Review: The Scraps Book by Lois Ehlert


The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life by Lois Ehlert

This nonfiction picture book allows readers a glimpse into Ehlert’s creative process as well as her personal history.  The book begins with a very young Ehlert and how she was raised by parents who enjoyed making things with their hands.  She even had her own art space in the house.  After art school, she worked on her own art in the evenings and in an art studio by day.  She wasn’t creating books right away, but when she started she found inspiration right in her own life.  At this point, the book focuses on Ehlert’s previous work and the process she uses to create her beloved books.  This is a colorful and delightful visit to an artist’s studio.

Ehlert approaches this biographical book just as she does her fictional picture books.  The pages are scattered with scraps, cut out objects, designs from her previous work, and photographs from her past.  The result is a book that shines with her own personal style and energy.  This could be no one else’s studio and no one else’s art.  Ehlert invites young readers not only to explore her own history and approach to art, but also to seek out their own and create things themselves. 

Bright, beautifully messy, and wonderfully creative, this book will be inspiring to young artists and authors.  Appropriate for ages 6-8.

Reviewed from copy received from Beach Lane.

Eleanor & Park–The Movie


Whoa, somehow I missed that Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell is going to be made into a movie.  DreamWorks studio has picked up the rights to the book and Rowell will be writing the screenplay.  That alone makes me entirely ecstatic because it will mean that it stays true to the book.

But most importantly, these are two real-life teen characters being brought to the screen.  Eleanor is not from the worlds of Hunger Games or Divergent.  She’s real and honest and flawed and gorgeous.  Let’s hope that casting keeps her that way.  Park too of course, but it will be Eleanor who truly breaks the stereotype of what a beautiful teen girl is. 

Here’s to creating a teen movie that will change lives!

Summer/Fall Indies New Voices Titles

The American Booksellers Association has announced their top ten picks for the Summer/Fall Indies New Voices Titles for children and young adults.  These books represent the best debuts of the coming publishing season.


The Glass Sentence The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher The Secret Hum of a Daisy

The Glass Sentence by S. E. Grove

The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy

The Secret Hum of a Daisy by Tracy Holczer



Falling into Place Illusive Lies We Tell Ourselves

Falling into Place by Amy Zhang

Illusive by Emily Lloyd-Jones

Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

Midnight Thief (Midnight Thief, #1) Salt & Storm

Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne

Salt & Storm by Kendall Kulper

Six Feet Over It The Truth About Alice

Six Feet over It by Jennifer Longo

The Truth about Alice by Jennifer Mathieu