What Type Am I?

Don’t you love online quizzes and this one is as easy as typing in your blog URL.  Typealyzer uses a Myers-Briggs Type psychology test and analyses any blog you like.  Of course I had to do it for Kids Lit! 

And?

My writing style is ENTP – The Visionaries

Here is what the site says:

The charming and trend savvy type. They are especially attuned to the big picture and anticipate trends. They often have sophisticated language skills and come across as witty and social. At the end of the day, however, they are pragmatic decision makers and have a good analytical ability.


They enjoy work that lets them use their cleverness, great communication skills and knack for new exciting ventures. They have to look out not to become quitters, since they easily get bored when the creative exciting start-up phase is over.

So what do you think?  Is that this blog?  I do like the fact that both my blogs got the same results, shows it is more about the writing than the subject matter.

Happy Blog-versary to Me!

Amazingly six years ago today, I started my first blog, Sites & Soundbytes.  It has changed a lot over the years, becoming more about my personal public-library directing style and approach and less about great web sites, though those are still there too! 

You can check it out, if you want to see my life beyond children’s lit.

Narnia Survives

Variety has the news that the Chronicles of Narnia film series will continue onward now with 20th Century Fox instead of Disney.  The Variety article also has the interesting news that Prince Caspian ranked No. 10 in global box office performance in 2008!  Whoa!  I would never have guessed that.

They are still looking to select a writer for Voyage of the Dawn Treader but are planning a summer start date if possible.

Wish: Wishing Traditions Around the World

Wish: Wishing Traditions around the World by Roseanne Thong, illustrated by Elisa Kleven.

Readers get the joy of moving from country to country and seeing how children make wishes in various cultures.  Each country gets a two-page spread with an explanation of the way to wish and the culture lovingly depicted in Kleven’s illustrations.  Though we move from country to country and each is seen as unique, there is also a strong sense of global community here all based on the common thread of the wish.  What a powerful symbol for everyone’s desire for a positive future in the world.

Thong’s paragraphs on how to make wishes are each accompanied by a four line poem.  One could read the book to smaller children and just share the short poems in each one, but most children will want all of the interesting details.  Thong has edited her paragraphs with great skill, harboring no repetition from country to country and being factual but fascinating at the same time.

Recommended for nonfiction collections in libraries that are looking for books that are friendly entry points to multiculturalism.  This makes a great book to cuddle up with and start a discussion on how we make wishes ourselves.  Appropriate for ages 4-7. 

Tsunami!

Tsunami! by Kimiko Kajikawa, illustrated by Ed Young.

Ojiisan is the wealthiest person in his small village.  His wisdom has people walking the crooked track up the mountain to ask for his advice.  Ojiisan decides not to go to the rice harvest celebration in the village because something does not feel right to him.  So he watches the celebration from high above on the mountain.  When the first earthquake comes it doesn’t stop the celebration below.  Then Ojiisan sees the sea moving away from the shore, he realizes what is happening – tsunami!  But how can he warn the villagers celebrating below him?

This simple, strong story about one man’s sacrifice to save others in danger is breathtaking.  Young’s paper illustrations are gripping and fully capture the incredible strength of the disaster and the wonder of survival.  Kajikawa’s text is short, simple and even more effective for those reasons.  There is enough drama to carry the story forward without flowery language.

Highly recommended and timely, this book will not sit still on the shelf.  The cover alone will sell it and just wait until people take a peek inside!  Wonderful storytelling combined with great illustrations.  Appropriate for ages 4-8.

YALSA Best Books

I love the YALSA Best Books lists.  Yes, I am a huge fan of the drama and tension of the Youth Media Awards, but I also love that YALSA gives so many books attention through their best book lists. 

The list of Amazing Audiobooks gives Neil Gaiman well-deserved attention for his reading of The Graveyard Book. 

Fabulous Films has a great collection focused on the theme of "Coming of Age Around the World."  Love that Bend It Like Beckham is there, plus Persepolis.  But really adored seeing Whale Rider.  Looove it!

Great Graphic Novels makes me wish that I had more opportunity to read graphic novels.  Though I am surprised to not see Janes in Love by Cecil Castellucci on the list! 

Best Books for Young Adults is great fun, as is their Top Ten List.

I am very happy to see The Hunger Games, Waiting for Normal, and Skim on the top-ten list.  Though I see others that I have to add to my reading pile!  Has anyone read Baby by Monninger or Mexican WhiteBoy by de la Pena?

The remainder of the Best Books list has some of my favorites of the year. 

The Savage by David Almond

Debby Harry Sings in French by Meagan Brothers

Graceling by Kristin Cashore (which I wanted to be a Printz honor at the least!)

Red Necklace by Sally Gardner

Paper Towns by John Green (I consider this his best book yet)

Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (oh, the darkness of this one.  Brutal really but amazing too.)

Impossible by Nancy Werlin

And too many more to list!  It’s a doozy of a list!

Eon: Dragoneye Reborn

Eon: Dragoneye Reborn by Alison Goodman

Eon is a candidate to become the next Rat Dragoneye, one of the highest ranking positions in the Empire.  Eon is an unlikely candidate with his deformed hip which marks him as an untouchable.  Despite this, his ability to see all of the dragons is unique and makes him worthy to be a candidate.  Eon has learned all he can to prepare himself for the bonding with the dragon, memorizing complicated combat moves to be done in a pattern when approaching the dragon.  But on the day of the selection the rules are changed and Eon faces a cruel teacher who is out to set an example for who should be allowed to be a candidate.  Eon’s amazing adventure continues from there but I wouldn’t want to spoil a second of it for you.

Goodman has created a wonderful world built from both the Chinese and Japanese traditions with just enough of her own personal spin.  Eon is a wonderfully complex character: broken, lonely, trapped but brave and skilled.  Eon reminds me of the wonderful Miles Vorkosigan created by Lois McMaster Bujold, one of the greatest compliments I could give. 

Goodman also excels at pacing, wonderfully playing intense battles against tense moments of anticipation.  There is plenty of action and adventure here that improves the world building rather than detracting from it.

I consider this one of the best fantasy novels of 2008.  The cover is vivid and colorful, only hinting at the delights that wait inside.  Highly recommended for fantasy readers, this one will have you breathlessly awaiting the second in the series.

Award Thrills and Tears

Admittedly, I am a pretty emotional person.  I tend to be passionate about a lot of things, children’s literature is definitely one of them.  As you know, I live-blogged the awards (I apologize for all the typos but I was going fast).  Here are the moments that got me cheering and teary.

 

 

Waiting for Normal by Leslie Connor getting Best Middle School book for the Schneider Family Book Award.  Golly, that was so deserved!  I loved this book and felt it had a very important message for so many children. 

 

 

 

 

 

Shadra Strickland winning the Coretta Scott King Best New Talent Award for her illustrations in Bird.  Loved them!  The combination of the character’s art with her own, done in two very different but somehow cohesive styles is grand.

 

 

 

 

Sherman Alexie won the Odyssey Award for his narration of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.  An amazing book from an author who is headlining our local Fox Cities Book Festival this April.

 

 

 

 

The Surrender Tree by Margarita Engle winning the author Belpre Award AND a Newbery Honor!  I am so thrilled for this amazing poet who has documented Cuban struggles with such truth and power. 

 

 

 

 

 

The joy of seeing fantasy recognized again and again by the awards committees.  But mostly the amazing moment of Neil Gaiman winning the Newbery.  Putting an end to the theory that Newbery Committees do not select titles with kid interest! 

 

 

 

And last, but definitely not least, the amazing KT Horning from the CCBC receiving the Arbuthnot Lecture Award.  What a very deserved honor. 

There are years I am very disappointed by the awards.  Years that I wonder what happened to the books I loved.  This was not one of the them.  Well done!

2009 Newbery Award – Live Blog

Honor Books

The Underneath by Appelt (thought it would win)
The Surrender Tree by Engle (Yes!)
Savvy by Ingrid Law (Yes!)
After Tupac & D Foster by Woodson

Winner

The Graveyard Book by Gaiman (Hurrah!!!!!!!!)  (Take that critics of Newbery Awards!) LOL