Warming Up

I am going to try and write the Mother-Of-All-ALA reports tomorrow. Yes, with pictures. I have a particularly fine one of Neil Gaiman taken from approximately 400 miles away.

First up: thank you for all the kind wishes about the death of my father-in-law. BH and I appreciate each and every one. With the deaths of his father and my mother coming so close together, we’re both a little off-kilter right now, kind of like the earth has become sea and the deck of our ship tilts in unpredictable ways. But between the two of us, and with the love of our kids and friends, we lean on each other and stay upright most of the time.

The Horn Book has many great articles online this month. I strongly encourage you to read and discuss Nikki Grimes important essay, "Speaking Out" about the inexcusable fact that no African-American illustrator has yet won the Caldecott. (Leo Dillon won as a team with his wife… Grimes focuses on singular winners.)

(For the record, I agree with her.)

Love books? Love basketball? Then read this article about the literary basketball league my daughter Stef started across from Word, the bookstore she manages in Brooklyn. She has also started a literary matchmaking service. Yep, you better believe I’m proud. Yay Bookavore!!!

And from the Change Topics Completely File, I wanted to share the cover art for the British paperback version of CHAINS:

What do you think?

20 Replies to “Warming Up”

  1. Book Cover

    Honestly, I think its 10x better than the American cover. Looking at the US cover, you can’t really tell what the book is about. The new one is done quite beautifully.

  2. Wow, if the US covers looked like that I wouldn’t be able to keep it on the shelves.

  3. British Cover of CHAINS

    I am one who personally liked very much the American cover and its symbolism as I put in my blog post on CHAINS (http://www.rascofromrif.org/?p=2982) …and I wasn’t prepared when I read your note on TWITTER today about a different cover to like the new cover from Great Britain. But oh, do I like it! Front and back!

    Carol Hampton Rasco
    Reading Is Fundamental

  4. I love both your covers, but I am THRILLED to see a photograph of a lovely African American girl on the cover of the UK edition. And I love the back cover! Happy to see Bloomsbury getting this one right.

  5. Cover, etc.

    Wow! Amazing, terrific, splendiferous! Fabulous cover!

    Just a question (and don’t ask me to respond in any way), Grimes states that We Are The Ship not winning the Caldecott pushed her over the edge; I wonder why she does not mention the fact that it did not win the King award for illustration (it is an honor book and the AUTHOR winner)?

    I thought MOON OVER STAR by Pinkney was fabulous, but this year his picture book interpretation of the LION AND THE MOUSE could be the ONE! It is amazing!

  6. Torn

    I like the new cover much better than the other one—that one is more symbolic and this one jumps off the shelf at you.

    But… if I picked this up I would expect it to be set in the deep south. This doesn’t look like NYC to me.

    (hedgehog librarian)

  7. my one gripe with the new cover is tht her hair does not appear to be in its natural state. (i’m not speaking as any sort of authority here, this is just a guess… i know that there are some african americans with naturally straight hair.) in general i would rather just about everybody stick to their natural hair color and texture, especially women of color. add to that the historical inaccuracy, and well… i would just have preferred thick natural curls. and that, friends and neighbors, is my opinion.

  8. Woe! I missed the news about your father-in-law. It’s a times like these that you find out what kind of stuff your family is made of, and yours appears to be made of the best kind. Some wise woman once sent me an email saying that the muse doesn’t respond well to pressure. I hope she remembers that :), but I also hope her muse is there to support her, too.

    I like the cover of the paperback. The model’s expression seems just right.

  9. ..

    I just wanted to let you know that Speak saved my life tonight. Thank you for being you.

  10. stuff

    So sorry about the loss of your father in law. My condolences.

    Great book cover and I look forward to the ALA report!


  11. Chains

    I loved the cover of the British paperback version – much better than the US hardcover. But I have to admit, it’s the only book I’ve ever read that made me angry. Not because of what was happening in the book, but because the story just seemed to stop. There was no ending.

    Each book in the Harry Potter series was a story within itself. Octavian Nothing is a continuation, but the first book came to a conclusion. And this just stopped. Was this your idea? The publishers? (I’m guessing you probably don’t think it just stopped?)

    Anyway – not trying to be a pain or anything. I know you can’t please everyone. But it really bugged me – enough that I actually took the time to look you up and comment.

    On a better note, I read Fever 1793 and loved it. 🙂

  12. i loved this book it was the best book i ever read. i had to read it for a book report and i never put it down. can you right a series of the book plz plz plz plz!!!!!!! =] from laura

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