Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cover Comparisons

Okay, so the middle school guys book group is reading H.I.V.E, by Mark Walden. It's all about Otto, a kid who's good at being bad, and how he's kidnapped by this school for budding villainous types (H.I.V.E. stands for Higher Institute of Villainous Education) to train him in the ways of trickery, hack-ery, and overall villainy. Only, Otto is having none of it. So he spends the book getting together a team of like-minded kids to help him bust out of the school, located on an isolated volcanic island, and escape the computer traps, monsters, and deadly assassins. Pretty cool, huh?

But what I want to talk about is the covers. Or not talk, just show. Up on the right is the original hardback cover with illustrations by the awesome Adam Rex. And on the left is the paperback cover, which the sequel resembles (it's green instead of...metallic orange? bronze? I can't tell). Which do you think looks cooler?

That hardback cover? That thing popped. I want to read that book. The other one? Maybe it's just me, but the latest version vanishes into a sea of metallic cover sameness--is this Alex Rider? Is this Evil Genius? Is it even different from those others? Who knows what's inside that cover.

Which is too bad, because inside these covers is an action-packed story of Mission Impossible/Great Escape coolness.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Hey, what's up with our friend Elizabeth Dulemba?

It's funny you should ask! We haven't had her coloring page here for a few weeks, but here's her latest, from this past Tuesday:

For more wonderful coloring pages, you can always go to her website--click on the link to her blog. So, what else has she been up to?

What's that? A page from her new book Paco and the Giant Chile Plant? And it's hitting the shelves any day now?

Yes it's true. This is a great picture book, by the way. It's a wonderfully tender re-telling of the Jack and the Beanstalk tale. We'll be having her in the store to celebrate it's release in early May, I believe. Keep checking the website for date and time!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Guess Who's Coming to Little Shop of Stories?

Or, How I Spent My Friday Night...

This poster measures nearly 2 x 3 feet and looks more awesome when not viewed as a picture taken with my phone...

More importantly, MO WILLEMS IS COMING APRIL 3rd AT 4pm!!! (Yes, the sign is wrong. He'll be here at 4PM, so don't be late...)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Recipe for a book-tastic birthday party

Want to know how much Golden Books rock?
You remember Golden Books, don't you? They made those classics from childhood: The Saggy Baggy Elephant, The Pokey Little Puppy, and so many more, including my favorite, I Can Fly, by the classic designer/animator Mary Blair.

Recently I discovered that if you buy one of their collections of Golden Books, included in the pack is a blank Little Golden Book! When I discovered this, I immediately schemed to buy way too many of the packs just to get my hands on a few of these things.

Then I saw the Make Your Own Little Golden Book! These are great--they come with crayons and markers, as well as stencils and stickers based on various licenced properties.

When my daughter turned 5, we had a book party: Everyone came dressed as their favorite book character, brought their favorite book which we read in one big storytime, and we kicked off the party by handing out the Make Your Own Little Golden Books and having a bookmaking bash!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Do You Know Horn Book?

If there ever were a New York Times Book Review for Children's and Young Adult Literature, it would be Horn Book. But Horn Book is not NYT Book Review jr., by any means--it is a wonderful journal unto its own. Filled with excellent reviews and articles, Horn Book has been a titan in the world of kidlit, providing some wonderful perspective and criticism for over 80 years.

So why bring them up now? Well, today I received the very first "Notes from Horn Book," their monthly electronic newsletter. It's chock full of good stuff, including commentary on the recent Caldecott/Newbery awards, an interview with one of Little Shop of Stories' favorite authors: Jon Scieszka, reviews, and even an "ask Horn Book" section. All very cool, and you can sign up for it free on their website.

(Check out the cover from July 2002 by recent Decatur Library and LSOS visitor, David Weisner!)