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Where I saw the folks I dig

I don't know what my question was but I like John Rocco's answer

Back from ALA (and vacation) and it’s already becoming a blur. In Anaheim, I spent the weekend at the booth five-questioning twelve award winners and honor book recipients, each interview fine but in toto too many; we videotaped them this year thanks to the mad skills of Guy Gonzalez and Mike Berse and will be uploading them in the coming weeks for your viewing pleasure. I had just two social events: a dinner hosted by FSG for Jack Gantos in honor of his Scott O’Dell Award, and the Newbery-Caldecott banquet as Little, Brown’s guest. I got really nervous at the beginning of Jack’s Newbery speech, remembering the printed version awaiting Horn Book readers and thinking, this is NOT what we discussed. But in fact it was, Jack’s expert delivery making the speech seem new and unrehearsed. (Elissa has posted a neat directory of all our ALA coverage.)

On Monday, Richard picked me up for the drive to West Hollywood and a visit with our lovely Ethan and Rebecca in their Melrose Place-like apartment complex . . .

Where was Heather?


then up the coast to see Andy Davis . . .

O Captain! My Captain! Richard steering Andy's boat

then up again (via the PCH, so beautiful) to see old Pitzer friends and our lovely Dorian and Julie and Miles and Chloe, the adorable newest member of the Mill Valley branch of the family.

Chilling with Chillow


I did not get a lot of reading done–Gillian Flynn’s Dark Places, Simon Winchester’s Outposts, and (telling myself I needed to test-drive an illustrated book on my new Kindle but really just curious to re-visit my eight-year-old’s taste), the first volume in The Happy Hollisters series. My new Kindle (touch-screen) is way ahead of the first iteration but I still don’t like the lack of enough contrast on the e-ink screen. The Hollisters reminded me of Sally and Bobby Draper bouncing around in the back of drunk Betty’s station wagon, regularly facing near-drownings, fires, and “rough-looking” men with can-do spirit and an almost complete lack of parental supervision. I don’t think those books could be published today (unless the Hollisters were each five years older and living in an apocalyptic Shoreham beset by fallen angels).

Roger Sutton About Roger Sutton

Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.



  1. Around six years ago I had a 4th grader read nothing but the Happy Hollisters over and over and over. He’d moved from California to NYC a year earlier and was pissed, pissed, pissed. Looked just like a kid in the books or Dennis the Menace, take your pick, and was one angry kid. He’d wander through the football game at recess (you may recall this happens in a blocked-off city street:) and stick his foot out now and then to see if he could manage to trip anyone. He absolutely refused to read anything else recreationally (as he did begrudgingly read the assigned books). Only kid I’ve every come across in my many years of teaching who read the books, much less was besotted by them. (Though, clearly, they provided some sort of soothing comfort food for him.)

  2. Roger Sutton Roger Sutton says:

    Monica, he sounds like a dead ringer for Hollister nemesis Joey Brill, who bedevils the family with little attacks just like the one you describe. Maybe he was picking up tips? Or maybe he was just illustrating our beloved dictum that kids need to see themselves in books 😉

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