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1. J.K. Rowling’s Wonderful, Polite Discussion on Dumbledore with Fan

In the recent days, even after Jo tweeted that she didn’t take offense to a fan’s question on Dumbledore’s sexuality, many news sources are still praising J.K. Rowling for her “great come back,” her amazing “shut down,” her “burn” of the fan’s opinion that she did not see Dumbledore as gay, always seeing a possible connection between Dumbledore and McGonagall. As J.K. rowling said herself, the question was not offensive, it was “gentle” and “her response was very sweet.” The media continues to misrepresent the following Twitter interaction between Jo and fan, @anakocovic21:

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@anakocovic21 Tweeted in reply “Amazing answer…Yes you are absolutely right. Such an inspiration!!!”

After fans following the conversation began rallying for Jo’s response, with the perspective of the response being a quick quipped “shut down.” Jo defended @anakocovic21, saying:

A minority of people are rushing to judgement without the facts, so here they are: did NOT ask an offensive question!

My reply to her question was gentle and her response was very sweet. Read the full conversation here:

. LOTS of people saw Dumbledore and McGonagall together. You aren’t alone!

Given all the poor media attention, Ms. Kocovic appears to have shut down her profile, at least from the public eye. (On the plus side, she gained a new follower: J.K. Rowling.) Here at Leaky, we hope to spread the truth about the Twitter conversation between Jo and @anakocovic21, and help stop the spread of this media-fueled smear campaign.

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2. Enemies Yay

EnemiesYay_MouseBear

Enemies Yay is the collaborative work of Laura Blythman and Pete Cromer – both of whom also create incredible colorful work of their own.  Utilizing paper cuts adorned with neon color palettes and patterns, this collaborative collection packs a real punch. With equal parts playfulness and detail, it’s hard not to spend hours looking at each piece, there always seems to be more to discover in their work, which often features quirky characters and lush florals. Their work is a testament to the magic that can happen when you collaborate, and it’s exciting to see what will become of the duo next! Be sure to check out their instagram where they share news and sales of their prints!

EnemiesYay_Forest_Bear EnemiesYay_Happiness EnemiesYay_LetsInviteEveryone EnemiesYay_Lovers EnemiesYay_MAgic EnemiesYay_Poster EnemiesYay_StreetPeople fluer_cushionsPost written by Bryna Shields.

 

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3. Book Review: Death on Diamond Mountain: A True Story of Obsession, Madness, and the Path to Enlightenment

From Goodreads:
When thirty-eight-year-old Ian Thorson died from dehydration and dysentery on a remote Arizona mountaintop in 2012, The New York Timesreported the story under the headline: "Mysterious Buddhist Retreat in the Desert Ends in a Grisly Death." Scott Carney, a journalist and anthropologist who lived in India for six years, was struck by how Thorson’s death echoed other incidents that reflected the little-talked-about connection between intensive meditation and mental instability.
 
Using these tragedies as a springboard, Carney explores how those who go to extremes to achieve divine revelations—and undertake it in illusory ways—can tangle with madness. He also delves into the unorthodox interpretation of Tibetan Buddhism that attracted Thorson and the bizarre teachings of its chief evangelists: Thorson’s wife, Lama Christie McNally, and her previous husband, Geshe Michael Roach, the supreme spiritual leader of Diamond Mountain University, where Thorson died.
 
Carney unravels how the cultlike practices of McNally and Roach and the questionable circumstances surrounding Thorson’s death illuminate a uniquely American tendency to mix and match eastern religious traditions like LEGO pieces in a quest to reach an enlightened, perfected state, no matter the cost.
 
Aided by Thorson’s private papers, along with cutting-edge neurological research that reveals the profound impact of intensive meditation on the brain and stories of miracles and black magic, sexualized rituals, and tantric rites from former Diamond Mountain acolytes, A Death on Diamond Mountain is a gripping work of investigative journalism that reveals how the path to enlightenment can be riddled with danger.
Writing
Last year I read and reviewed Carney's The Red Market about trade in humans and their various body parts.  It was great, but I think this is the book that has cemented him as a must-read author for me.  His reporting style here is very similar to Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven.  He takes on a specific case of an inexcusable death and uses it to examine the entirety of Tibetan Buddhism, focusing in on one particular guru and the cult that sprung up around him.  It's incredibly detailed and accessible to all readers, including those who are unfamiliar with the concepts of Buddhism.  As detailed as he is with his explanations of the religion, its history, and its practices, he also manages to keep the pace active and the reader involved in the story.

My one other note about the writing is that it's obvious that Carney has done his research and spoken to a variety of sources.  In addition to references, he includes detailed notes on each chapter describing who he spoke to and where the information came from.  It's incredibly helpful from a documentation standpoint, and also serves to provide an interested reader with a jumping off point for further study.

Entertainment Value
Cults in general fascinate me, but all of the cults I've read about have largely centered around a Judeo-Christian worldview (Jim Jones, who started as a church, the FLDS church, etc).  I was thrilled to have a chance to see a cult that centers around something so completely different, but that works in the same ways.  I couldn't believe how such disparate religions could become cult followings so similarly. At the same time, it made sense, particularly when paired with Carney's observation that cults tend to form in any religion when mystical experiences take precedence over religious traditions.

Overall
I thoroughly enjoyed my read of this book and would recommend it to anyone who is interested in cults, Tibetan Buddhism, religious extremism, or even true crime.  Carney is an author who is now officially on my radar and who I'll be watching for in the future.

Thanks to Roshe and Gotham Books for providing me with a copy to review.

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4. Reminder: J.K. Rowling’s “Very Good Lives” To Be Published Next Month

As reported previously here on Leaky, J.K. Rowling’s Harvard Commencement Address is being printed in book form. All proceeds of the little, yet powerful, 80-page book will go towards Lumos, as well as university-wide scholarships for potential Harvard students. The book is available for preorder, and will be published April 14, 2105. Amazon’s summary of the book reads:

In 2008, J.K. Rowling delivered a deeply affecting commencement speech at Harvard University. Now published for the first time in book form, VERY GOOD LIVES presents J.K. Rowling’s words of wisdom for anyone at a turning point in life. How can we embrace failure? And how can we use our imagination to better both ourselves and others?

Drawing from stories of her own post-graduate years, the world famous author addresses some of life’s most important questions with acuity and emotional force.

Sales of VERY GOOD LIVES will benefit both Lumos, a charity organization founded by J.K. Rowling, which works to transform the lives of disadvantaged children, and university-wide financial aid at Harvard University.

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5. Emma Watson named #1 on “99 Top Outstanding Woman 2015″

AskMen is known for posting lists with themes such as “The Top 99 Most Desirable Women.” This year, claiming to be “better than that,” they changed their theme to give notoriety to outstanding, inspirational women. Emma Watson was voted as the number one most outstanding woman, according to the list. AskMen gives criteria used to make the list, by posting a video on their site below the article, the video titled “How We Chose the Top 99?”. AskMen writes why Emma is outstanding, saying:

Hermione Granger is courageous, loyal and moral to a fault — she embodies the best of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world. So it’s fitting that the little girl who was cast to play her back in 1999 would grow up to become a woman not so different from the fictional heroine she embodied. The 24-year-old Watson has noble pursuits in mind. Her alignment with the United Nations’ HeForShe campaign has made her the face of feminism right now, and she’s helping change the way men think about women. Now that’s power.

Emma Watson is so many incredible things at once — rich, successful, famous, stylish, beautiful, intelligent, personable, kind. And yet, rather than be content with a life of luxury, she’s thrown her back into a serious social issue in an effort to shift the way our society treats women. — James Bassil, AskMen Publisher

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6. The Science of Reading

In a recent neuroscience study, researchers focused on the visual side of the brain and concluded that volunteers saw words and pictures and not individual letters. This research could prove very helpful in understanding how struggling readers process words, and improve tactics for teaching.

Arbordale truly believes that reading, and being read to, is a very important part of growing up. So, we are closing out the work with a Friday Reads Giveaway! Comment on this post to be entered to win these three Arbordale books!

Daisylocks_128 ShapeFamily_128 AnimalPartners_187

Learn more about the Journal of Neuroscience article on Science News.


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7. Outcomes-Based Planning Discussion at the YALSA Board Meeting on Friday at Midwinter 2015

Throughout the YALSA Board meeting at Midwinter, the Board discussed some of the possible changes YALSA needs to make so that the organization can grow and change its strategic plan to reflect the Futures Report. In order to incorporate outcomes-based thinking into the strategic planning process, several things must be decided relating to the future direction of YALSA. What do we really want YALSA to look like in the future?

Having worked with outcomes-based planning in a school setting for several years, we were very pleasantly surprised to hear a number of board members relate their experiences with outcomes-based planning at their libraries. I think that everyone understood that this type of planning serves to focus the activities of an organization to attain measurable results. To that end, the YALSA board can look forward to many fruitful discussions between now and annual conference in San Francisco as we define and refine our goals and intended outcomes.

Is outcomes-based planning something new to you? IMLS has a section of their website that explains the process and why it is beneficial for libraries to use it. If you have more questions about outcomes-based planning and YALSA, feel free to contact Board members Vicki Emery or Carrie Kausch. Contact information can be found on the YALSA website.


Vicki Emery and Carrie Kausch

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8. Harts Pass No. 244

The North Cascades wolverine study is coming to an end... so now the ONLY way to keep track of these critters is to keep reading these highly educational and always entertaining comics :)

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9. the sweetest thing (from Tamra Tuller)

Those of you who thought I could not possibly get any older were wrong.

Another birthday nears.

But oh how sweet has sweet Tamra Tuller made these days of near senescence.

Tamra, I've never seen anything like this. It's a magnificent idea, perfectly packaged.

And together we have built three very pretty books.

Thank you for the years, the friendship, the stories. Honey. That's just right.

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10. something different

I'm taking an art class -- two -- at Creativebug when I return from family, schools, and a conference in Mississippi. Both are on-demand work-alongs -- you choose the time and place to work on each session -- and both are Lisa Congdon classes. Sketchbook Explorations and Basic Line Drawing.

I'm a life-long doodler as well as a notebook devotee and evangelist, as you may know, and in this year of exploration, I've dedicated myself to working more with my hands, going back to my roots. I want to get out of my head -- all those words! -- and use my mind in a different way.


I leave for Mississippi on Easter Sunday and I'll be home on April 11. Wanna work/play together when I'm back? I have no expectations. I'm in this for the discovery, the exploration, totally. You've got a couple of weeks to investigate at Creativebug, and you can take a different class if you like, or no class at all. I've slowly been buying the materials for my two classes and I'm just about ready to go.

I'm off to a local school this morning. Atlanta International School. All day talking about history and stories and personal narrative with grades 4 through 8. And KEEPING A NOTEBOOK.

Gotta put on my face. Happy day, friends. xoxo

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11. What Did You Do This Week, Gail? March 27th Edition

What I focused on this rough week: Small things, since I could squeeze those into the time I had.

Goal 1. Mummy Book. I did some tweaking of early chapters based on some new research and found some new material for research.

Goal 2. Short Work. Worked on the new essay. Did a little bit of market research.

Goal 3. Adult version of Greg and Emma. Looked at a couple of pages. Had some ideas that I've forgotten. Did some market research.

Goal 5. Community Building. I finished the Connecticut Children's Lit Calendar for next month and passed it on to Computer Guy for fitting into the e-newsletter. It will go out this weekend. Also did a little tweeting.

Goal 6. Continue Marketing Saving the Planet & Stuff. I put in a few evenings on an annotated excerpt program I'm doing here next month for STP&S.

Things could have been a whole lot worse.


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12. It must time for a drink

Another dog character pencil sketch. It must time for a drink.



via Studio Bowes Art Blog at http://ift.tt/1bC2kY9

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13. Social Media Etiquette

What not to do when using social media.


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14. Week in Review, March 23rd-27th

Week in Review

This week on hbook.com…

Pam Muñoz Ryan Talks with Roger

March 2015 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book: trailblazing women, Earth Day 2015, National Poetry Month, folklore from around the world, and sporting life

Not on our site, but worth a read: Elizabeth Wein invokes Roger in her BoB decision

Reviews of the Week:

Read Roger:

Out of the Box:

Lolly’s Classroom:

Events calendar

See overviews of previous weeks by clicking the tag week in review. Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to keep up-to-date on our articles!

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The post Week in Review, March 23rd-27th appeared first on The Horn Book.

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15. Alan Rickman in BAFTA Interview and Upcoming Projects

Alan Rickman is known for not being the subject of many interviews. However, BAFTA seems to be lucky. Rickman’s interview is to be a part of BAFTA’s “Life in Pictures” event–where many big name stars (such as Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, etc.) sit down for talks with BAFTA. The event is April 15. The Variety reports:

Rickman began his acting career in theater, where his credits include a Tony nomination for his performance in the Royal Shakespeare Company production of “Les Liaisons Dangereuses.” His feature film debut came in the 1988 alongside Bruce Willis in “Die Hard.” Since then he has appeared in more than 40 films, including the Harry Potter series, “Sweeney Todd” and “Love Actually.”

Rickman was awarded a BAFTA in 1992 for his role as the Sheriff of Nottingham in “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.” In the same year, he was also BAFTA-nominated for his lead role in “Truly, Madly, Deeply.” He received two further BAFTA nominations in 1996 and 1997, for “Sense and Sensibility” and “Michael Collins,” respectively.

Rickman made his directorial debut in 1997 with “The Winter Guest,” starring Emma Thompson and Phyllida Law. He recently directed and co-wrote his second feature film, historical drama “A Little Chaos,” in which he also stars with Kate Winslet and Stanley Tucci. The film premiered as the Closing Gala at the 2014 Toronto Film Festival, and opens in the U.K. on April 17. Focus Features recently removed the pic from its release schedule in the U.S.

Rickman will next be seen in “Eye in the Sky,” co-starring Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, Colin Firth and Barkhad Abdi, and will reprise his role as the Blue Caterpillar in “Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass.”

 

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16. Helder Guimarães

You have to see this…

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17. ‘Home’ Review Roundup

What the critics are saying about the cutesy alien invasion offering from DreamWorks.

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18. To Serve

In restaurants, the food is served;
In tennis, it’s a ball.
In prison, it’s a stretch of time;
To jurors, it’s a call.

We serve our country, serve our guests
And serve at someone’s side;
We serve as ushers or as maids
To march before a bride.

We’re served a summons or a suit
To answer to the law
And sometimes, justice being served
Provides a deal that’s raw.

In life, however, oftentimes
What I, in fact, observe,
Is that we rarely get what we
Believe that we deserve.

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19. Sony’s New and Improved ‘Smurfs’ Pushed Back…Again

Director Kelly Asbury says the story "was not fully in the place we wanted it to be yet."

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20. ‘Harvey Beaks’ Creator C.H. Greenblatt on How to Break Into The Biz and Why Artists Should Post on Tumblr

C.H. Greenblatt, creator of the animated series "Chowder," is back with a new series, "Harvey Beaks," that premieres this Sunday on Nickelodeon.

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21. Hoopers Vlog 27 March, 2015: Alan Class Comics

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22. New Adult Fiction Genre - Contemporary Romance - #WriteTip



There is a new genre emerging..."New Adult" fiction for older teens aka college-aged readers. You never stop growing up, but little in the market seems to address the coming-of-age that also happens between the ages of Nineteen to Twenty-six. Life changes drastically once high school is over, you have college, first jobs, first internships, first adult relationships…

Part of the appeal of NA is that the storylines are about characters who are taking on adult responsibilities for the first time without guidance from their parents. And the storylines generally have a heavy romance element. 

Keep this in mind as you revise your wonderful story, New Adult books are mostly about that specific time in every person's life—the time when the apron strings are cut from your parents, you no longer have a curfew, you're experiencing the world for the very first time, in most cases, with innocent eyes. New Adult is this section of your life where you discover who you want to be, what you want to be, and what type of person you will become. This time defines you. This is the time of firsts, the time where you can't blame your parents for your own bad choices. 


An NA character has to take responsibility for their own choices and live with the consequences. Most storylines are about twenty-something (18 to 26) characters living their own lives without any parents breathing down their necks, and learning to solve things on their own as they would in real life. New Adult fiction focuses on switching gears, from depending on our parents to becoming full-fledged, independent adults.

I am a firm believer that if you’re going to write a certain genre that you should read it, too. So I’m going to recommend that you start devouring NA novels to get a real sense and understanding of the genre before you write one.

Here are some great recommendations: https://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult-romance and http://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult and https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/new-adult-romance
 

Just as YA is fiction about teens discovering who they are as a person, New Adult (NA) is fiction about building your own life as an actual adult. As older teen readers discover the joy of the Young Adult genres, the New Adult—demand may increase. This, in turn, would give writers the chance to explore the freedom of a slightly older protagonist (over the age of 18 and out of high school, like the brilliant novel, "BEAUTIFUL DISASTER" by the amazing talents of author, Jamie McGuire) while addressing more adult issues that early 20-year-olds must face.

Older protagonists (basically, college students) are surprisingly rare; in a panel on YA literature at Harvard’s 2008 Vericon, City of Bones author talked about pitching her novel, then about twenty-somethings, as adult fiction. After several conversations, Clare realized she had to choose between adults and teens. She went with teens.

Quote from the publisher, St. Martin’s Press: We are actively looking for great, new, cutting edge fiction with protagonists who are slightly older than YA and can appeal to an adult audience. Since twenty-somethings are devouring YA, St. Martin’s Press is seeking fiction similar to YA that can be published and marketed as adult—a sort of an “older YA” or “new adult.” In this category, they are looking for spunky but not stupid, serious but not dull, cutting-edge, supernatural stories.

Quote from Georgia McBride, author (Praefatio) and founder of #YALitChat and publisher at Month9Books: "New Adult is a fabulous idea in theory, and authors seem to be excited about it. But in a world where bookstores shelf by category, to them, it is either  Adult or Young Adult. Some booksellers even call their YA section “teen.” And when you have a character who is over a certain age (19 seems to be the age most consider the start of New Adult), it is received as Adult. In some cases, the designation by publishers causes more confusion than not.
Let’s face it, YA is associated with teens, and at 19, most no longer consider themselves teens. So, it would support the theory of placing these “New Adult” titles in the Adult section. However, with the prevalence of eBook content, it would seem that the powers that be could easily create a New Adult category if they really wanted to...."

There’s also a list on goodreads of New Adult book titles. These books focus on college age characters, late teens to early twenties, transitioning into the adult world.

Some popular authors of the NA category include:
  • Jamie McGuire
  • Jessica Park
  • Tammara Webber
  • Steph Campbell
  • Liz Reinhardt
  • Abbi Glines
  • Colleen Hoover 
  • Sherry Soule
http://www.wattpad.com/story/29486760-irresistible-mistake-new-adult-romantic-suspense


Would you buy New Adult books? 
Does the genre appeal to you? 

Does it sound better than YA (teen novels)? 
 
Or are you happy with YA as it stands?

Do you consider YA to include characters that are over the age of eighteen? 
 

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23. BOBBEE BEE:WHOSE JOB IS IT? (REPLAY)

THIS is a story about four people named EVERYBODY, SOMEBODY, ANYBODY, AND NOBODY. There was an important job to be done and EVERYBODY was sure SOMEBODY would do it. ANYBODY could have done it, but NOBODY did it. SOMEBODY got angry about that, because it was EVERYBODY'S job. EVERYBODY thought ANYBODY could do it but NOBODY realized that EVERYBODY wouldn't do it. It ended up that EVERYBODY blamed SOMEBODY when NOBODY did what ANYBODY could have done.




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24. Illustration Friday: Outside



You could call this a late submission for last week's Ruckus or an uncharacteristically early submission for this week's Outside.  I prefer to call it versatile by way of serendipity.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend.  It promises to be very warm where we are.

Happy spring!

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25. Homework Sketches

The beginning of the final sketches for my comic “The Boyler Kat.”



via Studio Bowes Art Blog at http://ift.tt/1bC2miP

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