Fusenews: Playing Killer Possum
Happy Fourth of July, all you happy campers! We’re looking at mostly sunny skies here in NYC, which is a relief after the rainy winter / rainy spring / rainy summer we’ve been having. We are a little sick of the rain. I figure, if you have the weather of Portland, Oregon you should at least get the extra added benefit of getting to see pretty mountains in the distance. No mountain ranges here, sadly.
By the way, if you’re in town, perhaps you’d like to see Jefferson’s hand-written copy of The Declaration of Independence. NYPL will have it on display on the first floor this weekend. It’s in my library, though I haven’t had a chance to see it myself. According to the press release it’s up until August 1st, so there’s still time.
I get some of my news from the child_lit listserv, I admit it. For the most up-to-date discussions of children’s literature, child_lit is the only place to be. Here is one such example. The other day Annette Wannamaker wrote:
"Newsweek has a cover story on ‘What to Read Now.’ As part of it, they have lists of the ‘best books ever’ in various categories (biography, science, true crime, etc.). An ‘expert’ compiles each ‘best ever’ list: Fareed Zakaria, for instance, complied the list of best foreign policy books.
So, who do they get to compile the list of ‘best children’s books ever’?!
No. She wasn’t kidding. So what are Jenna’s top four "best children’s books ever"?
The House on Mango Street (Sandra Cisneros)
Seedfolks (Paul Fleischman)
Brown Angels (Walter Dean Myers)
Love That Dog (Sharon Creech)
Perhaps I’m being a bit contrary in this assessment, but I’m just the tiniest bit skeptical that Jenna came up with this all on her little old lonesome. Aside from that, however, is the issue of whether or not she is the biggest "expert" in the field.
Peter packs in everything from summer books to Michael Jackson in a jaw-dropping post then follows it all up with a compare and contrast of British and American illustrations of Mary Norton’s The Borrowers. Like him, I prefer the fine lines of the Krushes. And I like to think that’s for more reasons than simply liking the style when I was a kid.
I’ll be blunt with you. I get a lot of notices about new marketing techniques, contests, giveaways, etc. etc. etc. Ho to the hum, says I. Show me something new. Well, Mirrorstone has a new idea, and I didn’t even hear it from them directly (so, y’know, extra points there). The pitch? Songwriting. Say they:
Libraries, and kids and teens 8-14 years old, are welcome to enter the Green Dragon lyrics writing contest — and explore the world of dragons. Entrants will write lyrics set to the story of the Green Dragon, and the winning lyrics will then be set to music tied in with A Practical Guide to Dragons and the books in the Dragon Codex series.
And on an unrelated note, did you know that there was an iPhone app where you can hum a tune into your iPhone and it’ll tell you what the song is? I don’t even want an iPhone but I NEED that app. Someone please plug it into noggin ala Feed, please. Thanks to AL Direct for the link.
Only 10 days until the release of Rebecca Stead’s remarkable middle grade novel When Your Reach Me (I know you’ve all been crossing off the days on your calendars like I have). So it’s nice to read her recent interview with School Library Journal in anticipation of the event. I was unaware that Rebecca’s mom was actually on the $20,000 Pyramid. Her winning prize? A case of Panel Magic and another one of Dentyne Gum. Other fact I did not know: Rebecca can do the lotus position. Thanks to Educating Alice for the link.
The other day I mentioned the big time news that Laura Lutz, Queens children’s materials specialist, had suddenly become the Harper Collins School and Library Marketing Manager. Now another big time NYC librarian has had a change in fortune. As reported by LIS News, "Library Journal is delighted to announce that Barbara Genco has been named Editor, Collection Management, effective July 1. Genco brings with her over 25 years in collection development and management at Brooklyn Public Library, NY, with a special focus on creating and managing centralized selection models, value-added vendor relationships, and technical services process reengineering." First Laura and now Barbara. Next thing you know NYPL librarians will start high-tailing it out to L.A. or something equally crazy like, I dunno, swimming the Hudson.
Books I Keep Hearing Buzz About: Dani Noir by Nova Ren Suma. Apparently it’s good to the last drop. I’ve received two stellar recommendations from sources I trust. Fingers crossed that they have it at ALA (it isn’t due out until September).
Author Kami Garcia wrote a post called imho (in my humble opinion) that I’m sure is probably very good. I would know if I read it, but for some reason I just cannot tear my eyes away from the photograph she included with the piece.
Pogo he ain’t.
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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