“If the Foo Shits, Wear It”: Norton Juster at the BPL

Norton Juster's book signing. Photo: Cynthia K. Ritter.

Last night I attended the Boston Public Library’s Lowell Lecture Series in the Rabb Lecture Hall of the Central Library in Copley Square to hear Norton Juster talk with Simmons professor Megan Lambert. I enjoyed listening to this renowned author tell stories for an hour about how his life, his family, and spoonerisms have inspired […]

Melissa Sweet on Firefly July

Melissa Sweet

In the March/April 2014 Horn Book Magazine, Mag assistant editor Cynthia Ritter asked Melissa Sweet about her creative process when illustrating Firefly July. Read the starred review here. Cynthia K. Ritter: Your visual interpretations of the seasonal poems in this collection are a mix of literal and symbolic. What was your artistic process like when […]

Reading Rainbow app review

reading rainbow friends and family

The Emmy and Peabody–award winning Reading Rainbow, hosted by LeVar Burton, ran for twenty-three years on PBS. Now young readers can explore the Reading Rainbow app (RRKidz, 2012), which retains a similar style to the show complete with its signature, catchy theme song: “Take a look, / it’s in a book, / a reading rainbow…” […]

Roxie’s Doors app review

roxie's doors castle

“Lift the flaps and step through doors into wonderful worlds that you can explore. Open the door to a fantasy — imagination is your key!” Welcome to Roxie’s Doors (OCG Studios and Roxie Munro, 2011), an interactive lift-the-flap search-and-find app based on author/illustrator Roxie Munro’s 2004 picture book Doors. The rhyming text (with optional narration […]

“Why Did THAT Book Win?” panel recap

cbbpanel_feb2014_image3

Though it may have been postponed a week thanks to a winter storm last Thursday, nearly one hundred children’s literature enthusiasts still showed up last night at 6:00 pm at Simmons College for Children’s Books Boston’s second event, “Why did THAT book win?”, a panel discussion about the 2014 ALA children’s book awards. The panelists […]

Fascinating animal facts

roth_parrots over puerto rico

Learning about animals from an early age helps children understand their own relationship with the larger world. The following four books present fascinating facts and figures about extinct, endangered, and/or just extremely interesting animals. Susan L. Roth and Cindy Trumbore’s 2014 Sibert Award–winning Parrots over Puerto Rico is a gorgeously illustrated history of the critically […]

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving app review

thanksgiving menu

Loud Crow Interactive adds to its line-up of Peanuts holiday apps with the 40th-anniversary release of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (November 2013), based on the classic 1973 animated TV special. Charlie Brown and his sister Sally plan to spend Thanksgiving at their grandmother’s house — but then Peppermint Patty invites herself, Marcie, and Franklin over […]

Happy diamond anniversary, Weston Woods!

60th anniversary

Weston Woods is turning 60 this year! In honor of the occasion the company has created a new 60th Anniversary Commemorative Edition DVD. The hour-long special collection “includes six of [their] most beloved titles from the last 10 years”: Arnie the Doughnut, No Roses for Harry!, Wild About Books, Dem Bones, That New Animal, and […]

Let’s go to the movies!

book thief movie

Contenders for film awards flood theaters in November and December, and this year several adaptations of children’s books will be joining the race. Roger already mentioned Ender’s Game, which opened November 1st (I wholeheartedly agree with him both about the Orson Scott Card controversy and the love of Harrison Ford); several other upcoming films are […]

Intermediate books you’ve been waiting for

appelt_true blue scouts of sugar man swamp

Can’t get enough Kathi Appelt, Holly Black, Sharon Creech, or…Moose Flanagan? In these new books by favorite authors, readers will venture into a swamp and an island prison; go on a journey with a ghost; and marvel at the sudden appearance of a weird and wonderful boy. In Kathi Appelt’s folksy tall tale The True […]