Fusenews: But What Would Waldo Twittr You About? “No, I’m not there.” “Not there either.”
- The panelists are rapidly being announced over at that thar Cybils blog. If you signed up for a committee and want to know if you made it, check ’em out daily.
- A New Yorker’s usual route onto or off of the subway requires dodging those folks hired to hand out copies of the city’s various free publications. I would have passed on this paper as well had it not had a gigantic image of Waldo of "Where Is?" fame. Apparently Where’s Waldo turns 21 this year (feel old, yet?) and Candlewick is celebrating by giving the stripey dude a Facebook page, MySpace pace, Twittr account, and online photo hunt. The article Where’s Waldo? He’s Growing Up discusses how Waldo’s marketing team is targeting 20-somethings and also releasing Waldo’s The Ultimate Travel Collection. The article include a list of other children’s literary icons getting older this year. You know, Waldo and Carmen Sandiego should really team up someday. Seems that they spend half their time hiding in crowds and around the world anyway.
- Well, I’ll be damned. Lloyd Alexander and Hans Christian Andersen really do share some surface similarities about the old noggin. Lloyd still comes off as the looker of the two, though. This and a whopping 49 other deeply fascinating observations available, as ever, at Collecting Children’s Books. Makes my Fusenews look like a pile o’ poo, it does.
- Good for Gopnik. I’ve never liked the allegory that says that Babar has to mean naked elephants = African natives. Now his piece Freeing the Elephants: What Babar Brought in The New Yorker says as much. Thanks go Big A little a for the link.
Fabulous news for you design addicts out there. A new Jim Flora collection called The Sweetly Diabolic Art of Jim Flora looks good to go from Fantagraphics in September of 2009. See the Jim Flora blog for more info.
Fun game time. Are you read to play Good News/Bad News? Of course you are. Okay, so here’s the good news: They’re turning Eoin Colfer’s Airman into a movie. Yay! Fun book turned into fun film! Happiness all around. Now the bad news: From The Hollywood Reporter we now know that, "Gil Kenan and Robert Zemeckis, who teamed for the ani Oscar-nominated ‘Monster House,’ are partnering again for a big-screen version of ‘Airman,’ a children’s adventure book by ‘Artemis Fowl’ author Eoin Colfer. Kenan will direct the adaptation, which will be done using performance-capture technology." Yes, we are looking at a film that will contain all the lifeless horror of the filmed version of The Polar Express . . . . for no apparent reason. This book would have made the most amazing live-action film. It would have been The Rocketeer (which I liked, gol durn it) redux with cool pseudo-steampunk imagery and swordfights and . . . . and . . . and . . . DANG IT! I can’t wait till I move to L.A. and get to do some serious butt-kicking so as to knock some sense into these numbskulls. Growl, gurgle, gurgle, growl . . . Thanks to Dan Santat for the link.
- Friend of mine from college asks me if I’ve heard of a book she read as a youth. I get this a lot so I try to find said book for her (a dragon marries a fairy?). I fail, but she manages to locate it on her own. Funny thing is, it’s a picture book from her youth written by Walter Dean Myers. Huh! I am more than a little surprised, I admit. Then she finds this description of the book on the Educational Paperback Association’s profile of Myers. I thought I knew my way around controversial picture books, but clearly I missed this particular brouhaha. Here’s what the site says:
In 1972, Myers published The Dragon Takes a Wife, a picture book that is often considered his most controversial book. The story features Harry, a lonely dragon who cannot fight, and Mabel May, the African American fairy who helps him. In order to acquire a wife, Harry must defeat a knight in battle. When Mabel May turns into a dragon to show Harry how to fight, Harry falls in love with her, defeats the knight, and wins her hand (not to mention a good job at the post office). Myers received mixed reviews for The Dragon Takes a Wife. A critic in Kirkus Reviews called it "pointless intercultural hocus-pocus," while Nancy Griffin of the New York Times Book Review praised it as "the funniest, most-up-to-the-minute fairy tale of 1972." Some readers were angered by the fact that Mabel May was black and spoke in hip lingo; they were also concerned that this character appeared in a fairy tale for young children. The Dragon Takes a Wife was banned by some libraries; Myers also received hate mail from disgruntled adult readers of the book.
Thanks to Merritt for the link.
- Daily Image:
The Kidlitosphere bloggers are meeting in Portland, Oregon this month (I got my shirt in the mail, so I’m set) but something else has been happening in that neck of the woods; Filming for Neil Gaiman’s Coraline. Here are two things you can do with this film. You can either view the groovy pictures from it here that look like this . . .
. . . . or you can watch a video of John Hodgman (a.k.a. the only pseudo-celebrity outside of the children’s literary world to ever link to my blog) who provides the voice of the dad in the film and is in this somewhat disturbing interview about his latest book. Who knew that our sanity hangs by such a delicate thread? Thanks to Educating Alice for the first link and Bookninja for the second.
Filed under: Fusenews
About Betsy Bird
Betsy 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.
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