Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Book Expo

BookExpo America
Book Expo America is a joint production of the American Booksellers Association, the Association of Authors' Representatives, and the Association of American Publishers. Luckily those nice people invite librarians to join their party!  In two days, I got to meet and/or hear an amazing array of children's authors.  My list of luminaries included Brian Selznick, Chris van Allsburg, William Joyce, Katherine Paterson, Sarah Dessen, Kevin Henkes, Jon Scieszka, Jarrett Krosoczka, Jack Gantos, Eoin Colfer, Mac Barnett,  Matt Phelan, Mo Willems, David Lubar, Nick Bruel, Gordon Korman, Bruce Lansky, Harry Bliss, Ridley Pearson, Carmen Deedy, N. D. Wilson, Temple Grandin, Barry Moser, Jan Brett, and even Julianne Moore.

Although I'm usually not happy about celebrities writing children's books, Julianne Moore, author of the Freckleface Strawberry series, won me over talking about her girlhood reading.  She said, "I remember the day I was in the kitchen with my mother and she told me I was old enough to appreciate Louisa May Alcott.  After Little Women, I read ALL the Alcott books, including Rose in Bloom and Jack and Jill.  Anyone else remember those books?"  My eleven-year-old self responded, "I do! I do!"  My parents have a great picture of me at Christmas buried in my boxed set of Alcott while others busily open presents around me.

My acceptance of Moore grew when Brian Selznick presented an illustrated tribute to her and Freckleface!  If she's BFFs with Brian, she must be OK.

As to the rest of the list, if you are not familiar with all of those authors, I will be featuring their books in upcoming blog posts.  If you ever get the chance to go to Book Expo, say yes!--Lucinda Whitehurst

Monday, May 9, 2011

Spring Picture Books

Before spring passes quickly into summer, take a look at two new springtime picture books.  In Like a Lion Out Like a Lamb (Holiday House, 2011) teams Newbery Honor winner Marion Dane Bauer with Caldecott Medal winner Emily Arnold McCully for a romp in which the roaring lion is lulled to sleep when it is time for the gentle lamb.  Spring is Here (Holiday House, 2011) by Will Hillenbrand is a celebration of friendship as the mole wakes his friend Bear so that they can enjoy spring together—Wilma Snyder. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

For Alex Rider fans--Try Steel Trapp

Scorpia Rising, the final entry in Anthony Horowitz’s Alex Rider series, hit stores last month.  If you have finished that series and are ready for a new one, check out Steel Trapp by Ridley Pearson.  Book one The Challenge was published in 2008, followed by The Academy in 2010.  Hopefully Steel’s adventures are just getting started. 
The Challenge begins with Steel and his mother on a train heading to Washington,   D. C., for a science project competition.  Steel tries to do a good deed when he notices a woman leaving the train without her briefcase.  No, the briefcase does not explode, but its contents do ignite complications for Steel.  Soon the woman, a dangerous gang leader, and U. S. Marshals all are looking for Steel and the mysterious briefcase.  On the trip, Steel finds an ally in Kaileigh, a girl who was supposed to be part of the science competition until her project was stolen.  Fast-paced and full of twists, Steel’s story will keep readers engaged until the last breathless page—Lucinda Whitehurst.  (Fiction, grades 4-8; Disney Editions, 2008)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Children's Choice Awards

The Children's Choice Book Awards were announced last night!  See list below.  For more information, go to http://www.cbcbooks.org/news/102

Don't miss host Jarrett Krosoczka's face as "Snookie" (aka Jon Scieszka) makes a special appearance at the Awards Gala http://blog.schoollibraryjournal.com/afuse8production/2011/05/03/the-childrens-book-council-2011-awards/

Author of the Year
Rick Riordan for The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, Book 1) (Disney-Hyperion)
Illustrator of the Year
David Wiesner for Art & Max (Clarion/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)                                                                          

Kindergarten to Second Grade Book of the Year
Little Pink Pup by Johanna Kerby (Putnam/Penguin)                                                
Third Grade to Fourth Grade Book of the Year
Lunch Lady and the Summer Camp Shakedown by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Knopf/Random House)  

Fifth Grade to Sixth Grade Book of the Year
The Red Pyramid (The Kane Chronicles, Book 1) by Rick Riordan (Disney-Hyperion)
Teen Choice Book of the Year
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan (Dutton/Penguin)