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March children’s lit events in Boston

There are a heckuva lot of events happening in and around Boston this month — definitely a good thing, since we’re all starting to go a little stir-crazy with winter dragging on. Signings, workshops, panels, and drink nights make for a nice change from holing up at home on these dreary days. Be sure to check our monthly events calendar for all the details.

czekaj_hip and hop don't stopTomorrow, Saturday the 8th, at 12:30 pm, the Cambridge Public Library’s main branch will host Jef Czekaj, Shelli Paroline, Braden Lamb, Bob Flynn, Dan Moynihan, Josh Dahl, and Dan Mazur for a “Comic and Graphic Novel Workshop with the Experts.”

Tomorrow evening from 6:00 to 9:00 pm, Porter Square Books will host a fundraiser for Cambridge Friends School. Author/illustrator Jef Czekaj will read and sign his books (and rap!) at the event beginning at 6:30.

Also tomorrow evening: authors Gregory Maguire (Wicked) and Kathryn Lasky (Guardians of Ga’hoole) will participate in a 7:00 pm symposium entitled “Talking to Children About Social Injustice” before tomorrow night‘s 8:00 performance of Tony Kushner’s adaptation of Brundibar & But the Giraffe! at the Central Square Theater.

Author/illustrator Marc Brown will speak as part of BPL’s “Gateway to Reading” Lowell Lecture Series on Sunday, March 9th, at 2:00 pm. The series features authors, scholars, and experts in the field of children’s literature and literacy.

YA author Leah Cypess will sign her new book Death Sworn at the Brookline Children’s Bookshop at 2:00 pm on Sunday the 9th.

diterlizzi_some bugsAuthor Angela DiTerlizzi and illustrator Brendan Wenzel will read and sign their new picture book Some Bugs at the Framingham Barnes & Noble on Tuesday, March 11th, at 7:00 pm and at Wellesley Books on Wednesday the 12th at 4:00 pm.

On Thursday, March 13th, at 4:30 pm, Hyde Square Task Force’s Youth Literacy Theater Troupe will present My Name is María Isabel, based on the children’s book by Alma Flor Ada.

The Writers’ Loft’s monthly picture book manuscript critique group meets Thursday, March 13th and on Thursday the 27th at 7:00 pm. Manuscripts for critique should be submitted by the Monday prior to the meeting. Writers interested in breaking into nonfiction freelancing work or critiquing a nonfiction manuscript are welcome at the Loft’s new Nonfiction Think Tank, which meets this month on Friday the 14th at 10:00 am. The monthly YA Think Tank writing group will be held at 10:00 am on Saturday the 15th. Participants will workshop their YA works-in-progress; manuscripts for critique should be submitted one week prior to the meeting.

Peter and Paul Reynolds will sign their first published collaboration, Going Places, at the Blue Bunny bookstore on Saturday the 15th at 11:00 am.

Leave Your SleepAt 1:00 pm on Saturday the 15th, Natalie Merchant and Barbara McClintock will sign copies of Leave Your Sleep at The Carle Museum in conjunction with the exhibit featuring art from the book

Also on Saturday the 15th, author David A. Kelly will sign The Missing Marlin, the latest book in his Ballpark Mysteries series, at the Framingham Barnes & Noble at 2:00 pm.

The Carle Museum’s exhibition “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile and Friends: The Art of Bernard Waber” opens on Wednesday, March 19th.

March’s KidLit Drink Night will celebrate Candlewick Press at Orleans Restaurant on Wednesday the 19th at 5:30 pm.

The Writers’ Loft will host their new Middle Grade Morning Critique group on Thursday, March 20th, at 10:00 am. Please email if you are interested in submitting a middle-grade manuscript in progress for critique.

The Massachusetts chapter of the national kidlit book club Chapter & Verse will meet in the Stevens Memorial Library at 6:30 pm on Thursday the 20th. This month, author Anne Broyles and librarian Marina Salenikas will facilitate discussion of The Garden of My Imaan by Farhana Zia and Big Red Lollipop by Ruhksana Khan, illustrated by Sophie Blackall.

Local author-illustrator Anne E.G. Nydam will read from and sign her new middle-grade fantasy The Extraordinary Book of Doors at the Wellesley Free Library on Thursday the 20th at 7:00 pm.

divergent posterDivergent, the movie adaptation of the first book in the trilogy of the same name by Veronica Roth, opens on Friday, March 21st.

SCWBI New England and Lesley University will host a day-long program for educators entitled “From Creative Process to Curriculum Connections: Children’s Books in the Classroom” on Saturday, March 22nd, from 10:00 am to 3:30 pm at the Carle Museum. Panels will cover nonfiction picture books, realistic fiction, and fantasy; panelists include Jane Yolen, Sarah S. Brannen, Elise Broach, Jean Brett, Julie Berry, and other authors in addition to Lesley Language and Literacy department faculty. Registration is $30.

Also on Saturday, March 22nd, author Josh Funk will lead a Pitch Practice / Open Mic in preparation for Pitchapalooza with The Book Doctors (Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry) at the 2014 NESCBWI Conference. This free social event is open to all and will run from 3:00 to 5:00 pm at the Writers’ Loft.

Author Melissa Stewart and illustrator Sarah S. Brannen will be appearing at the Concord Bookshop on Sunday, March 23rd, at 2:00 pm to discuss and sign their new picture book Feathers: Not Just for Flying.

Brookline Booksmith will hold a panel discussion of YA authors Leah Cypess (Death Sworn), A.C. Gaughen (Lady Thief), Tiffany Schmidt (Bright Before Sunrise), Victoria Schwab (The Unbound), and Courtney C. Stevens (Faking Normal) on Monday, March 24th, at 7:00 pm. Can’t make it? Catch the panelists at Wellesley Books at 7:00 pm on Tuesday the 25th.

For its first anniversary, The Writers’ Loft will host a special N. Metro West Boston KidLit Meet Up Night from 7:30-10:00 pm on Tuesday the 25th.

The Writers’ Loft’s monthly picture book manuscript critique group meets Thursday, March 27th, at 7:00 pm. Manuscripts for critique should be submitted to by the Monday prior to the meeting.

On Saturday, March 29th, at 10:00 am, Wellesley Books will host a special author-led storytime and craft with author/illustrator Scott Magoon to celebrate his new picture book Breathe.

lyle lyleThe Carle Museum will hold a members-only opening reception for special exhibition “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile and Friends: The Art of Bernard Waber” on Saturday the 29th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. The event includes a conversation with Johanna Hurtwitz, Susan L. Roth, and Paulis Waber, moderated by guest curator Leonard Marcus. (Members, plaese RSVP to by Monday, March 24th.) Join Mr. Marcus for a guided tour of the exhibit on Sunday the 30th at 2:00 pm.

Newtonville Books will host a launch party for Tui Sutherland’s Wings of Fire: The Brightest Night on Sunday the 30th at 2:00 pm.

Do you have the inside scoop on more upcoming Boston area children’s book–related events? Let us know in the comments or email

Katie Bircher About Katie Bircher

Katie Bircher, associate editor at The Horn Book, Inc., is a former bookseller and holds an MA in children's literature from Simmons College. Follow Katie on Twitter @lyraelle.

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