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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Carmen Agra Deedy, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 13 of 13
1. Cover Reveal: And it’s for my own book!!!

Ladies and gentlemen . . . the moment I’ve been waiting for.

Wait! Wait!  Background information first!

So for years I worked as a children’s librarian and I’d get girl after girl after girl coming up to my desk asking for funny books.  I credit some of this to Diary of a Wimpy Kid.  The boys and the girls loved that series and wanted more of the same.  Sometimes they wanted it in a notebook novel format, like Kinney’s book.  Sometimes they just wanted something hilarious, and they seriously didn’t care who wrote it.  So I’d grab books for them and then it slowly began to dawn on me.  Huh.  For all that I could find some pretty fantastic and hilarious books out there for kids, where were the funny story collections written by women?  Turns out, there weren’t any.

Until now.

I would like you to join me in applauding the following authors and author/illustrators . . . .

  • Cece Bell
  • Sophie Blackall
  • Libba Bray
  • Lisa Brown
  • Adrianne Chalepah
  • Alison DeCamp
  • Carmen Agra Deedy
  • Kelly DiPucchio
  • Lisa Graff
  • Shannon Hale
  • Charise Mericle Harper
  • Jenni Holm
  • Akilah Hughes
  • Amy Ignatow
  • Christine Mari Inzer
  • Lenore Look
  • Meghan McCarthy
  • Mitali Perkins
  • Leila Sales
  • Raina Telgemeier
  • Deborah Underwood
  • Ursula Vernon
  • Rita Williams-Garcia
  • Delaney Yeager
  • and Mackenzie Yeager

Each one of these women has contributed to my new book Funny Girl: Funniest. Stories. EVER.

Behold!  The cover by the aforementioned Charise Mericle Harper:


And here’s the full jacket in its entirety:


A portion of the proceeds of this book go to Write Girl, a Los Angeles-based creative writing and mentoring organization that matches girls with women writers who mentor them in creative writing.

When’s it out?  May 9th, 2017!  Feel free to pre-order it.


Oh! And while I’m thinking of it, there’s this other really fun thing that just started that I have to let you know about.  As I may have mentioned before, my husband’s first book The Secrets of Story just came out recently and I could be prouder.  He’s already put up a couple great videos alongside it (the latest is here and is about those little moments of humanity that make you like a character).  But fun upon fun upon fun, he’s created a podcast with YA author and 90-Second Newbery Film Festival creator James Kennedy and it may well be my favorite thing of all time.  I love it when James and Matt get together because they agree on NOTHING!  And now they’ve a podcast together where they can extol the beauty of that nothing together.  It’s huge fun for me, and it ends with a little feature where they mention a story idea they had that they decided wouldn’t work and give it away (as it were) to the masses for use.  So if you like the process of writing or you just like banter, I’ve your new favorite podcast.  The Secrets of Storytelling podcast is available through iTunes.  Subscribe today!


20 Comments on Cover Reveal: And it’s for my own book!!!, last added: 11/13/2016
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2. WaterBridge Outreach Books Selection 2015


Logo: WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water

WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water recently announced the books in English they have selected this year for donation to the different schools and libraries they support around the world.  WaterBridge Outreach is a non-profit that seeks … Continue reading ...

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3. Video Sunday: Itching powder out of rose hips and other Dahlian artifacts

I forget how many years ago it was, but in the not so distant past (I’m going to go out on a limb and say it was 2009) I had the pleasure of hosting children’s author and storyteller Carman Agra Deedy in my Children’s Center.  Talk about a storyteller!  She will hold you riveted from syllable one onwards.  I had no idea that back in 2005 she did a TED talk.  Had I known, I would have posted it long before now.  Here goes:

CarmenAgraDeedy 500x284 Video Sunday: Itching powder out of rose hips and other Dahlian artifacts

Thanks to Aunt Judy for the link.

Clever move, author Sue Fleiss.  One thing I would like to point out about this video before you watch it is that it involved picture book related hand jive.  No easy task.


I’ve decided that the last great children’s literature world to delve into and learn more about has got to be the world of collecting.  I don’t know much of any children’s book collectors and I think they’d be fascinating folks to mingle with.  That in mind, when I heard that Travis Jonker had gotten this Antiques Roadshow clip from John Schumacher it all seemed to click.  I wish I knew what made a children’s book valuable.  I tremble when I think about the titles we handle on a regular basis in my office.

AntiquesMaryPoppins Video Sunday: Itching powder out of rose hips and other Dahlian artifacts

It’s probably no surprise to you to hear that a fair number of folks contact me about including videos of their authors or illustrators on this site.  I don’t always say yes, but I always watch to see if the videos are honestly interesting.  And brother, this brief interview with Fred Bowen is precisely that.  I’ve always been a bit sports allergic myself, so to hear him pinpoint the value of the “culture” as he (rightly) puts it is good for me.



Don’t think I’ll actually embed anything from this site, but it’s worth knowing about in any case.  Storyline Online is is odd little online streaming video program where you can watch various members of the Screen Actors Guild read old children’s books. As of right now the readers include Betty White, Melissa Gilbert, Sean Astin, Elijah Wood, Jason Alexander, Ernest Borgnine, James Earl Jones, Robert Guillaume, Tia & Tamara Mowry, etc.  I have to assume they haven’t done many recently, if only because the books themselves are pretty old.  At any rate, its an interesting smattering.  Thanks to Aunt Judy for the link.

Well.  This is . . . just the more frigging adorable thing.  Check it.

Sort of combines all my favorite things.  Cute kids speaking languages other than English and world-renowned cartoonists we’ve never heard of.  Liniers.  I’ll remember that name now.

In other book trailer news, it’s awful nice when your illustrator not only creates the art for your book but comes up with some catchy song tie-ins as well.  Case in point:

And now some thoughts.
1. There is a Roald Dahl bio by Michael Rosen and it’s not available in the U.S.? This thing cannot be right.
2. The following video is 45 minutes long and rather worth it. This is a vid that was streamed live on Tuesday.
3. Rosen. He doesn’t flub. Not a word, not a syllable. This man is a practiced pro. I would rather like to be him when I grow up.  I wonder if he’s ever done a TED talk . . .
4. If you would like to hear musical performances from shows like Matilda, you can see the Matilda song around 15:30. 19:44 is where you’ll find the backstage peek into the new Charlie and the Chocolate Factory musical.  No live performances there, sadly.

MichaelRosen Video Sunday: Itching powder out of rose hips and other Dahlian artifacts

And for our off-topic video of the day, this would be the video that garnered the most alerts to my attention from family and friends this week.  There are people that say it’s the Gangnam Style of 2013.  Don’t know about that, but it is rather children’s literature friendly (so maybe it’s only 85% off-topic).  Thanks in particular to Kate and Marci for the link.

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2 Comments on Video Sunday: Itching powder out of rose hips and other Dahlian artifacts, last added: 9/16/2013
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4. Storytime: National Library Week

Bats at the Library by Brian Lies Another inky evening’s here- The air is cool and calm and clear. Can it be true? Oh, can it be? Yes! Bat Night at the library! Join the free-for-all fun at the public library with these book-loving bats! Shape shadows on walls, frolic in the water fountain, and …

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5. Welcoming Carmen Agra Deedy to Moonlight Ridge

Welcome to the SCBWI
Springmingle '13 blog tour.

I'm so happy to introduce one of the keynote speakers at the upcoming 2013 Springmingle,
Carmen Agra Deedy 

Children's book author and storyteller Carmen Agra Deedy was born in Havana, Cuba, came to live in the United States as a child, and grew up in Decatur, Georgia. She has won more than a dozen awards for her work, including the 2001 Christopher Award and the 2001 Jane Addams Peace Association Honor Book Award .
1. Carmen, tell us a little about yourself. What made you decide to become a writer?

It wasn’t, in the strictest sense, a decision; I’d be more apt to call it a glorious moment of self-delusion. It lasted just long enough for me to cheerfully stamp, address, and post a manuscript to a regional publisher.

Watching the envelope irretrievably disappear through the Post Office slot, I instantly succumbed to the clammy hands, dry mouth, and heart palpitations that are the plague of presumptuous young writers. What had I done? And why did I do it?

Well, I did it because I had written a little story for my daughters and they thought it might make a fun picture book (pause for eye roll). Had I known how ridiculous the odds were, it’s unlikely I’d have ever submitted my story. To this day I bless Susan Thurman, then editor at Peachtree Publishers, for championing the sweet, but painfully unpolished, manuscript that would become Agatha’s Feather Bed. 

 2. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received as a writer?

During a recent visit to an elementary school in South Carolina, a parent told me she did not care for Martina the Beautiful Cockroach. You expect (and even welcome) this kind of candid remark from children. Adults, however, are generally subtler when registering disapproval.
“Do you, um, hate cockroaches in general?” I asked.
“Nope,” she said, “Just this one.”
Oh, boy.
Then she presented me with a tattered copy of the offending book and explained, “This is my kid’s favorite book. I’ve had to read it every night for the past five months. I can’t even cheat and skip a page because she’s memorized all the words. You know I hate you, right?”
“Ah,” I said, blushing, “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome,” she said.

3. Where, and when, do you write? What are your writing rituals?

Travel and family life make it difficult for me to adhere to a strict writing regimen. I write when I can and where I can. Sometimes it’s in my studio, but often it’s in an airport terminal (when my flight has been delayed, yet again).

When I can wrangle a substantial stretch of time to write, which usually means gong away for a few days––that’s when I get real work down.
My rituals during that time?
Well, I write. Then I sleep. Then I edit. Then I snack. Then I write some more. This is followed by another nap. Then I write. Then I eat. Then I do a little research. After which I might go for a walk. More snacking, followed by more writing. Then I sleep.
Thus ends Day One.
If I’m lucky, I’ll have four or five days of this.

I love this schedule, Carmen!

4. Do you like to read adult fiction? What have you read recently that you enjoyed?

I’m going back and rereading some favorite books. I recently reread Nicholas Basbanes’ wonderful book on libraries, Patience and Fortitude (part of trilogy, and a must-read for book and library lovers). I’m now rereading Prince of Tides, by Pat Conroy. The man is a storytelling genius and master of the heart-shattering phrase.

 5. What is your favorite work of fiction, adult or children's, and why?

A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving, simply because it’s the best book of it’s kind in the world. It’s very nearly the perfect story.

6. Do you have a favorite among the books that you have written? Tell us about it.

I can’t say I do. In any event, having a favorite book is akin to having a favorite child, isn’t it? If you had one, you could never tell.

7. What can you tell us about your story-telling performances? Can we find any of your live performances on the Web? Can you tell us a little about your favorite story?

Only that I love hearing a good story more than almost any other enjoyment I can think of. If I ever tell a good story, it’s because I want others to feel the wonder I’ve experienced repeatedly throughout my life as I’ve met, and listened to, great storytellers.

The only story of mine that I really like on the web is the 2002 National Book Festival presentation at the Library of Congress.
It’s about my favorite book (see question #5).

Well, my NEW favorite story is part of a collection of stories I’ve been telling children for several years now, titled Dill and Corky.
They are loosely based on my own blissfully feral childhood, a childhood that was shared with my best friend, Dill. The latest story, still on the assembly line, is about Dill’s Uncle Stubby, a marginally literate WWII vet who solemnly officiated at a snake funeral. You asked.

This sounds like a delightful story! I look forward to reading this one!

8. Did your parents tell you stories when you were a child?

Both my parents told us stories, but my father is a prolific storyteller with a gift for timing and an uncanny understanding of human nature.

9. What about illustrations for your book? Have you chosen any of your illustrators, or does the publisher do this? Do you have any favorite illustrations that you'd like to tell us about?

I’ve certainly asked to work with certain illustrators, but it’s ultimately in the hands of the publisher to acquiesce or deny such a request. Chocolate helps.

 10. What is the most important thing you feel you can accomplish with your writing?

I would love to one day write a story that a child found so irresistible that he or she (despite the dangers of parental discovery and possible confiscation of said contraband) read this book under the covers with a flashlight.
That would pretty much be the End All for me.

11. We are all looking forward to your Keynote Speaker address at SCBWI Springmingle. Can you tell us about your experience with SCBWI?

Thank you! And I’m looking forward to being with so many talented writers and illustrators––––one of the greatest benefits to a SCBWI membership!

Thanks so much, Carmen.
February 22-24
Atlanta, Georgia


9 Comments on Welcoming Carmen Agra Deedy to Moonlight Ridge, last added: 1/31/2013
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6. Book Review: The Yellow Star, The Legend of King Christian X of Denmark by Carmen Agra Deedy, Illustrated by Henri Sorensen

When Nazi Germany during World War II invaded Denmark. King Christian X defied the order to fly the Nazi flag. This was resistance against a frightening and powerful Germany. King Christian X was the rallying point for his country. He was a wise and brave king.

I'd never heard this story before. I'd heard little about the country of Denmark during World War II.
It made me wonder if more of the European nations had stood up to Hitler and Nazi Germany, what difference it could have made? 
This is a book where more teaching would be needed to the child, explaining about World War II, Holocaust.
It is a large hardcover book.
Every page has watercolor drawings of Danish people on the street, business people, shop owners, children, and animals. There are also war images---this would definitely spark discussion.
At the end of the book is further explanation about Denmark and its stand they took for the Jew's. 

Link @ publisher:
Published 2000 by Peachtree Publishers
32 pages
For ages 8-12

Link for book at Amazon:
Hardcover $12.37

1 Comments on Book Review: The Yellow Star, The Legend of King Christian X of Denmark by Carmen Agra Deedy, Illustrated by Henri Sorensen, last added: 8/3/2012
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7. Storytelling Thursday - Chime by Billingsley

Many storytellers become authors - and sometimes authors become storytellers.  It sort of follows - spoken words, written down; written words, spoken out loud.  Here are the websites of two  storyteller/authors:

Aaron Shepard:  I don't know which came first for Aaron - out loud storytelling or paper telling  - but Aaron has enriched folktale collections for quite a while.  I linked to his storytelling page where he offers some of his own stories to other tellers.  Please read any copyright requirements before taking these stories to the public.   But wait, there's more - more, more, more! - on Aaron's pages, including tips for storytellers, resources for teachers and parents and even Reader's Theater scripts! Thanks so much, Aaron.

This face is made for storytelling

Carmen Agra Deedy!  Her latest book, The Cheshire Cheese Cat, written with Randall Wright and illustrated by Barry Moser, was one of my favorite books of the year.  Carmen started doing commentaries for All Things Considered.  I remember listening to her tell a story about trying to recreate one of her grandmother's dishes - rice pudding - as I drove home from work.  She is a featured teller and speaker at storytelling conferences and literacy related events.  She is a HUGE supporter of libraries, too.

Book Review:!
Chime by Franny Billingsley.  Since I just finished reading this last night, this book did not make my list of favorites..but it certainly IS one of my favorite books of the year.  It was also a hard book to read, because the narrator and main character, has trouble separating her feelings from her story.  Briony's ramblings make the story so diffused that the reader spends a lot of time shoving aside pieces of emotional lint.  But these incomplete memories and moods create an atmosphere of dread.  Don't go back into the Swamp, Briony!  Listen to your dead Stepmother's words, Briony.  DON'T listen to your dead Stepmother's words, Briony.  Watch out for Rose - in more than one way.  Can you trust Rose? Can you trust Eldric?  Can you trust yourself?

In an imagined early 20th century English town, on the edge of the Swamp, 17-year-old Briony lives in the Parsonage with her distant father and her twin sister, Rose.  Rose is "different".  We'd likely say she had high-functioning autism, today.  And Briony knows that Rose's differences are Briony's fault - because her dead Stepmother told her so.  Her dead Stepmother told Briony many things, many awful, sad, confusing things - and promised to protect Briony

1 Comments on Storytelling Thursday - Chime by Billingsley, last added: 12/15/2011
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8. Review: 14 Cows For America

14cows 300x270 Review: 14 Cows For America14 Cows For America by Carmen Agra Deedy and illustrated by Thomas Gonzalez (in collaboration with Wilson Kimeli Naiyomah)

Review by Chris Singer

About the author:

Author Carmen Agra Deedy was born in Havana and immigrated to Georgia with her family during the aftermath of the Cuban Revolution. She has been writing and traveling around the world telling stories for almost twenty years. Her books have received numerous awards and honors. She lives in Georgia. www.carmendeedy.com and www.beautifulmartina.com.

About the illustrator:

Illustrator Thomas Gonzalez, also born in Havana, moved as a child to the United States, where he became friends with Carmen Deedy. An artist and painter, he directed advertising campaigns for such clients as Coca-Cola, Delta Airlines, NASCAR, the NFL, and McDonald’s. Gonzalez lives in Georgia.

About Wilson Kimeli Naiyomah:

Collaborator Wilson Kimel Naiyomah, a native of Kenya, received an MS in molecular biology from Stanford University in 2008. He was awarded a Rotary International World Peace Fellowship and began studies in peace and conflict resolution in Australia in spring 2010.

About the book:

In June of 2002, a very unusual ceremony begins in a far-flung village in western Kenya.
An American diplomat is surrounded by hundreds of Maasai people. A gift is about to be bestowed on the American men, women, and children, and he is there to accept it. The gift is as unsought and unexpected as it is extraordinary.

A mere nine months have passed since the September 11 attacks, and hearts are raw. Tears flow freely from American and Maasai as these legendary warriors offer their gift to a grieving people half a world away.

Word of the gift will travel news wires around the globe. Many will be profoundly touched, but for Americans, this selfless gesture will have deeper meaning still. For a heartsick nation, the gift of fourteen cows emerges from the choking dust and darkness as a soft light of hope and friendship.

My take on the book:

My wife and I lived 40 miles away from the World Trade Center. Like many others, we have both been profoundly affected by this atrocity. While our daughter is too young to be told the story of September 11th, some day she will and the first book I’m going to show her about it will be 14 Cows For America.

This is a beautiful book on so many levels. Not only is it a beautifully illustrated and touching story, but there’s so many wonderful lessons for young readers. It powerfully puts forth the message that all of humanity is one and when one of us suffers through such an atrocity, we all truly suffer as one. We are all brothers and sisters and to see our brothers and sisters of the Massai in Kenya grieve together with all of us is very powerful.

On another level, I appreciate how this book dispels myths many may have about people in Africa. I loved reading Wilson Kimeli Naimoyah’s afterword where he discusses getting a scholarship to come to the U.S. and study medicine. Naimoyah is proof positive that everyone has the potential to be who they want to be. Wilson’s visit back home and the book’s description of the Massai people also shows that just because a culture lives much simpler than us, doesn’t mean they are any less capable of being an intelligent and wonderful people.


1 Comments on Review: 14 Cows For America, last added: 9/11/2011
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9. Review of the Day: The Cheshire Cheese Cat by Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright

The Cheshire Cheese Cat: A Dickens of a Tale
By Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright
Illustrated by Barry Moser
Peachtree Press
ISBN: 978-1-56145-595-9
Ages 7-12
On shelves October 1, 2011

Animal stories. Done well and you get something like Charlotte’s Web or The Incredible Journey. Done poorly and you cannot name for me a more annoying genre. Some days it seems to me that every great children’s author eventually tries their hand at the style to varying degrees of success. Burned one time too many I’ve taken to just avoiding books with animals in them altogether unless there’s something that seems to be extraordinary about them. So when The Cheshire Cheese Cat came into my possession, I was inclined to put it aside. Then a friend and an editor both assured me it was lovely. And then there was the fact that Carman Agra Deedy, author of such great picture books as 14 Cows for America had co-authored it. Finally, it’s not every day that the great Barry Moser illustrates a new work of middle grade fiction. Add in the fact that there’s a Charles Dickens connection and I cracked. I read it. And reader, it was worth the reading. Not that it convinced me to rethink my animals-in-books opinions, but at least I may be a hair more open minded in the future . . . maybe.

The Cheshire Cheese Inn is a place of secrets. It seems that anyone who works or lives there has one. For Skilley the alleycat, his is a shame that has caused him to strike up a deal with the local mouse population that haunt the inn’s famous cheese production room. For Pip, his mouse friend, it has to do with the mysterious creature that lives amongst the mice, insisting on its own freedom. For the cook it’s a secret about the cheese, and for the barmaid the same. Only the famous writer Charles Dickens, a man that patronizes the inn, seems secret free. And yet, he too harbors a difficulty and a shame. It’ll take Skilley’s deal with Pip to set the spark that causes all these secrets to come to light, and it may possibly save the very monarchy of England as well!

As with any book starring the furry, it all comes down to personality. If you don’t believe in the characters then you haven’t anything to connect to. Here, the critters are infinitely interesting. Pip’s oversized vocabulary makes for a nice side element in the tale. If Skilley comes off as a kind of hired muscle, Pip is the brains behind the operation. From his first utterance of words like “sepulcher” and “perpetual internment” you can see that he is a cut above the general mouse population. Interestingly, once Pip start throwing out one hundred dollar words, the book follows suit. I caught words and phrases like “stygian darkness” bandied about without comment. It doesn’t grate, though, and such words and phrases are understandable within context. By the way, I just referred to Skilley as a kind of thug, but in fact there are depths to him. I was particularly fond of a moment when Pip mentions that his family died in a cleaver-related ac

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10. Words and Color: A Lifetime of Discovery

Please join me on July 7th for a wonderful evening with the amazing, Ashley Bryan and Carmen Agra Deedy.

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11. ALSC’s “Kids! @ your library” Campaign.

One of the initiatives of the ALA’s Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) is Kids! @ your library. As part of this campaign ALSC provides free, downloadable artwork for libraries to use in promoting their programs and services to kids and families. ALSC Program Officer, Laura Schulte-Cooper tells me that parents and care-givers are also invited to print off this material to use in their own homes as long as it is for non-commercial uses.

Check out the the original artwork that award-winning children’s book illustrator David Diaz has created for this campaign. The full colour mini-posters and bookmarks are lovely! You can also download clip art adapted from Michael P. White’s illustrations in the book The Library Dragon written by Carmen Agra Deedy. With the winter rain and snow just around the corner, we are always looking for indoor activities to keep us busy and these downloadable craft projects like door hangers and coloring pages should help do the trick.

To keep up to date with all the ALSC happenings check out their blog.

0 Comments on ALSC’s “Kids! @ your library” Campaign. as of 10/29/2009 6:51:00 AM
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12. Louis Sockalexis: Discussion Opportunities

Whether you're a parent, teacher, librarian, or anyone else who enjoys reading books with kids, Louis Sockalexis: Native American Baseball Pioneer is a great book that will inspire discussion.
It can be a short conversation or can be expanded into more in-depth learning activities or lessons. Here are just a few ideas.


  • Discuss the sport and its most prominent figures, past and present
  • Tell your child Jackie Robinson's story who faced similar issues as Louis Sockalexis
  • Compare and contrast the game today to the game back then; in the book, there are many obvious differences, both in the text and illustrations
  • Talk about your favorite team or players
  • If you or your child plays baseball, discuss an important game you or he/she played
Native Americans
  • Talk about the Native American culture, their traditions, and the pride they have in their land and people; why was it important for Louis's father to accept him? What impact did Louis's achievements have on his people?
  • Discuss a Native American tribe in your area if applicable
  • Visit a museum or exhibit that features Native American culture, art, people
  • Talk about other famous Native Americans...in the past and present. How are they portrayed in the textbooks and culture?
Racism and Prejudice
  • Louis was treated poorly because he was a Native American...talk to your child about how he/she felt about this and how they think Louis felt. Talk about his strength and determination.
  • What other groups are victims of racism? Discuss the Civil Rights Movement and the Trail of Tears.
  • Have they witnessed or experienced racism first-hand? Have you?
  • How should you respond when someone makes a racist remark or joke? What should you do if someone is being treated unfairly?
  • What is the difference between racism and prejudice? What groups are victims of prejudice?
Any other ideas?

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13. Louis Sockalexis: Native American Baseball Pioneer

This week's nonfiction choice

Louis Sockalexis: Native American Baseball Pioneer

  • Author: Bill Wise
  • Illustrator: Bill Farnsworth
  • Reading level: Ages 9-12
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Lee & Low Books (March 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1584302690
  • ISBN-13: 978-1584302698

The year is 1897, and Louis Sockalexis, a baseball player for the Cleveland Spiders is in New York getting ready to face Amos Rusie, the major league’s most formidable pitcher. Getting to this point was not an easy road for Louis, a member of the Native American Penobscot tribe in Maine. Confronted with callous racism and his own father’s disapproval, Louis’s passion for baseball prevent him from giving up his dream. Regarded by many as one of the best players in the league, this momentous game will change his life and the public’s view of him forever.

Bill Wise’s account of the first acknowledged Native American major league baseball player is nonfiction but reads like a story. We are taken back to Louis’s childhood when he plays his first baseball game and falls in love with the sport. We watch him grow into a man and a powerhouse slugger, and we witness the insults, the stinging words, and the prejudice he faced every day. As I was reading, I found myself feeling anger towards the people, empathy towards Louis, and great excitement as Louis stood at the plate. The sepia tones of Farnsworth’s illustrations take us back to the time period, but I hardly noticed the pictures as I was reading because I was so involved with the story. Much more than a book about baseball, Louis Sockalexis: Native American Baseball Pioneer is a book about determination, hard work, adversity, and acceptance.

This would be a great pick for a baseball fan or someone who is interested in learning more about famous Native Americans. In addition, it’s a nice book to prompt discussion about prejudice and racism, but I’ll talk more about that tomorrow when discuss reading tips and discussion opportunities.

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