What Hath Harry Wrought?

Sutton bookstack

Just to get a sense of historical perspective, when I last spoke at this festival, there was no euro, no iPods, no Wikipedia, no Facebook; Pluto was still a planet; and I was still drinking. More to the point—today’s point—is that Harry Potter had yet to appear on our side of the pond. That would […]

Get your mind out of the gutter

CMYK

While working on my interview with Molly Leach about her jacket and interior design for the 50th anniversary edition of A Wrinkle in Time, I was reminded of all the terms that have alternate meanings outside the world of print design and production. Here’s a vocabulary quiz, but see how many you can answer without […]

Interview with Molly Leach

A Wrinkle in Time

About a month ago I began an email conversation with Molly Leach about her new cover and interior book design for Macmillan’s 50th anniversary edition of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle In Time. Have you seen it? The dust jacket is an updated homage to Ellen Raskin’s original, redrawing the circles and the small silhouettes of […]

Editorial: Remixing Reading

Horn Book Magazine cover, March/April 2012

Circumstance as well as preference dictated that I read the 2012 Newbery Medal– and Scott O’Dell Award–winning Dead End in Norvelt in four flavors: advance reading copy, finished book, iBook, and as an audio download from Audible.com. I read the ARC and bound book in editing the Horn Book Magazine review; when I needed to […]

The Making of Freight Train…the App

freighttrainapp

Early in the summer of 2009—many digital generations ago—HarperCollins set out to experiment with several iPhone/iPod Touch apps. We decided to create two apps based on easily searchable and popular topics (example: ABC), and one app based on a classic and best-selling picture book. The staff at Greenwillow Books was charged with figuring out how […]

Celebrating a Wrinkle

A Wrinkle in Time original cover

A couple of weeks ago Roger let me out of the office to attend the big 50th anniversary event for A Wrinkle in Time in NYC. I was going to post about this along with a piece on the new book design, but time’s moving on, so watch for a separate interview with Molly Leach […]

Present Tensions, or It’s All Happening Now

HungergamesCover-web

When the 2010 Man Booker shortlist was announced in the UK, the Daily Telegraph ran this headline: “Philip Pullman and Philip Hensher criticise Booker Prize for including present tense novels.” In fact, what Pullman said, as he explained in an article in the Guardian, was that “the use of the present tense in fiction had […]

In which I promise not to tell anyone about your terrific new book

secret

I spent most of yesterday being irritated by the conundrum of review books that come (or don’t) with nondisclosure agreements. Here’s what one looks like: CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT Date: xx/xx/xx Publisher XYZ Re: Title: Book ABC Author: Author LMNOP Publication Date: xx/xx/xx ______________________ ______________________ ______________________ Dear ___________: In order to induce [Publisher XYZ] to deliver a […]

The Sign on Sendak’s Door

Proclamation

Although grateful for the support of publishers who place advertisements in The Horn Book, I’ve never before felt the need to direct you to such from this page. But I do so now: please go and read the advertisement on page 57 and then come back here. I’ll wait. Imagine a picture book world where […]

Lunacy

koertge_goose

Mother Goose waddled to the window. Ah, there was the moon, perfect and round, its light streaming into bedrooms everywhere. She sighed.Mother Goose was upset. How could parents say that…word, that awful word, to their children? How could they use it in front of innocent little darlings almost fast asleep? Their drowsy eyes. Well-washed hands […]