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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

The Unlikable Female Character: Thoughts on Middle Grade Literature

WestMoon2

While making the rounds through the old internets I came across a recent New Statesman piece entitled Why I want more unlikeable female characters. The premise pretty much boils down to a desire to see “women who are every type of humanity – assholes and all” in our literature and popular culture.  And while the [...]

African-American Experience Children’s Literary Reference Guide (2010-2015)

JesHappened1

We’re in the thick of the month of February now and recently I ran into an interesting problem.  It being Black History Month and all I was looking to create a list of Black Experience children’s books for my librarians to pull from for displays and purchasing and such.  So I trolled about online looking [...]

2015: The Year of the Spiders and the Flies

Fly

Let’s face facts.  When doing a trendwatch piece, it’s almost impossible to top Travis Jonker’s 2014 bit of brilliance 2014: The Year of the Whale. Prior to that piece I had done The Year of the Chloe, The Year of the Jackalope, and The Year of the Raven.  And now, in 2015, I’m calling it [...]

A 2015 Summer Reading List for Visually Impaired Young Patrons

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It’s not what I would call an overly well known fact but here at New York Public Library we are proud to include the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library amongst our branches.  The site “provides talking books and magazines and braille for people who are blind, visually impaired, or are otherwise physically unable [...]

Cover Reveal: The Latest From Frank Cottrell Boyce

AstoundingBroccoliBoy

I am lucky in my profession.  Lucky not simply because I have a blog where I am offered the chance to reveal the American cover of Frank Cottrell Boyce’s latest book The Astounding Broccoli Boy.  No, I’m lucky because I work in a profession where I even know who Boyce is and how fantastic his [...]

Cover Reveal: Moletown by Torben Kuhlmann

Moletown1

Folks, I make no bones about the books that I love.  And when I saw that jaw-dropping picture book Lindbergh last year in all its high-flying mousie glory, I knew I was looking at something special.  Now I am so pleased and honored to offer you a quickie peek and glance at German author/illustrator Torben [...]

Niblings Announcement: New Niblings Nigh

Niblings

The Niblings (a group consisting of bloggers Travis Jonker of 100 Scope Notes, Jules Danielson of Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast, Philip Nel of Nine Kinds of Pie, and Betsy Bird of A Fuse #8 Production) are pleased to announce two new inclusions into their happy little sphere. To fill the much-needed YA slot, Mitali Perkins joins us. A distinguished [...]

The PreGame/PostGame ALA Youth Media Awards Videos and Some Vids From the Winners As Well

Lori and I after some of the Caldecott announcements.

Hi ho, folks!  And what an exciting morning we had today.  Lori Prince and I had a blast in the SLJ office predicting winners and then discovering how wrong (or occasionally right) we were.  Here’s the PreGame Show, in case you missed it live.  Note how Lori successfully predicts a Newbery combo that was far [...]

Mocks Amuck

newbery_caldecott_logos

Each year I like to keep track of all the Mock Caldecotts, Mock Newberys, Mock Siberts, etc. that I can find.  It’s not easy.  At this point in time it’s not as if ALA or SLJ has created a centralized site where folks can plug in their Mock results for all the world to see [...]

Animated and Opinionated: The SLJ Pre-Game / Post-Game Show Returns!

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Observe the following: SLJ-Pre-game Show dance number: ALA Youth Media Awards 2014 from School Library Journal on Vimeo. If it is not immediately clear, this is a video of me dancing with partner-in-crime Lori Prince to the ALA hold music. More specifically, it’s the music that they play as you wait for the live webcast [...]

The Role of Children’s Literature in Contemporary Cinema

AmazingAmy4

I was watching Gone Girl for the first time with friends the other day because occasionally I like to remember that there are literary adaptations out there of books for people above the legal drinking age.  Mind you, when you’ve a one track mind like my own, every mega-adult hit has a children’s literature connection.  [...]

Morning Mailbag: Trinkets, Treasures, and Apples

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We’re experiencing that time of the year when the mail comes fast and loose and continual. Every day it seems like there’s something interesting to see. So while it lasts, let’s have another round of Morning Mailbag where I highlight some of the more interesting items that have cropped up in my office this week. [...]

Morning Mailbag: Changes, Rarities, and Surprises

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In a given day I dive through gobs of mail.  Boxes of books from publishers for myself, my current co-workers, my former co-workers, this blog, you name it.  And since I pay attention to what’s being buzzed, I notice oddities.  In this new series I’ll show you some of the more interesting fare.  The items [...]

Risky Business: Trying Something New in the 21st Century Children’s Publishing Market

IridescenceBirds

This past Saturday I hosted a Children’s Literary Salon at the main branch of NYPL that discussed the topic of middle grade science fiction for children, its history and future.  Consisting of a panel of editor Andrew Harwell, author Jason Fry (of the “Jupiter Pirates” series), and librarian Stephanie Whelan (who gave a fantastic encapsulation [...]

Merry Christmas to all!

Santa

Merry Christmas!  Or whatever holiday you choose to celebrate.  My week here’s a bit off thanks to the holidays and travels to Kalamazoo (which is to say, Bookbug).  Still, we can’t help but do a happy little holiday post once in a while.  And with that in mind . . . . First off, Rudolph!  [...]