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This is a very strange list

USA Today and Scholastic Parent & Child bring you the 100 Greatest Books for Kids. Does anyone know how this list was put together? It’s an odd mix of classic titles, contemporary comers, and also-rans. And, what’s this I see, no Harriet the Spy? FINKS


I have a few thoughts regarding the Wall Street Journal article about YA that has everyone, uh, a-Twitter. 1. Why does the author have to reach back FORTY YEARS to talk about “dark YA” when our last big go-round on the topic was just fifteen years ago? The generation of Sarah T., Go Ask Alice, […]

Enough already

Okay, I laughed when I saw the cover of Go the Fuck to Sleep and I laughed again at least through the first half of the pdf of the whole book that has been making the rounds. But when it became A Thing and a big prepub bestseller and people all over the net lining […]

>Practice, practice, practice

>So whadda we think about Tiger Mom? It’s funny how meta everything gets so quickly now–outrage over Amy Chua’s article rapidly devolving into debate over the outrage, answered by Chua’s emendations and demurrals . . . . I wonder if she lets her kids read from the Newbery shelf only. “I don’t see a sticker […]

>Live and on stage

>Martha Parravano and I will be at the Cambridge Public Library tomorrow night to talk about how parents can help children find good books. 7:00 PM in the lecture hall at the main library near Harvard Square.

>Parents and picture books

>I’m late to the discussion re the New York Times article about picture books but enough people have now asked me for my thoughts that here they are. Fewer picture books are being published because a) the profit margin on them is not as good as it is for novels and b) fewer people are […]

>The parents are okay too

>We finally saw The Kids Are All Right this weekend. I quite liked it, and it has the plot of a YA novel: two teenaged kids of lesbian parents curious about their sperm donor dad seek him out, wreaking entertaining havoc and ultimately begetting a bit of growing up for all concerned. While the story […]

>Common sense, my aunt Fanny

>Pat Scales weighs in on “Common Sense Media.” (How can I NOT put that in quotes?) You might recall our earlier discussion. Off to New York today to help Elizabeth celebrate her 29th birthday. I have The Little Stranger and The Godfather of Kathmandu for the Limoliner, so I should be sufficiently prepared for the […]

>Do these people even like to read?

>Brian Kenney’s SLJ editorial about Common Sense Media led me over to their site for a gander. While Brian and Liz Burns, among others, have pointed out the problems with their labeling system and lack of a review policy (plus the creepy way they simply disappear reviews that have raised eyebrows), what bothers me most […]

>Why isn’t there a license to bear children?

>Dan Gutman’s analysis of a not-a-fan letter reminds me of the odd irony that non-readers ascribe to books a degree of power that actual readers can only wish books had. (On a related note, one of our reviewers let us know that “ugly” is now a no-no word. That’s stupid. See what I did?)