Follow This Blog: RSS feed
A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fusenews: My Vote for #3 = Al Capone Does My Nails

  • Good old Kalamazoo.  Land of my birth.  Home of my gawky adolescence.  Aside from the fact that I was born in such a Seussian named city, K-zoo related news articles are few and far between to say the least (except for that whole all-the-kids-get-free-college thing).  So I was thrilled to death to see that the Kalamazoo Gazette had done an article called Young Readers Help Pick Caldecott Books.  The piece is primarily about Allegan first grade teacher Ed Spicer who is on this year’s Caldecott committee.  Way to go, Ed!  The piece also has very interesting thoughts on the current contenders too.  " ‘One of the youngsters’ most popular choices is Kevin Henkes’ ‘Old Bear,’ Spicer said. ‘I have a kind of bias toward my student group, so that one will automatically make it in to the mock Caldecott.” Kurt Cyrus’ ‘Tadpole Rex” has also been popular’."  As I am a fan of both Old Bear (note to self: review it) and Tadpole Rex, I approve entirely.  Many thanks to 100 Scope Notes for the link!

  • There’s a great piece over at The Brown Bookshelf that talks about something nobody really brings up: filmed book adaptations of children’s and YA novels that feature African-American kids.  Called We Have Options Too, Carla Sarratt comes up with a really stellar list of titles that would translate beautifully from page to screen.  There’s certainly a market for these (and did you see that magnificent cover for Like Sisters on the Homefront?) should Hollywood go all sensible on us and start buying up the rights.  Tyrell would rake, I mean rake, in the dough.  Seriously, L.A.  Think outside the white middle class teen box for once.

  • Inside Scoop Alert: This just in!  From wonderful reader Sharon Haupt I just heard the news.  A new Gennifer Choldenko book that’s a sequel to Al Capone Does My Shirts?  You better believe it:

"I wanted to let you know that I just got home from the CA School Library Assoc. conference. As a member of the CA Young Reader Medal Committee I got to chat, sit next to and entertain Gennifer Choldenko. What a wonderful, humble, charming human being – and she spent so much time helping our student introducer feel really special. It was truly a wonder to behold!  Anyway, she let slip (accidently…on purpose…) that the next Al Capone book title is Al Capone Does My Shoes AND that it’s going to be a triology…yep, there’s going to be a third book in the series!  In her speech at the banquet, she said there were so many interesting tidbits and stories about the kids and their lives on the island that she couldn’t put it all into one book – aren’t we lucky!"

We are lucky. Lucky indeed.

Bored?  Care for a game of Ninja Cowboy Bear?  Google it sometime.  Better yet, Google Image it.  Thanks to Teacher Ninja for the link.

J.L. Bell has written a great round-up of why the Minx graphic novel imprint died a 2-year death.  I had my own suspicions not mentioned in the piece.  I mean, just a handful of women creating the books seemed a bit off-putting, to say the least.  It’s all for girls but women aren’t writing them?  Anytime you start an imprint for lasses and you don’t think to include a Hope Larson, a Raina Telgemeier, a Sara Varon, or an Allison Bechdel, something is seriously not right.  I wonder now if any overtures were even made.

  • I should probably be creative and reword this link’s description, but it’s tough when you have bloggers like Bookninja who know exactly how to describe such articles.  From Bookninja then: " Is it more important for your kids to be literate in text or film/media? The future (the present?) is one where anyone can make moving images that engage culture and mass audiences, and the level of professionalism necessary to reach the world with art or media is changing forever. Ouch. This one is going to hurt, people."

  • Note to self: Tell Angus at Hyperion to send me Food Hates You Too by Robert Weinstock in 2009.

  • Now that the Winter Book Blog Tour is all said and done, I’ll just pluck one out of the pile to direct your attention to.  The blog bloggers are all slowly coming to love D.M. Cornish and his Monster Blood Tattoo books.  This is a good thing.  Whenever I can I find myself placing his titles in the hands of friends, family, and foes.  And Finding Wonderland just happened to have an interview with the man himself.  If you remain one of the poor sad souls who have still not read these books, take a gander at this interview and then find yourself a title right quick.  And don’t let the gory title get you.  These books are some of the best fantasy I’ve seen in years.

  • Daily Image:

Because you never know when someone might need some help.

On the surface they are shirts that show you how to wear a kimono or how to wear a sari.  In practice, they remind me of children’s books that inform in much the same way.  Particularly the instructional section at the end of Rickshaw Girl by Mitali Perkins.  Thanks to BB-Blog for the link!

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. I think the Bell piece is worrying since more and more publishers (and writers) are turning to GNs. (I have two myself in the pipeline–FOILED with First/Second and LAST DRAGON with DarkHorse.) And many of them are far more literary and wordier–more Gaimanesque to coin a phrase–than manga or comics. So I wonder if the Minx failure of placement might signal an unease with the format on the part of Big Box stores.If so, it will be major.

  2. teacherninja says:

    Thanks for the link!

  3. I have doubts about the “not enough women” theory of Minx’s failure because my own favorites from the first four titles were all-male productions. Of course, I’m male myself.

  4. Have you read I Went to a Party in Kalamazoo? You can be from anywhere and it’s still cute …

  5. So . . . what would the third book in the Choldenko trilogy be? Al Capone Does My . . . Pants?

  6. Glad you led with Kalamazoo or I might have missed the post. It’s my hometown too so caught my eye.

    Thanks for the link to The Brown Book Shelf – fodder for my next teen book club: which titles could work well as movies and casting them. We talked about it a bit with Monster but not on any of the others we’ve read.