Noticed this on our website?
Already receive Reading Corner? You’re still in for a treat . . . starting with our next issue (September 14), the newsletter will have a fresh new look, and its name will be Children’s Corner. Everything else is staying the same; we'll still be bringing you all the news, features and reviews of the best in books for children and teens.
If you’re a current subscriber, you can also put your name in the hat for 20 free books by sharing one of our September issues. Just click one of the share buttons in the upper-right corner of the newsletter, and share away.
See our latest issue, if you'd like an example of what I'm talking about.
I hope you enjoy our newsletter. Make sure to leave a comment on this blog post if you have any suggestions for what you’d like to see in Children’s Corner.
Since I know many of BookPage's readers love to read children's and teen books themselves (or with their kids), I wanted to alert you to a couple recent recommendations on BookPage.com:
Editor Lynn Green interviewed both Andrea Pinkney and Jon Katz for issues of Reading Corner (sign up here).
Pinkney wrote Bird in a Box, a middle grade novel that takes place during the Great Depression. The story centers on a group of kids in Brooklyn who are captivated by boxer Joe Louis. Here's a preview of the interview:
Why was Joe Louis such an important figure for African Americans in the 1930s and ’40s?
When Joe Louis came onto the boxing scene, he symbolized tremendous hope for African Americans. Joe was boxing at a time when black folks in America were still considered second-class citizens, and when segregation was still a sad reality. But in boxing, one’s ability to swing hard in the ring has nothing to do with the color of their skin. Louis’s pounding punches showed the world that a black mother’s son had superior abilities.On the night Barack Obama won the presidential election, there was an overwhelming pride that welled in the hearts of many people. There was cheering in the streets. Tears of joy came to the faces of grown men. A black man had made momentous progress toward social change. This same pride and elation filled the night of June 22, 1937, when Joe Louis, “the Brown Bomber,” became the heavyweight champion of the world.
Is there a specific message you hope young readers will take from this book?
More than anything, I’d like young readers to know that even when it feels like life is giving you a beating, there’s always hope around what may at first look like a very dark corner.
Lynn interviewed Jon Katz about picture book Meet the Dogs at Bedlam Farm. Take a look at these main characters:
The picture book offers Katz's wisdom about dogs and life. Here's a preview of the interview:
Why did you decide to write a book for children at this point in your career?
Children are the purest and most intense animal lovers on the earth. They experience animals in a very particular way, unfettered by the many issues adults bring to their attachments. Animals are the beloved and imaginary comforters and soulmates of many children, as psychologists can attest. Kids talk to animals in very touching ways.
Animals are sometimes scary to them, but more often are very loving and never cruel or wounding. Animal fantasies are a seminal part of childhood development. The Bedlam Farm dogs run the gamut for kids—the troubled dog, the love dog, the serious dog, the healing dog. Until I wrote Meet The Dogs Of Bedlam Farm, I didn't quite realize how broad and familiar an emotional range Lenore, Frieda, Izzy and Rose covered.
We hope you enjoy these books. It's always a pleasure to interview authors, especially when they provide such thoughtful answers as Pinkney and Katz.
What children's books are you recommending lately?
In today's edition of Reading Corner, we asked you: What's your favorite series for kids and teens?
The e-newsletter highlights Brandon's Mull's A World Without Heroes, book one in the new Beyonders series. Writing about this novel made me reminisce about my own favorite series. On this very blog, I've gushed about:
What are your favorite series? Let us know in the comments!
Tim Wynne-Jones (author of the Rex Zero series) has a new book out this week. Called Blink & Caution, it's about a couple of teen runaways who get drawn into a dangerous crime—and fall into an unconventional romantic relationship.
Our reviewer Heather Seggel liked the book so much that we decided to interview Wynne-Jones for the latest issue of Reading Corner. The questions in the interview range from serious to silly, but here's my favorite:
If you had to be stranded on a desert island with one fictional character, who would you want it to be?
Probably Hamlet. I'd make him do all the work. It would be good therapy for him—no time to stand around soliloquizing. Is that even a word? Anyway, Hamlet. I just hope the island would be somewhere tropical and not in the North Sea. Who wants to hang with a melancholy Dane when it's cold and rainy all the time?
I know many of our adult readers enjoy YA books—will you check out Blink & Caution?
This morning's edition of Reading Corner highlights several award-winning children's books—from the recent Caldecott winner A Sick Day for Amos McGee to Black Radishes, a new middle grade novel that was named a Sydney Taylor Honor Book for its authentic portrayal of the Jewish experience.
What is your favorite award-winning children's book?
If you're a regular reader of this blog, you already know my answer: anything by Madeleine L'Engle. Favorites include A Ring of Endless Light (Newbery Honor Book, 1981) and A Wrinkle in Time (Newbery Award, 1962).
Speaking of award winners, Judy Blume has won too many accolades to name. Currently, Random House's Listening Library is running a contest which might win you a personalized message from Judy herself!—not to mention an iPod Touch. Check it out here.
In this morning's edition of Reading Corner, I mention that one of my favorite holiday picture books ever is Carl's Christmas by Alexandra Day. And of course, I will always love my family's (now nearly fallen-apart) pop-up version of 'Twas the Night Before Christmas!
What are your favorite holiday children's books? Let us know in the comments section of this post.
In Wednesday's edition of Reading Corner, we revealed the Best Children's Books of 2010, as determined by the editors of BookPage. We chose 10 picks in each age range (picture books, middle grade and teen), and our choices include a range of genres: from historical fiction to humor, from fantasy to true-to-life family stories.
Here's the for the full list of our Best Children's Book of 2010. Check it out, then tell us what we missed.
You've learned all about BookPage editors' favorite books of 2010, but you may have realized that something's missing from our coverage. . .
What about kids and teen books?!
In tomorrow's edition of Reading Corner, we'll reveal our editor-selected Best Children's Books of 2010. The list will be divided into the categories of picture books, middle grade and teen books.
Sign up now to receive Reading Corner, and tell us . . .
What's your favorite picture book/children's chapter book/teen book of 2010?
President Obama's picture book Of Thee I Sing was released a week ago. If you haven't yet had a chance to take a look, this trailer from Random House Children's Books is definitely worth two minutes of your time.
Loren Long's illustrations are gorgeous, and it's interesting to get a behind-the-scenes look at his creative process:
I love how the illustrations of the American heroes as children come together as a group as the pages turn. Robin Smith praises this artistic choice in a review for BookPage:
Loren Long’s tall and thin stylized illustrations are perfect for the images of the Obama children and the president and serve to add visual interest to the spare text. Especially memorable are the images of O’Keeffe painting an enormous flower, Maya Lin reflected in the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the young Chavez addressing farm workers. On the opposite page are smaller images of Malia and Sasha, joined by images of the famous folk carrying the tools of their given work. The final spread is a joyful collection of all sorts of American children with young versions of the famous standing in the front row.
Also in BookPage: Read an illustrated Q&A with Long about 2008's Drummer Boy.
Every edition of Reading Corner (BookPage's e-newsletter that focuses on kids and teen books) includes a giveaway—anything from a collection of spooky teen novels to back-to-school picture books.
A few issues ago, the lucky winner was Teresa Fussell, Library-Media Specialist at Stuart-Burns Elementary in Burns, TN. Whenever I contact contest winners to let them know they're going to receive a box of new books from BookPage, I always know they're excited . . . but I don't usually get a picture proving their excitement:
Thank you for the wonderful photo, Teresa!
Reading Corner goes out tomorrow—and YOU could be the next book winner. This week's issue is about books that will get boys excited about reading—click here for a hint of what we'll be covering, and sign up to receive Reading Corner.