Thursday, March 31, 2011

New Books!

I received two shipments of books this week, the usual one from Junior Library Guild and a big one from Follett. Lots of great stuff that I'm excited about, like the 2011 Newbery winner Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool, Artemis Fowl: The Graphic Novel, and Room 4 favorite Heck; Where the Bad Kids Go by Dale Basye. If you want to see all the new books that have come in to the library, go to the catalog and click on the 'What's New' icon in the Explore window. The glitch has been fixed and it will now show you what's actually new. Also, you can put holds on books through the catalog again and leave reviews as that was part of the same glitch that got fixed. While you are at it, check out what's popular at Marshall Lane and I've broken down the award winners link into the individual awards so that list is no longer so daunting. You may have also noticed that I added a 'Graphic Novels' icon. I plan to add some more genre icons and put them all under the 'Explore' button - someday when I have a little extra time. Meanwhile, here's a picture of Roxy, my poodle, taken using the Hipstomatic app on my iphone:

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Here I am at Hicklebee's again

I am so glad that I subscribe to the Hicklebee's newsletter so I can have the opportunity to see such fabulous authors as Jon Scieszka and Lois Lowry.

Lois Lowry may be best known for her book The Giver but she has written many, many other wonderful books, like her new one, for instance. Bless This Mouse about some mice that live in a church. Or a recent one titled The Willoughbys. There are many types of parents depicted in children's literature; good ones, average ones who have problems, horrible ones, and dead ones. In The Willoughbys, the parents start out as the horrible kind but then wind up the dead kind. Here is Ms. Lowry reading from The Willoughbys:

Ms. Lowry was illustrating how she tries to introduce the character and their problem on the first page of the book in order to hook the reader. Well, she hooked me! I got right on my iPhone and bought the audio book! Of course, I also bought a copy of Bless This Mouse and Ms. Lowry kindly signed it and let me take a picture with her.

In closing, I'd like to share with you something I overheard in the library today. A second grade girl was talking to her friend, she said "I'm so glad we have a library." Her friend agreed. Then she elaborated. "If we didn't have a library at this school, I would die! I'm serious, I would die."
Word, little girl. Word.

Monday, March 21, 2011

The votes are in!

All participating classes finished voting last week and Martina the Beautiful Cockroach; a Cuban Folktale retold by Carmen Agra Deedy, illustrated by Michael Austin has been chosen as Marshall Lane's favorite CYRM nominated book.  All the votes have been tabulated and are on their way to CYRM committee.  When statewide voting is finished, we'll find out which book will get the medal.  Go here for more information about the California Young Readers Medal and to see past winners and next year's nominees.  Congratulations Martina and good luck!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I stole this comic from the Book List website

I've mentioned on this blog before that I've been reading - and enjoying - graphic novels now that I'm 45.  And while graphic novels are gaining more acceptance as legitimate literature, some folks still think of them as comic books written for children.  But even comic books written for children have improved in variety and quality.  So when I saw this little comic strip it made me chuckle and I had to share it.  I think if you click on it, it might get bigger or it will open in another window and you can zoom in on it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Children's authors are so much more accessible than rock stars

I must confess. I have not read Spaceheadz yet. But I plan to as soon I finish writing this. I went to Hicklebee's today to see Jon Scieszka, the author of Spaceheadz, as well as other fine works such as The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, Robot Zot, and The Time Warp Trio series. Mr. Scieszka also served as the nation's first Ambassador for Young People's Literature and is the driving force behind the Guys Read project. He is also responsible for the The Exquisite Corpse project, of which I wrote a few months ago on this very blog.

Mr. Scieszka paid a visit to Hicklebee's to promote the second book in the Spaceheadz series. The Earth has been invaded by three aliens who have disguised themselves as a fifth grade boy, a fifth grade girl, and a fifth grade class hamster. Everything the aliens know about Earth, they learned from watching TV advertisements. They've come to Earth seeking Charmin, a material which is strong and soft and pleases large bears. Mr. Scieszka brought along his daughter, Casey, who is herself a writer, and her illustrator friend Steven Weinberg. They also have a book they are promoting called To Timbuktu: Nine Countries, Two People and One True Story, which is a book for teens. Mr. Scieszka was very funny and had a terrific audience of elementary school aged kids who were expert spaceheadz. Casey and Steven also run the Spaceheadz website where kids can become SPHDZ and save the world.

Hicklebee's was a great place to see Jon Scieszka, world class author. It's a small store and I thought it would be packed to the gills but the crowd was not that large. I didn't have to wait long to get my books signed (come visit them in the library on Monday!) and I got to chat a bit and have my picture taken with the authors (which will be added to my author wall).

Last time I had a rock star sign a record for me, I had to stand in line for 6 hours, I could only get one thing signed and was not allowed to take pictures and there was no chatting. Children's authors are my new rock stars.