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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Jerry Pinkney, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. An Aesop Classic with a Meaningful Message!

The Grasshopper & the Ants

By Jerry Pinkney

As fall silently and soulfully descends with its riot of foliage and scattering of larger than usual acorns, it’s also a reminder of not only the change of seasons …but of things to come.

Winter with its blowing snow, howling winds and scarcity of above ground food for the tenderest of creatures is just around the ant hill.

And Caldecott medalist, Jerry Pinkney, has previously delved richly and artistically into the world of Aesop’s fables in his picture books of “The Lion and the Mouse” and “The Tortoise and the Hare.”

Here, in his rendering of Aesop’s “The Grasshopper & the Ants,” prompted by Mr. Pinkney’s wanderings in his own woods, he relates the familiar story of the ant colonies that toil, store and prepare for the onset of bleaker days, while their fellow creature, the grasshopper, just fiddles away his time as a one grasshopper band!

Mr. Pinkney’s art beautifully captures the dogged determination and work ethic of the Ants, versus the rollicking rhythms of the freewheeling  Grasshopper, as the seasons pass.

The tale opens with spring. The joyful and just-in-the-moment Grasshopper beckons his pals, the ants, to join him in a frolic and go fishing.


               “No time to relax

Said the Ants.


The Grasshopper pleads playfully again, come summer, and tempts them with the enticement of a picnic of feasting on “fresh, yummy leaves.”


               “No summer light to waste,”

                replied the Ants.


                Autumn will be here soon.


Though the Grasshopper points out “the world is a playground of leaves,” the Ants toil on eschewing singing and dancing in Jerry Pinkney’s riot of fall color.

And as the inevitability of winter and its harder realities descend for animals, the Grasshopper is not deterred. He instead pleads:


“Wintertime is for making snow angels

and snow-hoppers.


          And oh, how I love the sparkle

          of first snow. Come see!



Alas, as the Grasshopper continues to beg:


           “If only someone would join me!



But, heis left shivering in a winter white world!

Harsh reality does indeed set in for the Grasshopper, as below ground the Ants are snug as the proverbial bugs in a rug. Will they be oblivious to the Grasshopper that fiddled, while they toiled?

Or, is there a balance to be found between fiddling nonstop and foraging at the same tempo? Will these work horse Ants share what they have stored, and come to see that it is the infectious enthusiasm of the Grasshopper and his joyful music that will also FEED them through the winter with HIS gifts of song and story…or not?

Jerry Pinkney’s take on this timeless Aesop fable tale is wonderfully done. His picture book, has a neat fold out page allowing a view of Grasshopper freezing above ground, while below ground are the cozy Ants, lounging in leafy comfort amid the storehouses of food they have labored so hard to attain. This simultaneous view lends itself to a reader’s “What would you do?” query.

And this picture book’s lively back and forth reality of the practical and the poetic in life, perhaps allows that BOTH feed us, getting us through those “winters” in our lives.

It will be very interesting to see what your young reader takes from this classic Aesop tale brought to such vibrancy by Jerry Pinkney, and continues down the centuries to beg the question, “With what do we continually need to feed ourselves?”

Maybe Aesop is subtlety hinting that it not by mere food consumption that we are truly fed, but by a whole host of other things like nature, art, music….and the shared connection to others. And that this is how we make it through the seasons of life.

Do we also work hard? Parents reading this book to their young readers are living proof of that fact. But perhaps, as Mr. Pinkney, via Aesop points out, taking some balanced time to notice what is going on around us should be one of the reasons why we work so hard. And that is to enjoy our life journey through the seasons….of our lives. Each is unique and not to be missed.

Aesop’s tales always had morals. And the usual moral of this fable is:


     “Don’t put off till tomorrow,

what you can do today.”

Maybe the Grasshopper is not meant to be seen as such an indolent sloth after all, but someone who sees what needs feeding is the heart and soul, every bit as much as the body.

Just maybe Aesop continues today to say to parents and young readers, “Don’t put off  tomorrow’s responsibilities and joys too long, as the perfect time and season to do both, is now.”

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2. Katie Davis Creates a Video in Honor of Picture Book Month

Happy Picture Book Month! Author Katie Davis has collected wise words from several well-known writers for a video that addresses the following question: What is a Picture Book?

The video embedded above features artwork and quotes from Jerry Pinkney, Nick Bruel, Victoria Kann, and more. To date, it has drawn over 10,000 views on YouTube.

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3. The Eric Carle Museum Reveals Carle Honors Winners

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art has revealed the honorees for the 2014 Carle Honors.  The honor pays tribute to four different children’s creators. Françoise Mouly, publisher and editorial director for TOON Books and art editor of The New Yorker won the "Bridge" honor. Jerry Pinkney, Children's book illustrator was honored with the "Artist" honor. Children's librarian Henrietta Smith was given the "Mentor" honor. Reach Out and Read, which is represented by Brian Gallagher and Dr. Perri Klass, was honored with the "Angel" honor for the efforts in early literacy. The organization will host its ninth annual awards ceremony in New York to celebrate the honors

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4. GalleyCat Exclusive: NY Times Unveils 10 Best Illustrated Children’s Books of the Year List

unnamedThe New York Times Book Review has unveiled its annual list of the “10 Best Illustrated Children’s Books” of the year.

Shelf Awareness children’s editor Jennifer M. Brown, Caldecott Medal-winning artist Brian Floca, and Caldecott Medal recipient Jerry Pinkney sat on this year’s judging panel. See the complete list below.

Here’s more from the press release: “Since 1952, the Book Review has convened an independent panel of three judges from the world of children’s literature to select picture books on the basis of artistic merit. Each year, judges choose from among thousands of picture books for what is the only annual award of its kind. Lists of past winners of the Best Illustrated Children’s Book Award can be found on NYTimes.com/Books, along with a slide show of this year’s winners.”


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5. 12 Kids’ Books on Showing Thankfulness & Being Grateful

As we begin a season of reflection and celebration, we are pleased to share some of our favorite books on thankfulness and being grateful that will help young readers on their journey to understanding gratitude.

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6. The Grasshopper and the Ants

pinkney_grasshopper and the antsThe Grasshopper & the Ants adds another title to Jerry Pinkney’s growing set of books based on fables by Aesop and Andersen. Unlike his Caldecott-winning The Lion & the Mouse (2009), this title has text, except for an extended wordless sequence in the middle.

But the Caldecott committee will not be comparing this to Pinkney’s other fable books, because they’re only allowed to discuss titles published in 2015.

Here, Pinkney’s adaptation softens the harsher elements of Aesop’s version, allowing the ants to show compassion and portraying the grasshopper as a guy who is devoted to his art rather than just a lazy freeloader. The action starts in the spring and moves quickly through the seasons as the grasshopper implores the ants to stop working and join him fishing, dancing, singing, etc. The ants don’t stop their rushing around to gather food before the snow covers it all up. Pinkney depicts his characters realistically (every leg segment, abdomen, and antenna in place), but dresses the ants in acorn caps and the grasshopper in a natty straw hat and vest.

When winter comes, the grasshopper finds himself surrounded by lots and lots of snow. What follows is a five-spread wordless sequence that juxtaposes the busy ants and the lonely grasshopper. In one especially effective spread, we see the ants in their cozy underground tunnels full of stored food, while a flap folds up to show the grasshopper, hungry and shivering in the snow above them.

Pinkney’s art is as intricate as ever, and it’s clear how much research and thought he put into this book. The endpapers, the illustrative lettering on the title page, and the dual jacket and cover are all exquisite. But to my eye, the pages illustrating the actual story are a little too detailed. They are so full of shapes that it can be hard to figure out what’s happening. This style works better for the ants, with their many dark legs making an interesting repeated design. This style is less successful with the grasshopper. It takes me a second to figure out what position he is sitting in and what he’s doing with all those legs. I also think the wings are too prominent. When I was a kid I spent many hours in the summer hunting and catching grasshoppers and crickets. Their wings stay folded against the abdomen until they jump, so that seems like one aspect Pinkney could have changed to make the character look simpler. I don’t think I’m alone in perceiving this art as overly busy. The first time through, readers will probably struggle to parse the images, but the payoff will come on subsequent readings when they will see more and more as they look again and again.

I don’t want to sound like a downer here. I am a fan of Pinkney’s work and love the texts he chooses to illustrate. Whenever a new book of his comes into the office, I want to drop everything and look at it. But I do think that his style is working against him in this instance.

But that’s just my opinion. I am ready to be convinced otherwise — and I have no doubt the Real Committee will be taking a good, hard look at this book.

The post The Grasshopper and the Ants appeared first on The Horn Book.

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7. This weekend I have been mostly reading.....

......Jacqueline Davies and Jerry Pinkney as I prepare for not one, but two, author lunches this week. Ohhh....I could get used to this!

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8. Friday Keynote - JERRY PINKNEY

Jerry Pinkney is speaking this morning! Here's a link to a slideshow of his book covers and a few quick questions with Jerry in addition to a link about his touring show, WITNESS.

Jerry's talk title, A Sense of Place: Real and Imagined, is as broad a title he could think of to cover what's so important to his work, environment, but Jerry's decided to change his title in honor of something his father used to say upon starting a job (he was a jack-of-all-trades for construction and remodeling.)

His dad would stand in a room he was about to fix or beautify and say:


So Jerry is saying that to us! We're getting a sense of how Jerry builds his stories and artwork.

Jerry gives us a bit of his history, this link is a good start!

My favorite anecdote—serendipity: Jerry's grandfather worked in a pencil factory, so Jerry had a lot of pencils to draw with. As a kid on a corner selling papers, he would sketch passersby while waiting for a sale, and one of his regular customers noticed Jerry's sketches. And this customer invited Jerry to come see his studio: 

That's when the seed of possibility was planted, that a person could grow up to make images every day for work.

He shows us his first book, ADVENTURES OF SPIDER, first published in 1965, STILL IN PRINT and reissued.

HEART: When you look at his images and read his stories, it's always about going along for part of the ride of Jerry's discovery of the story, characters and environment.When he was working on the book GOD BLESS THE CHILD, he interviewed people that had lived through the sharecropping experience and worked to convey in his art and text that initial sense of surprise and delight he got listening to their answers.

HAND: Jerry does his preliminary sketches on plain old 8.5 x 11 copy paper in marker.

HEART: Jerry loves working with Hans Christian Anderson tales, their heartbreaking main characters are ones he's able to re-set into more modern day settings in 19th or 20th century America, when children were still being treated poorly (not that they aren't today! He brings up Bruce Coville's comment about the bullies of today, but for Jerry he's shining a light on the children under slavery and early-century child labor.)

HAND: Jerry's very inspired by past illustration masters. He says he's always straddling

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9. Little Red Riding Hood Books

By Nicki Richesin, The Children’s Book Review
Published: September 13, 2011

If the phrase, “The better to eat you with!” struck terror in your childhood heart, fear not, these inventive retellings of the classic Little Red Riding Hood story will delight your little ones. The Brothers Grimm were especially gifted at creating dark and often haunting fairy tales, but these books below have a bit more gentle appeal. They also may serve as a great conversation starter with your children about the inherent danger of talking to strangers. As the moral of the folktale advises, children should beware of the charming and kind wolf perhaps most of all.

The Story of Little Red Riding Hood by those daring Grimm brothers (beautifully illustrated by Christopher Bing whose youngest daughter modeled for little Red) comes in an old-fashioned album meant to capture the timeless quality of the story. A cautionary tale, including the original black and white illustrated version from 1857, is inserted as a fold-out in the back of the book complete with the underlying moral.

In Betsy Red Hoodie by Gail Carson Levine, the talented author of Ella Enchanted, brings a new spin on the story. Accompanied by her wise-cracking sheep to Grandma’s house, Betsy encounters many obstacles and diversions on her path. Grandma has an unexpected surprise in store for Betsy when she finally arrives at her home. This is the second installment of Betsy’s plucky adventures (preceded by Betsy Who Cried Wolf!) with comic illustrations by Scott Nash.

Bernadette Watts paints a colorful, wondrous forest filled with wildflowers that tempt Little Red Riding Hood to pick a lovely bouquet for her grandmother. The wolf meets a gruesome end when the huntsman cuts him open to rescue them and they fill his belly full of stones. It almost makes one feel sorry for the wolf… so fiendish wolves better watch out for hunters with an ax to grind.

In his bold inventive book, acclaimed artist Daniel Egneus recreates a gothic wonderland for

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10. Turtle in July

Turtle in July

By Marilyn Singer
Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
Scholastic Inc., 1991

Here are some lovely watercolor illustrations done by Jerry Pinkney for a Turtle in July.

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11. Top 100 Picture Books #37: The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney

#37 The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney (2009)
47 points

I love David Wiesner, but as funny as his wordless books are, none of them match this one for the combined power of the storytelling and sheer beauty of the drawings. One of the most deserving Caldecott winners ever. - Mark Flowers

I approach this book with such reverence when I pull it of the shelf. It’s a masterpiece. – Aaron Zenz

Stunning. – Stacy Dillon

Caldecott Award decisions are mysterious things.  No one on a given committee is allowed to talk about what was said or what went down.  I have no information about the 2010 committee that handed Jerry Pinkney his first, long overdue, Caldecott Medal.  If I were to hazard a guess I would have to believe that their deliberations must have been short.  Everyone in 2009 knew that Pinkney was the frontrunner.  If it hadn’t won, great torrents of blood would have been shed.

The plot as written in my review reads, “Set against the African Serengeti of Tanzania and Kenya, a single small mouse escapes the claws of a hungry owl, only to find herself trapped within the paw of a huge lion. On a whim, the lion lets the mouse go and then sets about his merry way. Unfortunately, poachers have been putting up traps, and before he knows it the lion is caught and bound in nasty ropes, high above the ground. To his rescue comes the little mouse, and she nibbles the ropes until they give way and free the lion. In her mouth she leaves with one of the knots of rope, which she gives her family of tiny babies at home to play with. On the final endpapers, the lion and his family of cubs prowl with the mouse and her family safely ensconced on the lion’s back.”

Smart, Mr. Pinkney.  Clever, Mr. Pinkney.  Little, Brown has a weakness for a titleless cover (see: Eggs) so I’m not surprised that they took a chance on this one.  The fact is, though, that without a title the cover is all the more impressive.  A great big gorgeous lion seen head-on in raucous waves of orange, yellow, brown, and gold.  Cleverer still is to turn it over and see the mouse on the back, blown up so that it fills the back cover just as the lion fills the front.  When the book is opened up, the two end up looking at one another, and both appear on the spine.  Nice.

Lest you forget, this book does NOT mark the first time Pinkney has illustrated this story. Recall well his illustrated story in the book Aesop’s Fables. You can see how similar his old lion and mouse team are to this new lion and mouse team here.

PW said, “Pinkney has no need for words; his art speaks eloquently for itself.”

SLJ said, “The ambiguity that results from the lack of words in this version allows for a slower, subtle, and ultimately more satisfying read. Moments of humor and affection complement the drama. A classic tale from a consummate artist.”


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12. Jim Carrey, David Weisner & Jerry Pinkney Get Booked

rolandHere are some literary events to pencil in your calendar this week.

To get your event posted on our calendar, visit our Facebook Your Literary Event page. Please post your event at least one week prior to its date.

Heidi Boghosian will headline a conversation event about her new book, Spying on Democracy, at the Hillside Club. Join in on Tuesday, October 1st starting 8 p.m. (Berkeley, CA)


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13. The Tortoise & the Hare: Jerry Pinkney

Book: The Tortoise & the Hare
Author: Jerry Pinkney
Pages: 40 
Age Range: 3-6

The Tortoise & and the Hare is a not quite wordless retelling of the classic fable by 2010 Caldecott Medal winner Jerry Pinkney. As the book begins, a wolf launches the tortoise and the hare off with a rousing "On your marks, get set ... Go!". After that, the only words are the moral of Aesop's story, "Slow and steady wins the race". These words are spread out over a number of page spreads, with the phrase incrementally added to.

Through rich, detailed illustrations, Pinkney shows each creature's side of the race. The hare is fast, reckless, and distractable (the latter to his regret, late in the story). The hare is plodding and determined. When he encounters a log he can't climb over, he simply goes around. When he needs to cross water, he swims. He always keeps moving. 

Unlike some other picture books based on fables that I've seen, Pinkney keeps a light touch (helped out by the minimal words). There's no heavy-handed moral tone. Just the conclusion that young readers will see - the hare falling asleep, and the determined tortoise winning the race. That is all, and it is more than enough. 

In an author's note at the end of the book, Pinkney explains:

""Slow and steady wins the race" was particularly meaningful in my youth, since I often struggled in school because of dyslexia, but the moral rings truer than ever today. As the pace of our lives continues to speed up, many yearn for a less hurried approach to life."

Indeed, this is a concept that we can all benefit from thinking about, every once in a while. 

Pinkney's illustrations, created from "graphite, watercolor, colored pencils, gouache, and pastel", offer a perfect mix of realism and whimsy. The tortoise looks, and moves, like a real tortoise, but wears a blue cap and a red bandana. The hare has the long legs, arms, and ears that one would expect from a hare, but wears a little checkered sweater. The backgrounds that the animals pass through are full of water, plants, and rocks, rendered with enough detail to make the animals' passage clear, but always secondary to the primary protagonists. In short, the illustrations are masterful. 

Jerry Pinkney's The Tortoise & and Hare is a fresh, entertaining take on a classic fable. Librarians and picture book gift-givers will not want to pass it up. Highly recommended. 

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (@LBKids)
Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Source of Book: Review copy from the publisher

FTC Required Disclosure:

This site is an Amazon affiliate, and purchases made through Amazon links (including linked book covers) may result in my receiving a small commission (at no additional cost to you).

© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook

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14. News Release: 2014 Carle Honors Honorees from the Eric Carle Museum

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art Announces 2014 Carle Honors Honorees

Ninth annual awards celebrate the creative vision and long-term dedication of leaders in the world of picture books

Amherst, MA (May 7, 2014) - The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is pleased to announce the 2014 Carle Honors honorees to be awarded at Guastavino’s in New York City on Thursday, September 18, 2014. The ninth annual gala and fundraiser will fête the talented people who have played an instrumental role in making children’s books a vibrant and influential art and literary form in America. This year, the Carle Honors will award the following: 

Artist: Jerry Pinkney

Celebrated illustrator of over 100 children’s books and winner of numerous awards, including the 2010 Caldecott Medal for The Lion and the Mouse.

Angel: Reach Out and Read represented by Brian Gallagher and Dr. Perri Klass

Tireless promoters of early literacy and school readiness, as exemplified through the Reach Out and Read program established in thousands of pediatric exam rooms nationwide.

Mentor: Henrietta Smith

Influential children’s librarian, scholar, and author; leading advocate for quality and diversity in children’s literature.

Bridge: Françoise Mouly

Publisher and editorial director for TOON Books, high-quality comics for young children; art editor of The New Yorker.

The Carle Honors celebrates individuals and organizations who bring creative vision and long-term dedication to children’s books and the many ways they open children’s minds to art and literacy. The awards are selected each year by a committee chaired by children’s literature historian and critic Leonard S. Marcus, who was central to the founding of the Honors. The committee recognizes four distinct awards: Artist, for lifelong innovation in the field; Angel, whose generous financial support is crucial to making illustrated children’s book art exhibitions, education programs, and related projects a reality; Mentor, editors, designers, and educators who champion the art form; and Bridge, individuals who have found inspired ways to bring the art of the picture book to larger audiences through work in other fields.

The Carle Honors is a critical fundraiser for The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, helping to support the Museum’s in its mission to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. The annual event also includes a silent auction featuring artwork from top illustrators, including Eric Carle.  For ticket and sponsorship information, please contact Rebecca Miller Goggins, Director of Development at 413-658-1118 or rebeccag@carlemuseum.org.

About The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art:

The mission for The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, a non-profit organization in Amherst, MA, is to inspire a love of art and reading. The only full-scale museum of its kind in the United States, The Carle collects, preserves, presents, and celebrates picture books and picture book illustrations from around the world. In addition to underscoring the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of picture books and their art form, The Carle offers educational programs that provide a foundation for arts integration and literacy.

See more details at the Museum’s website at www.carlemuseum.org.

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ALA Award Winners Announced...

Here are the highlights:

The 2010 John Newbery Medal for most outstanding contribution to children’s literature went to When You Reach Me, written by Rebecca Stead.

The 2010 Randolph Caldecott Medal for most distinguished American picture book for children went to The Lion & the Mouse, illustrated and written by Jerry Pinkney.

The 2010 Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults went to Going Bovine, written by Libba Bray.

For a complete list of ALA medalists, click here.

Congratulations to all the outstanding authors and illustrators who were recognized!

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16. 3 Musketeers Mini DONE


"3 Musketeers Mini", © Paula Pertile
image is 8 inches wide (in real life the candy bar is 2 inches wide)
done with Polychromos and a pinch of Prismacolor red, on Stonehenge paper

I confess, there were times in the last stages when I got to thinking WHY am I doing this? Am I crazy? Could be.

But seriously. I think what I enjoy is the exercise of really "seeing". Drawing what's really there, as opposed to what you think you see. For example, when you look at an actual 3 Musketeers Mini candy bar, you see a shiny silver wrapper with red and blue lettering. It would be very tempting to just get out the Silver colored pencil and do the wrapper, then a single red and navy blue to do the lettering. Throw in some shadow and a highlight or two, and you'd be done.

But in reality, there is oh so much more to this. There are oodles of colors in the reflections - greens, reds, blues, of all shades. Then the shapes of the reflections and shadows are really complex. And there are warm and cool tones of greys throughout. When you take each 'sub-shape' and analyze it, its pretty crazy.

For example ~
This is the shiny bit top right, up close. Look at all those shapes.

And this is down left ~

I think they're really cool little compositions all by themselves. If I were an abstract painter I'd just do something like this REALLY BIG ~ and would also probably make a lot more money!
(Hmmm ... maybe I'm on to something here ... )

For a lot of my children's book work, I make stuff up. It helps to keep practicing 'really looking' at details of things to make the 'made up' things look real-er. Of course it also helps to get models or make maquettes, too. But sometimes you just have to rely on your 'making it up' abilities, and the more 'looking' you've done at things, the better chance you have of making something believable. (and I apologize for all the 'single quote marks' in that paragraph)

I will do a step-by-step to put on my site in the next day or two.

In other news, the ALA has announced the Caldecott and Newbury, etc. award winners.
You can read the whole list here on their site.

Jerry Pinkney's The Lion and the Mouse won the coveted Caldecott. I've seen this book, and its bee-yoo-tee-ful.

This is the cover. YUM.

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17. Newbery, Caldecott, and a Faux Pas

by Stacey

The Pulitzers of children's books were announced this week, and the Newbery winner, Rebecca Stead's When You Reach Me, was tweeted about by an insider at Random House 17 minutes before the award was officially revealed. Oops. Such is the danger of the digital age. The post was taken down almost as soon as it was put up, and Random House has been quiet about the culprit.

The Caldecott for best illustrated book goes to Jerry Pinkney's The Lion and the Mouse, a wordless picture book.

If any of you blog readers have read or seen either of these and want to share your thoughts, we'd love to hear them!

3 Comments on Newbery, Caldecott, and a Faux Pas, last added: 1/20/2010
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18. ALA honors for Austin authors; SCBWI conferences and illustration classes for you

It’s been a landmark week for Austin children’s writers.  Three of our gang scored top honors -- a Caldecott Honor, a Sibert Honor and a Newbery Honor from the American Library Association.

Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly

Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly

Our Austin, Texas  chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers (SCBWI) is a little dazed after last weekend’s 2010 award announcements.  Austin’ s Jacqueline Kelly received a Newbery Honor for her YA novel The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate about a girl growing up at the turn of the 19th century.  The  picture book poem All the World penned by Liz Garton Scanlon of Austin and illustrated by Marla Frazee was named one of the two Caldecott Honor books. (Frazee’s second Caldecott Honor.)

All the World

"All the World" by Liz Garton Scanlon, illustrated by Marla Frazee

The Day Glo Brothers by Chris Barton and illustrated by Tony Persiani

And The Day-Glo Brothers written by Chris Barton of Austin and illustrated with retro lines and Day-Glo colors by Tony Persiani won a Sibert Honor for children’s  nonfiction.  (From the ALA – “The Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal is awarded annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished informational book published in English during the preceding year.”)

Our SCBWI chapter claims all three of these writers and we’ll claim Frazee, too.  So that makes four.

All four,  as it just so happens  had been scheduled to present at the Austin SCBWI regional 2010 conference “Destination Publication” next weekend (January 30) with an already honors heavy line-up of authors, editors and agents. Marla  is giving the keynote address along with Newbery Honor author Kirby Larson (Hatti Big Sky)

Another Texan, Libba Bray won the Michael L. Printz Award

1 Comments on ALA honors for Austin authors; SCBWI conferences and illustration classes for you, last added: 1/24/2010
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19. February 2010 Events

(Click on event name for more information)

African American History Month~ USA

National African American Read-inUSA

Black History Month~ Canada

February Literacy Workshops for Parents, Teachers and Writers with Daphne Lee~ Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

National Storytelling Week~ ongoing until Feb 6, United Kingdom

Kolkata Book Fair~ ongoing until Feb 7, Kolkata, India

“Tea with Chachaji” A Musical Production based on Chachaji’s Cup by Uma Krishnaswami~ ongoing until Feb 11, New York, NY, USA

Stories from Childhood: Lin Hai-yin’s Children’s Literature Book Exhibition and Activity Series~ ongoing until Mar 1, Tainan City, Taiwan

2009 Bologna Illustrators Exhibition of Children’s Books~ ongoing until Mar 1, Seoul, Korea

Osborne Collection of Early Children’s Books Presents: Journey to Adventure~ ongoing until Mar 6, Toronto, ON, Canada

Entries Accepted for the Growing Up Asian in America Contest~ ongoing until Mar 10, San Francisco, CA, USA

The Making of the Word Witch: The Poetic & Illustrative Magic of Margaret Mahy & David Elliot~ ongoing until  Mar 14, Ashburton, New Zealand

21st Annual Children’s Book Illustrators Exhibit~ ongoing until Apr 3, Hayward, CA, USA

Mother Goose in an Air-Ship: McLoughlin Bros. 19th Century Children’s Books from the Liman Collection~ ongoing until Apr 18,  Amherst, MA, USA

Heart and Soul: Art from Coretta Scott King Award Books, 2006–2009~ ongoing until Apr 18, Chicago, IL, USA

From The Tiger Who Came to Tea to Mog and Pink Rabbit; A Judith Kerr Retrospective~ ongoing until May, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom

Leo Lee Arts Centre Presents Renowned Canadian Author Deb Ellis~ Feb 1 – 2, Hong Kong

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20. March 2010 Events

(Click on event name for more information)

Bath Literature Festival~ ongoing until Mar 7, Bath, United Kingdom

Exhibition of Joy Mallari’s Artwork From the Book Doll Eyes~ ongoing until Mar 9, Makati City, Philippines

Entries Accepted for the Growing Up Asian in America Contest~ ongoing until Mar 10, San Francisco, CA, USA

The Making of the Word Witch: The Poetic & Illustrative Magic of Margaret Mahy & David Elliot~ ongoing until  Mar 14, Ashburton, New Zealand

21st Annual Children’s Book Illustrators Exhibit~ ongoing until Apr 3, Hayward, CA, USA

Heart and Soul: Art from Coretta Scott King Award Books, 2006–2009~ ongoing until Apr 18, Chicago, IL, USA

New York Public Library Exhibit: 2010 Caldecott Winner Jerry Pinkney’s African-American Journey to Freedom~ ongoing until Apr 18, New York City, NY, USA

Read Across America Day~ Mar 2, USA

Papirolas Festival for Children and Youth~ Mar 2 – 7, Guadalajara, Mexico

20th Abu Dhabi International Book Fair~ Mar 2 – 7, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

World Book Day~ Mar 4, United Kingdom and Ireland

New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards Finalists Announced and On-Line Voting Begins~ Mar 4, New Zealand

Irish Society for the Study of Children’s Literature Conference Mar 5 – 6, Dublin, Ireland

The Environmental Imagination and Children’s Literature~ Mar 5 – 6, Toronto, ON, Canada

Shanghai Literary Festival~Mar 5 – 21, Shanghai, China

Western Washington University Children’s Literature Conference~ Mar 6, Bellingham, WA, USA

Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC) Choices Day and Charlotte Zolotow Award Presentation~ Mar 6, Madison, WI, USA

SCBWI Conference: Creating Diversity in Children’s Literature~ Mar 6, Frederick, MD, USA

SCBWI Writers’ Day with Holly Thompson (Includes a session entitled “Plotting Across Cultures: A Workshop on Writing Intercultural Fiction”)~ Mar 6 – 7, Hong Kong

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21. Drawing from a Story: Illustrations by Selected Caldecott Medal Winners

Last year I joined Rutgers’ (the State University of New Jersery, USA) Child_Lit service. This is a free, unmoderated discussion group convened for the express purpose of examining the theory and criticism of literature for children and young adults. For anyone interested in any aspect of children’s literature, I highly recommend signing up. The service provides a wealth of information and also makes my job a bit easier when looking for events that can be added to our Eventful World calendar.

Last week there was a post on Child_Lit that talked about  Drawing from a Story: Illustrations by Selected Caldecott Medal Winners, an exhibit taking place though May 23rd at the Brandywine River Museum in Chadds Ford, PA, USA.

Myths, fables, fairy tales, and folk tales are usually a child’s first steps into the world of literature, and the illustrations that often accompany the text when such stories are published for children stir the imagination and provide entrée to magical worlds. First awarded in 1938, the Caldecott Medal is considered the most prestigious award for children’s illustration. This exhibition will feature the works of selected Caldecott winners from seven decades, including Maurice Sendak, Dorothy Lathrop, David Wiesner [see image at right], Paul O. Zelinsky, Leo and Diane Dillon, Robert McCloskey, and 2010 medal winner, Jerry Pinkney, among many others.

Deidre Johnson responded on Child_Lit with the following comments which she has also allowed us to share with our readers :

I’ve seen it twice and can’t praise it enough. There’s material from most of the major archival collections, such as the Kerlan and deGrummond, as well as a generous sampling from the illustrators’ private collections.

The display is arranged beautifully — sometimes thematically (fairy tales grouped together, for example), sometimes by medium. There’s even an entire corner devoted to art from David Wiesner’s three winners. The exhibit includes not only art from the first Caldecott (and one of Caldecott’s own sketches for John Gilpin’s Ride!) but also from the two most recent winners. Some of the other materials show process (the McCloskey studies for Make Way for Ducklings seen in Marcus’s Caldecott Celebration are on display, and there are also studies for Rohmann’s My Friend Rabbit).

The Brandywine has hosted some fine exhibits associated with children’s literature in the past, but I think this is one of the best.

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22. Lost Memories Brought Alive - The Three Little Kittens by Jerry Pinkney

The Old and the New

The above pictures are from a very old copy of my favorite nursery rhyme, The Three Little Kittens. This was published by Playmore Books (I am not sure of the year) in what was called, "My tiny 3D book series". When I think of 3D today I am amazed at the differences.
I just discovered Jerry Pinkney has taken my favorite nursery rhyme and updated this wonderful classic. The cats on the cover of Jerry Pinkney's edition(see cover shot below) are posed so perfectly the reader could hug the book. They are so playful looking. The small details on the cats - bows, bells, and bibs bring the kittens alive. I personally wanted to jingle the bell on kittens neck. The language is also updated making it easier and more enjoyable for children.

I will definately be bringing this book to share with my Grade K and Grade 1 students. I will also be bringing along my orange folkmanis stuffed cat and lots of arts supplies. For the musically talented, the inside jacket flap of the book has the story set to music.

I also posted the videoclip of Jerry Pinkey in his studio talking about the book on the sidebar. This is a great introduction to the book for students.

Check out his website to see his many other titles - http://www.jerrypinkneystudio.com/.

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23. Fusenews: Encyclopedia Peck

As far as I’m concerned, every good blog post should begin with fiction starring Gregory Peck.  What we have here is one of the luscious finds boasted by Greg Hatcher over at the site Comic Book Resources.  I’m a big fan of Hatcher because when he does round ups like this one he always takes care to mention a lot of collectible children’s literature.  In this post alone you’ll see what the going price is for a good old hardcover Oz or Narnia title, as well as his discovery of Millions of Cats.  I remember that when I conducted by Top 100 Picture Books Poll that Millions of Cats was the surprise Top Ten winner.  Folks continually forget to give it its due.

  • Collecting Children’s Books has the usual plethora of wonderfulness up and running for your consideration.  First Peter discovers and prints out the complete shortlists of Newbery contenders between the years of 1973-75 (something I wish they still did) and then in a different post considers the state of recent children’s books and whether any of them have been made into Broadway musicals.  None that I can think of, since A Year With Frog and Toad isn’t exactly contemporary.  Coraline did sort of make it to Broadway a year or so ago (or was that considered off-Broadway?), but that’s the only one I can think of.
  • Hey hey!  While we were all sleeping the candidates nominated for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award were announced.  You can see the full list of candidates from countries all over the country here.  If I had the time and ability I would familiarize myself with all those names that are unknown to me.  On the American side of things, however, here are the USA representatives: Ashley Bryan, Eric Carle, Julius Lester, Grace Lin, Walter Dean Myers, Anne Pellowski, Jerry Pinkney, Reading is Fundamental, and Allen Say.  Good luck, guys (and well played Grace for being the youngest).  Here’s hoping some of you make it to the final consideration.  After all, the Lindgren is the largest monetary award a children’s writer or illustrator can win.
  • It was a good week for finalists of all sorts, actually.  The National Book Award finalists were released last week and included Paolo Bacigalupi’s Ship Breaker, Kathryn Erskine’s Mockingbird, Laura McNeal’s Dark Water, Walter Dean Myers’ Lockdown, and Rita Williams-Garcia’s One Crazy Summer.  How interesting it is to me that non-fiction didn’t make even a sin

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24. Try a Little Tenderness

Stead, Philip C. A Sick Day for Amos McGee. Illus. by Erin E. Stead.Roaring Brook, 2010. Ages 3-7.

This year’s 2011 Caldecott went to a sweet, whimsical story of kindness. Amos McGee works at the zoo and sets aside time each day for the animals; he would play chess with the elephant, run races with the tortoise, sit with the shy penguin, lend a handkerchief to the rhino, and read to the owl. Then one day Amos gets sick and stays in bed. The lonely animals decide to take action; that afternoon they make their way to Amos’s home. Throughout the book, Erin Stead’s pencil and woodblock illustrations sprinkle humorous details guaranteed to make readers smile. My favorite is the double spread showing the animals riding the bus, while others will be charmed by the last illustration, showing the quiet penguin gazing at the moon while the others snooze away after a busy afternoon taking care of their friend.

Looking for more kindness? For ages 4-7, try last year’s Caldecott winner, The Lion and the Mouse, illustrated by Jerry Pinkney, and, for Valentine’s Day, reach for Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch, by Eileen Spinelli. For older children, consider Tale of the Mandarin Ducks by Katherine Paterson and the Cinderella variations that focus on the protagonist’s kindness:  The Talking Eggs by Robert San Souci, Papa Gatto by Ruth Sanderson, and Gift of the Crocodile: A Cinderella Story by Judy Sierra. Also, see my December 27th post on being kind to animals.

What are your favorite children’s books featuring kindness? Please leave a comment!

Filed under: Caldecott Award, Picture Books Tagged: 2010 Caldecott, 2011 Caldecott, Eileen Spinelli, Jerry Pinkney, Katherine Paterson, Robert D. San Souci, Ruth Sanderson 2 Comments on Try a Little Tenderness, last added: 1/20/2011
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25. Librarian Preview: Little Brown and Company (Fall 2011 – Winter 2012)

Previews, previews!  Lovely little previews!

And we find ourselves back at the Yale Club, across the street from Grand Central Station, and a whopping 10 minutes away, on foot, from my library.  There are advantages to living on a tiny island, I tell ya.

As per usual, Little Brown pulled out all the stops for the average children’s and YA librarian, in order to showcase their upcoming season.  There were white tablecloths and sandwiches consisting of brie and ham and apples.  The strange result of these previews is that I now seem to be under the mistaken understanding that Little Brown’s offices are located at the Yale Club.  They aren’t.  That would make no sense.  But that’s how my mind looks at things. When I am 95 and senile I will insist that this was the case.  Be warned.

A single day after my return from overseas I was able to feast my eyes on the feet of Victoria Stapleton (the Director of School and Library Marketing), bedecked in red sparkly shoes.  I would have taken a picture but my camera got busted in Bologna.  I was also slightly jet lagged, but was so grateful for the free water on the table (Europe, I love you, but you have to learn the wonders of ample FREE water) that it didn’t even matter.  Megan Tingley, fearless leader/publisher, began the festivities with a memory that involved a child’s story called “The Day I Wanted to Punch Daddy In the Face”.  Sounds like a companion piece to The Day Leo Said “I Hate You”, does it not?

But enough of that.  You didn’t come here for the name dropping.  You can for the books that are so ludicrously far away in terms of publication (some of these are January/February/March 2012 releases) that you just can’t resist giving them a peek.  To that end, the following:

Liza Baker

At these previews, each editor moves from table to table of librarians, hawking their wares.  In the case of the fabulous Ms. Baker (I tried to come up with a “Baker Street Irregulars” pun but it just wasn’t coming to me) the list could start with no one else but Nancy Tafuri.  Tafuri’s often a preschool storytime staple for me, all thanks to her Spots, Feathers and Curly Tails.  There’s a consistency to her work that a librarian can appreciate.  She’s also apparently the newest Little Brown “get”.  With a Caldecott Honor to her name (Have You Seen My Duckling?) the newest addition is All Kinds of Kisses.  It’s pretty cute.  Each animals gets kisses from parent to child with the animal sound accompanying.  You know what that means?  We’re in readaloud territory here, people.  There’s also a little bug or critter on each page that is identified on the copyright page for parents who have inquisitive children.

Next up, a treat for all you Grace Lin fans out there.  If you loved Year of the Dog and Year of the Rat then you’ll probably be pleased as punch to hear that there’s a third

7 Comments on Librarian Preview: Little Brown and Company (Fall 2011 – Winter 2012), last added: 4/25/2011
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