Friday, May 16, 2008

Whatever happened to Children's Book Week?

This week was supposed to be the big one, right? Children's Book Week--when all the world looks to their favorite kidslit bookstores to shine a big fat light on what's great about kids books.

And here we sat, silent the whole week. feh, you say. FEH!

But hold on, we were just plum tired--beat down by the exhausting schedule we had a week ago. That's right, we celebrated Children's Book Week early, with a whole slew of author visits and events.

Who was here? Well here's the first half of what's kept us so busy:

We kicked off the week with a storytime from one of our favorite local illustrators and biggest boosters, Elizabeth Dulemba. She was here celebrating the release of Paco and the Giant Chile Plant, her new picture book. I've written about the book before, so I won't bore you with that now, but the story time was fantastic. Elizabeth is a great reader, and she entertained us all with snacks and an impromptu drawing as well!

That was Sunday, on Monday we shifted into high gear with a visit from one of the nicest, funniest writers to come to the store--Michael Buckley, author of the Sisters Grimm series. He was hysterical, talking about his long and winding journey from growing up in Akron, Ohio wanting to be a stand-up comic, through his work in television (he interned with Letterman! He wrote for Spongebob Squarepants!) and finally settling into writing books.

He talked all about his inspirations for the books, and what he hopes to do in the future. It's always great to find out that the writer of the books you love is just as fun and charming as you had hoped. Michael Buckley was that and more.

We ended Monday night with a visit from two great YA authors: Sonya Sones (One of Those Hideous Books Where the Mother Dies, What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know) and Ashley Rhodes-Courter (Three Little Words). They were here for a roundtable discussion with readers about their books, writing YA, and life in general. What an awesome event this was, with its intimate atmosphere, intense and avid audience, and two wonderful writers, women who opened themselves up to us and their readers.

Whew! Do you see now? What a great list of events we had, and that was only through Monday!

Next: more writers, more illustrators, more more more!

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