brother, the Earl of Barham’s, dower house with her grandmother, the Dowager Duchess of Bridgewater, and her widowed aunt, Lady Eunice Phipson, for two weeks now. Thankfully there was still no sign of her cousin, Gawain Tolliver. Perhaps he’d finally given up attempting to compromise her. She’d been taking her regular walks after breakfast for the past week. But this morning she had remembered advice given to her by a friend to vary her schedule as long as Gawain was after her and had decided to go earlier.

She was about a half mile from the house when a familiar male voice asked, “How much longer?”

Mary stopped and scanned the woods. Suddenly, the dark green she’d taken for leaves ruffling in the slight breeze moved revealing a jacket.

Blast it all! It was Gawain, and she’d almost stepped into his trap. She’d known her luck wouldn’t hold. She slipped behind a tree, and listened.

“About another half hour,” a man with a rougher voice answered.

“Have the coach ready,” Gawain ordered. “I want to get away as soon as we grab her.”

She backed up carefully, keeping the dense foliage between herself and her cousin, until she could no longer see Gawain clearly.

“Did you hear something?”

Mary stifled a groan. How far was it to the house, and could she outmaneuver them? She glanced around. It was eight, maybe nine, feet to the old oak tree where, as a child, she’d won many a game of hide and seek. Gathering her skirts, she dashed to it and hid in the hollow part of the trunk. Gawain would have to know exactly where to look to see her. Still, she could not remain in the tree all day. She would have to hope they gave up waiting for her and left, planning to return another day.

“Nah, sir, just a deer or something.”

Several minutes later, Mary shifted and dirt fell around her. This space had been far more commodious when she’d been younger. Something landed on her arm and began to crawl. Stifling a scream, she swatted at it, dislodging more debris. Her heart thudded, making it hard for her to breathe. It was certain her cousin wouldn’t leave until at least the time when she normally passed by. She would just have to run. As they began to converse again, she picked up her skirts and dashed out of the home wood. Once she reached the outer part of the curtilage she raced through the rose garden, staying off the flagstone and gravel paths to the nearest door and darted in.

“My lady,” Cook exclaimed. “You look like the devil hisself is after you.” The old woman narrowed her eyes. “What have you got into? Shake out your skirts before you come in any farther. Is that a dead spider on your arm?”

Mary leaned back against the door, sucking in great gulps of air as she caught her breath. “That might be an apt description.” She briefly considered asking Cook not to tell Grandmamma, but that would only insure her grandmother heard about it sooner. “I’ll be down for breakfast as soon as I wash my hands.”

Rafflecopter Giveaway (Three iBOOK copies of A KISS FOR LADY MARY)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Add a Comment
48. Sadie Reviews & Interviews


A few new shiny things to share. I did an interview with the wonder that is Mr. Schu for Watch. Connect. Read.   

And Julie Morstad and I rode our tandem bike over to Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast to talk to the fantastic Julie Danielson. 

Julie shared some early sketches from This is Sadie



I'm having a hard time keeping up with all the kind words from bloggers and over on Instagram so if I miss anything, do please let me know. Here are a few responses from the past week.
Author Sara O’Leary takes a remarkably common premise –kids have wild imaginations, and can do wondrous things with nothing more than an empty box– and weaves something incredible. Her text harkens back to a day of unforced simplicity in children’s literature, when easy ideas were delivered with just a pinch of poetry to make them go down even easier. Kinderlit Canada
I don’t know if it was seeing Sadie in a box, on a boat, hammering, wearing a fox mask, sleeping in a blanket fort or looking for her wings that felt most like a connection to my younger self. I do know that reading the lines – “A perfect day is spent with friends. Some of them live on her street, and some of them live in the pages of a book” – made me want to give a copy to every family I know. The Book Jam
‘This is Sadie’ by the formidable picture book pairing of Sara O’Leary and Julie Morstad is a celebration of creatively quirky characters and positive affirmation of a wild and wonderful imagination. Pictures Book Blogger
In "This Is Sadie" the little girl with a big imagination sees the ordinary as extraordinary. The Waterloo Record
In this story Sara O'Leary has given readers a character to cherish.  Through Sara's words we see a girl who looks at her world, making it larger with her making, doing and being. Librarian's Quest
Sadie's imagination is so huge she can go anywhere, be anything, without leaving her room. With soft, whimsical illustrations and spare, lyrical text, This Is Sadie takes us on a sweet adventure and reminds us of how far and wide our own imaginations can go.Staff recommendation, Powell's 
Strap on your imaginations and take a trip with Sadie (I think you are going to fall in love with her). This gentle ode to creativity will make a nice addition to storytime. Don’t miss this little Canadian gem, beautifully illustrated by Julie Morstad. Valley Storytime
Earlier reviews and interviews can be found here.

0 Comments on Sadie Reviews & Interviews as of 5/29/2015 11:29:00 AM
Add a Comment
49. Poetry Friday -- Probably Not Poetry, But a Darn Cute Rhyming Book



What This Story Needs is a Pig in a Wig
by Emma J. Virján
Harper, 2015
review copy provided by the publisher

So many rhyming animals (up to and including a panda in a blouse) join the pig on her boat that she finally sends them all away, which leaves her blissfully, and then forlornly, alone. Until...surprise ending!

A book with not too many words needs to have interesting pictures that help the reader and add to the story, like when the goat on the log performs a balancing act, or when the rat trades its top hat for a swimming cap when pig sends them all off the boat. And not only does this book have a pig in a wig, it has lots of hidden pig snout shapes to look for.

This book is kid-tested and kid-approved. With no prompting, kindergarteners began rhyming along with the book (although they did have to ask what a blouse was). And they loved the author's picture (she's wearing a drawn-on red wig and a pig nose).

Looking forward to more books in this fun series!

Margaret has the Poetry Friday roundup today at Reflections on the Teche. Next week we'll start building the July-December schedule!


0 Comments on Poetry Friday -- Probably Not Poetry, But a Darn Cute Rhyming Book as of 5/29/2015 6:59:00 AM
Add a Comment
50.

ff6296625f436edeb31e0759e3e231a1

Add a Comment

View Next 25 Posts