Fusenews: “You have no power over me”
Fast fast, like lightning, fast! It’s a Fusenews round-up of epic quickie proportions!
First up, my buddy Warren Truitt used to work with me in the Central Children’s Room of New York Public Library. Then he moved to Alabama. He’s kept busy, since that time with a long-term personal project. This one man machine is intent on setting up every single child in every single preschool in Lee Col, AL with three books that they can take home as their own. To do that, he has set up a very specific registry. If you want to help him out go to this Amazon wishlist and buy him one or more of the books on this list. This is a straight up good cause with direct results. Make yourself feel good about yourself today.
In other news, I have been mistakenly complimented. Cece Bell, the marvelous creator behind such books as El Deafo and the Rabbit and Robot easy book series wrote a post recently in which she wrote the following:
“After El Deafo came out, … Betsy Bird pointed out that the first book in the series (Rabbit & Robot: The Sleepover) seemed autobiographical to her. (She was right in some ways—I had initially modeled Rabbit on someone else, but while working on the book realized that the high-strung, anxious Rabbit is pretty darn close to me.) Betsy used her crazy-good comp-lit skills and suggested that my personal connection to the book went even further. She pointed out that while Rabbit might represent me (I’m a rabbit in El Deafo, after all), perhaps the problem-solving Robot might represent the Phonic Ear, my clunky hearing aid from elementary school. I think Betsy was right! Robot drives Rabbit crazy but ultimately helps him out; my Phonic Ear drove me crazy, but ultimately helped me out. A lot.)”
She goes on to explain how the newest book in the series follows in this vein, though she didn’t intend it to do so. Now, you know me. I’m vanity incarnate. I like taking credit for things, but this? I can’t take credit for this. In point of fact it was my genius husband who actually came up with the Rabbit & Robot = El Deafo connection. So I thank you, Cece, but in truth it is Matt Bird who deserves this honor. I am but his humble vessel, parlaying his theories into the universe.
Seems like every day we’re getting more and more information about the upcoming Wrinkle in Time movie. It’s being directed by Ava DuVernay. This is good. Oprah will star in some capacity. Let the Oprah as winged centaur fan art begin! Still good news. Mindy Kaling and Reese Witherspoon may be involved somehow. Better and better. And lastly, Storm Reid (seen here) will be Meg. Perfect! Right age and everything. BUT, and this is a big but, there is still one way they can mess everything up. MEG. MUST. WEAR. GLASSES. If Meg is not wearing glasses in this movie then I am checking out. Harriet the Spy didn’t wear glasses in that Rosie O’Donnell film and Meg didn’t wear glasses the last time they filmed this. Team Glasses, that’s me. Let’s see what happens. Thanks to Laurie Gwen Shapiro for the link.
Anyone else notice that there’s been a distinct increase in the number of articles praising translated books for kids and asking for more out there? Bookriot just came out with 100 Great Translated Kids Books From Around the World. I am not familiar with this M. Lynx Qualey but this is top notch writing. Hooray, #WorldKidLit Month!
New Blog Alert: In my travels I just found a new blog via a recent New York Times Book Review. New to me anyway. Apparently this woman’s been doing this since 2012. Meet Catherine Hong. She works on magazines. She blogs at www.mrslittle.com. And she writes on interesting topics with interesting titles. Here’s a smattering of what I mean:
- New York Fashion Week meets Moomin
- Best Dressed: Sylvester’s mother
- Wes Anderson Probably Read This Book
- Double Fudge: A Novel for Adults
- Quite Possibly the Coolest Author Photo to Have Ever Appeared in a Kids’ Book
Read that last one if nothing else. This is my kind of woman (to quote Animal from The Muppet Show)!
The National Book Award longlists were announced this week, people! And guess what? There’s a nice equal smattering of YA and children’s literature on the list. Hooray! Some years it’s all YA with just one children’s book squeezing in there. This year there are SIX children’s books, just slightly tipping in favor of younger readers. I’ve read five of them. See if you can guess which one I haven’t read. It’s not as obvious as you might think.
And now, your daily reminder that David Foster Wallace once taught Mac Barnett. I will repeat. The author of Infinite Jest taught the author of Extra Yarn. I’m just going to sit and process that for a while. Carry on.
Hey! Look over there! At the Horn Book Podcast (I listen to all the episodes – I’m such a junkie) Jules Danielson was on and she said many smart things. Many! Go listen to her and feel smart while doing so.
Confession: I was just going to coast today, since I’d technically already submitted my four blog posts for the week (Sundays totally counts). Then Travis Jonker goes and does THREE brilliant posts in. a. row. This will not stand. I can’t compete with that. First he predicted the upcoming New York Times Best Illustrated books for 2016. Then he did a piece called Who Has Published the Most New York Times Best Illustrated Books in the Last Decade (the answer may surprise you . . . but won’t) and then he followed that up with The Failed Political Campaigns of Children’s Book Characters. I was particularly keen on the last of these because just two days ago I interviewed Aaron Reynolds about President Squid for this new show I’m doing. I recommend that if you don’t want to listen to my big face, skip to about 18:30 where you can experience the most enjoyable sensation of watching a really good author/performer read his book aloud. The voice of President Squid here is fantastic.
Another New Blog Alert: Did you know that the Horn Book has created a new blog? Designed specifically to aid families that like to read together, the Family Reading Blog just started. Check it out!
Did I ever tell you about the time I dug through the library equivalent of the last scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark to try to find Pura Belpré’s puppets for a Leonard Marcus exhibit? That was fun. In any case, please check out this article How NYC’s First Puerto Rican Librarian Brought Spanish to the Shelves. I don’t think they mention it in the piece but there’s actually a great picture book about her called The Storyteller’s Candle/La Velita de los Cuentos. Check it out if you’ve a chance!
You could do a lot of things with your day today. For my part, I suggest that you read The Paris Review article What We Talk About When We Talk About Ill-Fitting Doll Suits. If nothing else, read the captions on the photographs. They’ll get you through your day. Thanks to Sara O’Leary for the link.
By the way, remember Jules Danielson? Are you aware of the role she played recently in getting 100 authors and illustrators to contribute beautifully painted piggy banks to help bookseller Stephanie Appell pay for her cancer treatments? Well the piggies got made and they are gorgeous. Really beautifully done. Wouldn’t you like to own one?
Of course you would! So here are the details then:
How You Can Participate (And Bid on the Piggies!)
- If you’re in Nashville, join us for the BANK ON BOOKSELLERS party on Sunday, September 25, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. to view all the piggies and get the bidding started! The party is open to the public. A $10 donation is requested at the door.
- No matter where you are, you can see all the piggies and bid online via BiddingOwl beginning at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, September 25, 2016, through 8 p.m. on Friday, September 30.
- Spread the word: share this post and tag it #BankOnBooksellers!
Meanwhile, in New York City, Gallery Nucleus is hosting a Labyrinth 30th Anniversary Tribute Exhibition tomorrow (September 17th) from 7-10 p.m. called “Through Dangers Untold”. I would go.
Two great tastes that taste great together: First Book and Lee & Low. Now these two powerhouses have combined. LEE & LOW Partners with First Book and NEA Foundation to Expand New Visions Award. Just in case you were feeling depressed about the state of the world today.
If anyone has any additional information about this book that somehow never got published, I’d love to hear it.
Check out the plot description: “Years before Sarah entered the Labyrinth, a young boy named Jareth faced his own incredible journey in a desperate attempt to rescue his true love from the clutches of the wicked and beautiful Goblin Queen. Archaia and the Jim Henson Company and proud to present an original prequel to Jim Henson’s classic fantasy film.” Only they didn’t because the book never happened. Mysterious. Reminds me of that old fan theory about the movie too.
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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