Specials: Scott Westerfeld
Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy: Gary D. Schmidt

Sunday Afternoon Visits: June 11

It seems to have been a relatively quiet week on the kid lit blog front, at least in part because of some technical problems that people had with Blogger. TypePad has been up and running fine, except that occasionally I stop getting emailed the comments to my blog. And then they start up again a couple of days later. Do other people have this problem? Anyway, here are a few things that caught my eye as I was catching up on the blogs:

  • One positive trend that I've noticed is that children's book bloggers seem to be getting more attention in the mainstream media (not me, not yet, but I'm happy to see the people who are - fame by association and all that). First off, Liz Burns from A Chair, A Fireplace and A Tea Cozy was mentioned in several articles on MSN.com as a librarian extraordinaire. Then just today, Elizabeth Bird from A Fuse #8 Production was interviewed on NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday. She managed to get in plugs for a number of great books, and seems to well on her way to her goal of being the most famous children's librarian in the world. Little Willow also reports that her blog has been getting more attention recently, and takes a step back to talk about who she is, and what she likes about her favorite books.
  • On the way to being famous, A Fuse #8 Production is working on a list of the Top 25 American Children's Books in the Last 25 Years. Head on over and leave your suggestions in the comments section. There are some wonderful books already listed. You can also find many books listed in the comments of an earlier post here.
  • Sally at All About Children's Books writes about the joy of receiving books in the mail, and suggests that readers give away a book to someone else this week. I know that I love both giving away and receiving books. The book I most want right now is New Moon, the sequel to Stephenie Meyer's Twilight (which I raved about here). Sadly New Moon is not yet published.
  • Michele has an interesting poll over at the Scholar's Blog Spoiler Zone. She asks: "how many other Wicked Women, who aren't Witches or Fairies, are there in children's literature?" There is some great discussion in the comments of the post. If you have thoughts on wicked women from children's literature, head on over and contribute.
  • There's a lot of discussion about Scott Westerfeld's Uglies trilogy this week, with a review of Pretties at Blog from the Windowsill, a review of Specials at MotherReader, and another review of Specials at Kids Lit. Like me, MotherReader was less than wowed by Specials, though Tasha liked it. And we are all in agreement that Tally Youngblood is a very cool girl.
  • MotherReader also has some updated thoughts about next week's 48-hour book challenge. I am definitely planning to participate, and have a stack of books saved up for the weekend. 
  • Camille at Book Moot has a fun post about hearing Meg Cabot speak at a local bookstore. I'm a big Meg Cabot fan, too. I think that her books are a lot of fun, and that her blog is hilarious.
  • Also entertaining, Leila at bookshelves of doom reviews the third Nancy Drew book. 
  • Susan at Chicken Spaghetti links to an entertaining Guardian article about Daniel Handler, aka Lemony Snicket. The article asks: is Daniel Handler jealous of himself (since he's so famous as Snicket, but not so much so as himself)?
  • And speaking of people named Daniel, I simply insist that you go over to the First Book blog and read this post about a kid named Daniel who, for his 10th birthday, asked guests to make donations to First Book instead of giving him gifts "so that kids in need could have books to read". Does that bring tears to your eyes, or what?
  • I learned from Read Roger that The Horn Book has added a new web page with links to blogs and websites "inspired by current articles in the Magazine". I think that it will be a nice addition to the magazine.
  • Planet Esme has a great post about stopping the summer reading slide. She talks about creating a special place for kids to read, taking literary field trips, reading sleepovers, and lots of other ideas. I am especially partial to the section about freedom of choice (letting kids pick what they want to read over the summer).
  • Rick Riordan has posted several of his recent UK interviews on his blog. He's been making the circuit in the UK since receiving the Red House Children's Book Award. Some of the interview questions and answers are quite entertaining. Like this: Question: "If you had godlike powers what one feat would you perform?" Answer: "It would be very cool to turn someone who was annoying me into a tree."
  • And while we're visiting author blogs, Shannon Hale posts about the pledge that she takes with audiences that she speaks with. It starts like this: "On this day, June 7, 2006, Shannon Hale, the famous and beautiful writer, told me that I never have to read a boring book again, when I'm reading for fun", and gets better from there. I think that everyone should think about taking this pledge (or some personal variant of it), young or old.
  • And finally, my thanks to those who linked to my new 200 Cool Girls from Children's Literature list, and to those who linked and commented on the interim posts along the way. Liz from A Chair, A Fireplace and A Tea Cozy actually counted up how many of the girls from the list she "knows" (know meaning has read their books, of course). Kelly also mentioned the list recently at Big A little a, as did Finding Wonderland (I can't comment there because I don't have a Blogger account, but I do appreciate it). And I had simply tons of visitors come over from a post on Melissa Wiley's lovely new blog, The Lilting House. Michele just wrote about the list over at Scholar's Blog, in a post with the irresistible title: Cool Girls and Wicked Women. Kate at Kate's Book Blog just wrote a nice post about my list, too. My thanks again to everyone who helped with the list.

While I'm sure that there is plenty of other interesting material out there, it's well past Sunday afternoon and into Sunday night now, so I will say goodnight for now. I'm really going to have to start posting about the things that I notice more frequently, so that I don't need these mammoth posts to catch up. Happy browsing!