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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fusenews: “Think Old Testament Noel Coward”

All right.  Enough with Italy and all that.  Let’s get back into the swing of things here.  I feel like Fusenewsing it up and ain’t nuthin’ but nuthin’ gonna stop me.  And trust me, there were a couple things I missed while I was gone.  Like, say, April Fool’s Day.  Remember that this time last year I was doing the countdown of the Top 100 Children’s Novels Poll.  On April Fool’s Day I announced that one of the top ten was a book of ill-repute which led to much rending of garments.  This year I did nothing.  Fortunately, Teacher Ninja was there to pick up the slack.  And, to my very great pride, I was the source of the fooling.  Thanks, Jim!!  I know it was an April Fool’s Joke, but it’s a darn tempting idea.  And, as with every year, there’s always a really worth April Fool’s post over at Collecting Children’s Books.  It’s good, though there will always be a soft spot in my soul for Graveyard Book to be Stripped of Newbery? and Ramona Faces “Twenty-First Century Topic” in Latest Book.

  • Matt has a comic book-related round-up of how our vacation went.  Makes it fairly clear to me that Dr. Doom does NOT know how to party.
  • See, I start the post off by talking about how I’m done discussing my vacation and then follow it up with at least three bullet points that make it clear what a liar I am.  Such is life.  This next link is kind of odd.  Remember when I mentioned that I was staying with friends in Barcelona recently?  Well, David Baldeón, the world famous comic book artist, was our host.  David is working on Marvel’s Zombie Christmas Carol and Matt and I got a sneak peek of some of the art.  Now you can get a sneak peek of that same art over at Publishers Weekly.  What’s weird about that?  Well, nothing except that I’m almost 100% certain that the last three color panels were NOT done by David but by another artist.  Compare and contrast for yourself.  You’d have thought PW would have picked up on that fact, eh whot?  I mean even the Scrooges look different.
  • A little early in the Fusenews for a movie update, but this couldn’t wait.  I love Joseph Delaney’s books.  The fact that the casting of his film has gotten this far along bodes very well indeed.  From Cynopsis Kids:

“More casting news, as Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. readies production on its family-targeted supernatural move The Seventh Son , based on Joseph Delaney’s book The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch (US title) by, the first title in his young adult The Wardstone Chronicles series, per Variety .  Deals in the works include Sam Claflin (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) and Alicia Vikander as the two main roles of Tom and Alice.  Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore are also in negotiations for the roles of the specter and the witch, respectively.  The movie will be directed by Sergei Bodrov (Mongol).”

  • In other movie news, here’s a first look at the clockwork man as it will appear in the cinematic adaptation of The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Thanks to Jonathan Auxier for the link.
  • I’ve always liked translators in general, but lately I’ve been feeling particularly rah-rah about them.  They’re amazing!  So maybe that’s why I was so keen on Sarah Blake Johnson’s interview with translator Laura Watkinson over at Through the Tollbooth.  The question about what is involved in translation is particularly interesting.
  • A show of hands.  How many of you are having author Susan Cooper speaking in your library this month?  Anybody?  Oh, my . . . wait . . . is that MY HAND that’s in the air?  Yes indeed it is, and it’s all thanks to the upcoming program Lessons from a Literary Legend: Recalling the Work and Influence of Margaret K. McElderry.  In addition to Ms. Cooper we’ll be hosting Edward Sorel, Emma Dryden, and many others.  Ms. McElderry worked for a time with Ms. Anne Carroll Moore herself in my library, so it is fitting that folks would discuss her here.  Come by, come by!  It’s open to all the public, after all.
  • There is no joy in life so great as discovering a Hark, a Vagrant that is Harry Potter-related.  I’ll admit to also enjoying the Emmy Cicierega HP comics too, though maybe just because of this panel:

  • The SLJ Battle of the Kids’ Books has at last reached its end.  Richard Peck came out with a surprise winner, and I’m just feeling bad that I missed reading that particular book.  Congrats to all those who participated.  It was a pretty darn good year, I must say.
  • I’m always curious when I hear about a book being challenged that I was previously unaware of.  This time the book is Dori Butler and Carol Thompson’s My Mom’s Having a Baby!: A Kid’s Month-by-Month Guide to Pregnancy.  The Hillsborough County Public Library System in Florida declined to remove it from the shelves.  Kudos to them!  And now, looking at it and seeing that Booklist gave it a star, I may wish to consider recommending it for my own library system too.  Thanks to bookshelves of doom for the link.
  • Sometimes it can be hard to name the famous children’s authors and illustrators living in Japan.  Satoshi Kitamura is a familiar name, however.  Recently he spoke with The Guardian about what life in Japan is like at the moment.  An excellent piece.
  • We’ve all encountered literary tours of one sort or another.  Tours where you take a book and visit all the sights within.  Tends to happen a lot to Dickens and such.  This is probably what makes the Turtle in Paradise (by Jennifer Holm) virtual tour of locations in Key West all the more interesting.  How many Newbery Honors get such treatment?  Remarkably few, I’d warrant.

Thanks to Jules for the link!

  • Greg Pincus may well be the hardest working man in children’s poetry/media savvy.  It’s all part and parcel for Greg.  After inventing the Fibonacci poem (for which he was featured in The New York Times), the blog Gotta Book, and the other blog The Happy Accident, Greg now has a Kickstarter project to boot.  Called Poetry: Spread the Word the project is intended to grant Greg the funding to visit 40 schools without them having to pay a cent.  Sounds good to me.
  • Well, I think by this point it’s pretty safe to say that the blog Playing by the book has rightfully earned itself the moniker Best British Children’s Literature Blog.  So sayeth I, for though there are others that I like, this site just pours its heart into each and every post.  Case in point 50+ picture books every child should be read.  Tim Hopgood, James Mayhew, Jan Pieńkowski, Katie Cleminson, Viviane Schwarz and Clara Vulliamy all gave their opinions on the best books for kids, and a fair number of them are available here in the States.  Go!  See!  Check out!
  • Daily Image:

When I am rich and famous and have ample white walls in a huge space, then I will order my serfs to construct me such bookshelves as these:

All the work of Olivier Dollé.  Thanks to mom 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’ve just fallen off my chair! Goodness me! Thankyou *from my heart*. I shall be taking the girls to school with a real spring in my step this morning!

  2. And that subject heading of yours re Noel Coward came from…ahem…where? (Spot on, I say, by the way. I recommend the book highly, but I’m prejudiced, of course:)

    • Elizabeth Bird says

      Oh, I never say where the subject headings come from. But I think you’ve given a good hint with this one.

  3. I recommend My Mom’s Having a Baby. It’s a great way for children to learn about the stages of an unborn baby’s development, which isn’t something that you often find in similar children’s books. There’s a picture of a man and a woman underneath their bed covers on the page that explains how a child is created. It is absolutely specific about reproduction-one of the most specific children’s books out there. It’s presented in a very down-to-earth and loving way. There is nothing titillating about it. Explaining the facts of life is not something you do in one fell swoop-this is a book for families that are ready to get down to the nitty gritty, and want a book that explains reproduction in a loving and positive manner.

  4. ” There’s a picture of a man and a woman underneath their bed covers on the page that explains how a child is created.”

    Wanted to make clear that it’s an illustration.