Fusenews: Embarrassing Photo Edition
Time to catch up on ye olde blog reading. Let’s see what the other people have been talking about these days. Ah! Here’s a good one to start with. Over at Disco Mermaids YA author Jay Asher of the hit novel Thirteen Reasons Why has thrown down the gauntlet in the face of his fellow teen writers. "Go dig out your remaining senior photos. If you were just so popular in high school that you don’t have any leftovers, go scan the photo in your yearbook. And then post it on your blog! Come back to this post and leave a comment, directing us to your blog, so we can all laugh at…I mean, admire…how much you haven’t changed. (If you write for younger children, or are an illustrator, or blog in any way about books for children or teens, you should play along, too!)" Oh, this is choice. You guys have to help Jay out on this one, if only to look at his own senior photos. I don’t have a scanner so you’ll have to forgive the fuzziness. So, that lady on the right? Yeah. That’s me that is. I was that. Lord love a duck, I was not cool but I sure did have a lot of hair. Particularly between the old eyebrows.
While searching the web for reviews of Wonder Bear, I stumbled across a blog called Every Day Is Like Wednesday (a reference to the fact that comic books are shipped out to comic book stores on that day of the week). Though mentions of children’s literature are relatively few and far between, this is a lovely example of a blog with a good "voice". At the moment the creator has been writing comics of various superheroes endorsing one presidential candidate or another. If you feel like indulging in a little comic book humor in your daily blog reading, this one’s got my vote.
This will come as primarily interesting to New Yorkers, but anyone who has ever visited the city may enjoy it as well. Now author/illustrator Christoph Niemann has written two picture books and his most recent one The Pet Dragon is coming out this fall (if I’m not too much mistaken). And a couple months ago he created a magnificent piece in The New York Times on how obsessed his kids are with the New York subway system called The Boys and the Subway. Last week he followed that piece up with another called New York Cheat Sheets. It’s a series of drawn Post-its showing the tips and tricks of the town. The image included here is something I can personally attest to. For some reason New York is full of mirrors and shiny surfaces, ideal for primping and perfecting. That Niemann man knows his stuff. Thanks to Swiss Miss for the link.
Sheesh. I stop reading Oz and Ends for a week or two and suddenly there’s a whole plethora of cool posts up. In one Bell makes an oblique reference to the recent child_lit discussion of how the moon is portrayed in picture books. In Astronomy as a Moral Issue he includes links to sites that discuss accurate and inaccurate portrayals. Then in The Clerical Strain in British Children’s Literature Bell lists many a British religious personage who wrote for children (C.S. Lewis, George McDonald, W.V. Awdry, etc.) but is unable to think of any American equivalents. A good point that. Finally, in "More Powerful than England?" Bell addresses an odd trend in contemporary British literature that I’ve noticed too. He calls it, "Recent British Fantasy Novels for Children that Display an Interesting Ambivalent Attitude toward the United States. (Previous examples include Stroud’s Bartimaeus trilogy, Corder’s Lionboy books, and Reeve’s Larklight and Hungry City Chronicles.)" and now Gideon the Cutpurse (or whatever name they happen to give it).
Promotion through coloring books? There have been worse ideas in the world. According to this Flickr page (of all things), "25 international artists introduce themselves to you in self portrait form– 150 coloring books will be sold, so 150 lucky individuals will have the chance to collaborate with the 25 artists themselves. Wanna join in the fun?" Makes me wish I had that kind of talent. Looks amusing. Thanks to Children’s Illustration for the link.
Collecting Children’s Books: Where Amazing Happens. Regularly. Peter writes a magnificent encapsulation of the National Book Awards and the books for youth that have garnered honors and awards over the years. I guaran-damn-tee you that there will be a minimum of five facts you did not know in that piece. And while I’m directing your attention over yonder, there was a previous Sunday brunch discussing a first edition Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and its unfortunate run in with a peach also makes for wonderful (if very sad) reading.
Bookninja has recently been holding a contest where readers are urged to take famous works of literature and reinterpret them using contemporary popular book jacket techniques. The results often will include things like turning Cormac McCarthy’s The Road into a title on parenting. None were particularly kidlitlike, however, until this appearance of Waiting for Godot.
What is the human obsession with the tiny? I know not. In any case, if you’ve ever had a hankering for finding a doll house you might actually want to live in, seek no further than these doll houses and living rooms as created by one Kathy Osborne.
Thanks to Children’s Illustration for the link!
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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