All steamed up

corsets and clockwork

As my friend and fellow blogger observed not long ago, “steam is so hot right now.”  This year has seen a mind-boggling number of steampunk-themed events in the northeast alone: International Steampunk City, which took over the town of Waltham for a weekend; a book tour for The Steam­punk Bible; an exhibit on steampunk aesthetic […]

Thrill-o-RAMA!

judy moody goes to hollywood

Get out your pink boa and sunglasses! This past Friday the movie Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer, based on the bestselling book series by author Megan McDonald and illustrator Peter H. Reynolds, opened in theaters. Whether or not you had a chance to see it in the theaters this past weekend, here are […]

Wild rumpus

everything butt art

I can’t draw. You wouldn’t want me on your Pictionary team. I also have a fifteen-month-old, so tushy humor is big right now. For these reasons, Brian Snyder and Alexis Moniello’s Everything Butt Art at the Zoo (Madbrook, May) caught my eye. “What can you draw with a butt? Everything!” Starting with a flattened-looking W […]

The Big Four

Rage

I just read Rage by Jackie Morse Kessler (HMH, April), a follow-up to October’s Hunger. In each book, a troubled girl on the brink of killing herself (intentionally or through miscalculated self-injury) is offered a second chance by Death: take on the role of a Horseman of the Apocalypse. Anorexic, over-exercising Lisa becomes the avatar […]

Lookin’ good

Print

Beauty and makeup how-to books are abundant and ever-popular—makeup artist turned beauty mogul Kevyn Aucoin’s New York Times bestseller Making Faces (Little, Brown, 1997) and his later Face Forward (Little, Brown, 2000) set the bar high. Erika Stalder (with celebrity stylists Christopher Fulton and Cameron Cohen) smartly cashes in on the genre for a young […]

“I’ll clean up my act when I’m good and ripe!”

Karl Beckstrand’s bizarrely funny picture book Bad Bananas (Premio, June) shows how good bananas go wrong. Fresh from the grocery store, they’re sweet and “conform nicely to the bunch,” but before you know it they’re “borrowing” the fruit bowl for joyrides and loitering in “dimly lit lunchboxes.” The fair trade and organic labels of their […]

Wimpy Kid and beyond

Rick Detorie’s The Accidental Genius of Weasel High (Egmont, April) comes hot on the heels of the latest movie adaptation of Jeff Kinney’s popular series, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (currently in theaters). This paperback original will appeal to Wimpy Kid fans in both its format and its angsty content. Accidental Genius poses […]

Thirsty?

I’m currently appreciating Teeth: Vampire Tales (HarperCollins), an upcoming short story anthology edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling. The big-name contributors such as Neil Gaiman, Ellen Kushner, Holly Black, Tanith Lee, and Garth Nix initially caught my attention, but it’s refreshing to find tales by authors I haven’t read before (Suzy McKee Charnas, Steve […]

Cover girls

I smiled when I saw Mitali Perkins’s Facebook status update the other day. Apparently it was World Read Aloud Day—one of those things, like Mitali, that I can usually feel pretty good about (unlike Turn Off Your TV Week or Stop Eating So Much Takeout Month). On World Read Aloud Day I read a chapter […]

Celeb BFF wisdom?

Like many children who grew up in the nineties, I know who Elizabeth Berkley is—she played Jessie Spano on the popular, heavily syndicated Saved by the Bell. So when Ask Elizabeth (Putnam, March) came into the office, I snatched it up out of curiosity (and perhaps fear). As it turns out, it’s getting a lot […]