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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fake Newbery Winners: Create Your Own Title


So I’m reading through the latest issue of School Library Journal, checking out which books got some stars in the back, and I notice something in the middle grade novel section.  Three titles in particular catch my eye: A Nearer Moon by Melanie Crowder Rules for Stealing Stars by Corey Ann Haydu The Seventh Most […]

When Clothing Approximates Sexism (and other woes)


A friend of mine who is not particularly into the children’s literary world, except that she has small children and reads to them, forwarded on to me this recent article in Vox.  It sports the clickbait title I never noticed how racist so many children’s books are until I started reading to my kids.  It’s […]

Kidlit Drink Night Returns! For One Night Only


They said it was dead. They said it was over. They said it would never return again.  But what they didn’t count on was the fact that when I leave a city I doggone LEAVE a city!  Ladies and gentlemen, I have grabbed my jumper cables, attracted a lightning storm of epic proportions, and rejuvenated […]

Review of the Day: Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley


Boats for Papa By Jessixa Bagley Neal Porter Books, Roaring Brook Press (an imprint of Macmillan) $17.99 ISBN: 978-1626720398 Ages 4-7 On shelves now So I’m a snob. A children’s literature snob. I accept this about myself. I do not embrace it, but I can at least acknowledge it and, at times, fight against it […]

Karen Cushman Cover Reveal (are you ready for a fantasy novel?)


You read that right, folks.  Karen Cushman has a new book coming out (hooray!) and it’s not like her books in the past.  Cushman has embraced her fantastical side in her latest title, Grayling’s Song.  Here’s the plot description: “When Grayling’s mother, wise woman Hannah Strong, starts turning into a tree, Hannah sends Grayling to […]

Video Sunday: Living dolls, shark costumes, buried books and goats in pjs

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 4.33.30 PM

As you may have noticed, I’ve not done a Video Sunday in a while.  It now appears that what I was waiting for all this time was Dan Santat’s parody of Serial, turning it into a reenactment of his Caldecott Award call.  I’m just ashamed that when he won it didn’t immediately occur to me […]

Fusenews: [Enter Obligatory Winnie-the-Pooh/James Bond Pun Here]


As the House of Bird prepares for its inevitable move, I find myself rather entranced with my incipient home of Evanston, Illinois.  I’m coming to it with almost no prior knowledge of its existence, and find it to be completely and utterly lovely.  Example A: Check out this Humans of New York-esque photo series on […]

Review of the Day: The Case for Loving by Selina Alko and Sean Qualls


The Case for Loving: The Fight for Interracial Marriage By Selina Alko Illustrated by Sean Qualls Arthur A. Levine Books (an imprint of Scholastic) $18.99 ISBN: 978-0545478533 Ages 4-7 On shelves now. When the Supreme Court ruled on June 26, 2015 that same-sex couples could marry in all fifty states, I found myself, like many […]

Interview with Lynne Jonell: Cats, Rats, and Squishing Machines


Folks, one of the things I love about this job is the fact that I get to watch authors’ careers bloom and blossom.  I see authors starting out or at the beginning of their careers and watch as they garner praise and flourishes throughout the years.  Today’s example is author Lynne Jonell.  Back in 2007 […]

International Migratory Bird Day or Bye Bye, Birdie


Those canny readers amongst you will notice immediately that the date of this post is all wrong.  What am I trying to pull here?  After all, International Migratory Bird Day (as every good schoolchild knows) is always held on the second Saturday in May.  Yet here I am on June 29th, saying unto you that […]

Press Release Fun: Balloons Over Broadway

When Lisa Von Drasek does a program, you bloody well publicize that program. Here she just let me know about these multiple, awesome programs. Well worth noting, folks. People often ask me how could I give up being at Bank Street College of Education to live in Minnesota. The answer is the Kerlan Collection. This […]

Of Ponies and Princesses: An Interview with Kate Beaton


Well, I’m just about as pleased as I can be.  For years I’ve adored and promoted and generally yammered endlessly about webcomic artist Kate Beaton and her Hark, A Vagrant strips.  Whether it was her Nancy Drew covers or her psychedelic take on The Secret Garden (to say nothing of her history strips) she’s one […]

Newbery / Caldecott 2016: Summer Prediction Edition


The Summer Prediction edition of my Caldecott/Newbery ponderings is always a tricky beast.  If the spring edition is looking primarily at books coming out in the spring, summer, and early fall, then the summer edition is looking at almost the entire year. However, at this point I’m still relying more on buzz than the considered […]

We Are the Book Champions, My Friends


Here’s how I blog. I sit around, twiddling my thumbs, waiting waiting waiting for someone else to write something on a topic that has been bubbling and percolating in my noggin.  Then, when they go that extra mile, I STRIKE!  Today’s example: Travis Jonker’s piece Where Do You Fall On The Book Critic/Book Champion Continuum?  […]

Review of the Day: Return to Augie Hobble by Lane Smith


Return to Augie Hobble By Lane Smith Roaring Brook (an imprint of Macmillan) $16.99 ISBN: 978-1-62672-54-1 Ages 9-12 On shelves now Here is what we can say about Lane Smith – he does not go for the easy emotional pass. There are countless author/illustrators out there for whom risk is an unknown concept. The idea […]