>I can’t quite put my finger on it.

>PW has announced its (casually) bookseller-chosen Cuffie Awards, with Mem Fox and Helen Oxenbury’s Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes as the picture book pick. It is a big favorite here, too, getting a starred review and a spot on our Fanfare 2009 list. Every parent I know loves it, and the text and […]

>Sitting at the grownups table

>Over at Nonfiction Matters, Marc Aronson cautions us to think about the larger context in which debates about social responsibility and the Newbery take place: “What I’d like is a set of comments on the Newbery that is not drawn from a survey of four winners, or the latest demographic chart, but a wider sense […]

>Demography and the Newbery

>Here’s a link to that Bloomberg article we were discussing in yesterday’s post.

>Dasher, Dancer, Dunder and Jesus

>More Christmas sadness–”Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer” got temporarily yanked for its “religious overtones.” (That must be the Mongolian throat-singing version.)

>Dutch Courage?

>I mentioned over on Facebook showing one of my favorite Christmas movies, The Snowman, based on Raymond Briggs’s book, to the little Dutch kids from downstairs. One is two and the other four and they both seem to enjoy the film (or maybe it’s just that hypno-glaze the Snowman himself demonstrates when he watches TV […]

>Think Pink!

>Mitali Perkins Facebooked and Twittered a question to her friends: “should an author describe the race of a character or leave it to the reader’s imagination?” Good question, and she got some good answers. (Thanks, Gail, for the tip.) It’s a question we also face in reviewing–when do we mention the ethnicity or skin color […]

>From the land of the long white cloud

>Elissa is back from Middle-Earth–and tea with Margaret Mahy, who apparently lives in a cliff. For today’s pop quiz, translate and i.d. the following: “Ki raro au!” hei tā ikā.E kore pai ki āu!Ki raro!” hei tā ikā“E KORE au hia takā!”

>Listen to the children!

>Maybe Sherry Jones, whose The Jewel of Medina was cancelled by Ballantine for fear of Muslim terrorist rage, was just working with the wrong division of Random House. The copyright page of each fall 08 Random House ARC I’ve received states “Random House Children’s Books supports the First Amendment and celebrates the right to read.”

>So which is it?

>Two books reviewed in the forthcoming issue of the Horn Book Guide: From Bearport, Meish Goldish’s Deadly Praying Mantis From Lerner, Sandra Markle’s Praying Mantises: Hungry Insect Heroes Nothing* p.o.’d the late Zena Sutherland more than a nonfiction children’s book ascribing virtue or venality to animals. *Except maybe simultaneous translation in dialogue, as in “‘Hola, […]

>Stick to Your Own Kind?

>I’m intrigued by Arthur Laurents’s plans to bring West Side Story to Broadway next winter in a “bilingual revival,” having the Puerto Rican characters speaking Spanish and otherwise making the show “more realistic.” (Here’s hoping he doesn’t try to set it in the present, though, because that gorgeous, swanky 1950s brass would sound as corny […]