Boys boys boys, we love them, we love them

SLJ has a report up on a library’s attempt to lure more boy readers. Lots of good comments over there; I’ll only add two observations and one plug. Observation #1: it’s funny how in this field you can’t say anything about the needs of male readers without getting people het up about the needs of […]

Mash-up, indeed.

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In a sort of coloring book meets Diary of a Wimpy Kid meets Choose Your Own Adventure, Nosy Crow’s new Mega Mash-Up series by Nikalas Catlaw and Tim Wesson (December) combines marginally true information about, say, Roman gladiators, with dinosaurs (or, in another volume, aliens vs. mad scientists and—well, you get the idea) into an […]

Fighting in the Shade

fighting in the shade

I still recall fondly the female protagonists of teen “chick lit” and coming-of-age stories I read in high school. On a given day I might feel as tormented by love and teenage awkwardness as Mia Thermopolis (Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries) or lonely and isolated like Melinda Sordino (Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak). These were gals […]

Ready Player One

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Has anyone else read this yet? By Ernest Cline, Ready Player One  is set in the near  future (2044) when the world has gone mostly to shit and people spend as much time as they can in The Oasis, an enormous  virtual reality universe. The enormously wealthy creator of Oasis–the most valuable property on the […]

>Counting YA

>Harold Underdown has done some interesting digging into the statistics about YA publishing that were used by journalist D.B. Grady for an article in the Atlantic. But whether there were 30,000 YA novels published in 2009 (unlikely, as Harold demonstrates) or 8,000 (as Harold estimates), can we all agree that there are too many? My […]

Five Questions for Rick Riordan

Rick Riordan, pointing out where he gets his ideas. Rick Riordan, first up in our Live Five series at ALA, has to be one of the nicest people in the world. When I asked him if he had problems with people worried over “false gods,” he couldn’t even offer me a stern lecture for the […]

>Real Boy Movie

>We saw Thor last night, and it made me think about the chapter I wrote about boy books for A Family of Readers. I called that “Go Big or Go Home” after Will Hobbs’s novel of the same name, and boys and other people who loved that book will love this movie. Explosions, challenges, slapstick, […]

>Fingers first

>I really tried to work it with Miles and the iPad: Ehh, thinks Miles, but now his mother really, really wants one. But, at not-quite-two, he did not seem to understand that touching various spots on the glass would make different things happen. He did go after the one non-virtual button on the iPad with […]

>Grandchildren are important

>if only for the way that, posed correctly, they can take thirty pounds off a guy. photo by Richard Asch

>And THEN I’ll stick FORKS in my eyes.

>I’m over at li’l sis’s place today, declaring my love for Big Nate.