Night Runner: Max Turner
The Last Newspaper Boy in America: Sue Corbett

Wednesday Afternoon Visits: September 2

Kidlitosphere_button I did a pretty comprehensive Kidlitosphere round-up on Friday. Since then, however, there have been a slew of interesting posts. Here are a few that I couldn't resist sharing.

Newlogorg200 As the month changes, the Readergirlz divas say goodby to Coe Booth (roundup of August posts here). For September, they will be hosting Kristin Cashore (author of Graceling and Fire, both of which I adored). The theme of the month is Triumph! They'll also have Beth Kephart as author-in-residence this month. You can read more details on the Readergirlz blog. Postergirl Little Willow has just posted a Graceling Roundtable.

I've only recently discovered Ellen Hopkins' blog. She has two recent post of particular interest. She shared a post about "writing on the edge" in young adult fiction, saying "don't dare think most of today's YA readers aren't equipped to deal with books like TRICKS (about teen prostitution). They aren't just reading about these issues. They're living them. Knowing they're not alone is valuable. Knowing there's a way out is invaluable." She continued by writing about "the YA renaissance", and how it did not start with Twilight. She says: "I don't want to sound snippy or envious. I think it's great that a YA author can find the kind of following and crossover appeal that Stephenie Meyer has. But it bothers me that other (and in my opinion, better) YA authors aren't more justly rewarded." She includes good examples.

At The Brown Bookshelf, Varian Johnson links to an Examiner article by Paula Chase-Hyman about "why YA is the new hotness". I agree with Varian's positive take on "Reason #5. YA novels enable their young readers to process problems and situations from a safe distance."

Tricia muses on "half-read books" at The Miss Rumphius Effect, influenced by an essay by Suzanne Munshower in today's Guardian books blog. Someone who normally feels compelled to finish every book, Tricia has had a revelation: "Time is too precious and there many books out there waiting to be read. If a book doesn't work for me (or you) why stick with it?" That's certainly how I feel - if a book puts me to sleep for more than a couple of nights in a row, or if clunkiness in the writing makes me cringe, I will quietly set the book aside, and find something else. How about you all?

Yesterday there was an interesting discussion on a discussion group for KidLit bloggers. Today, Pam Coughlan shares some highlights at ForeWord Magazine's Shelf Space blog. After quoting Laurel Snyder (who started the whole discussion), Pam defines three different types of book buzz. She says: "Our first line of attack is knowing what kind of buzz we’re seeing. Some book coverage is justified, some... not so much. Knowing the difference can allow us to enjoy the ride of literary excitement without being taken for a ride by literary publicists." It's interesting stuff - head on over and comment with your take. And definitely don't miss the last sentence of the post.

Speaking of Pam, at MotherReader she has another reminder about registration fo the Third Annual Kidlitosphere conference. This time, she includes a list of bloggers and authors who will be attending. I challenge you to read the list and NOT want to attend. I'm so looking forward to meeting the people I haven't met before, and seeing friends from the past couple of years. It's going to be great!

Quick hits:

  • Here's more on the new web series on social media and the book industry by Mark Blevis and Greg Pincus (which I mentioned last week).
  • At Misrule, Judith Ridge shares a bit of a rant on expectations of virtue (or not) among children's authors.
  • At Roots in Myth, PJ Hoover writes about what makes for a good audiobook. She has a ton of comments on the post, with pros and cons and specific recommendations for audiobooks.
  • Little Willow has an interesting post at Guys Lit Wire about literary initials. She asks a variety of questions on the subject, and shares responses from a number of kidlitosphere friends.  
  • At Book Aunt, Kate Coombs muses on "the eight deadly words" that turn off readers "I don't care what happens to these people". So true! (And one of those things that will make me give up on a book.)
  • Travis shares breaking sock news at 100 Scope Notes (with an illustration of some of the many sock-dedecked book covers in MG fiction these days).
  • Susan Kusel writes at Booklights in praise of that essential back to school supply: the library card.
  • Roger Sutton has an interesting analysis on the changes in book length for middle grade fiction over the past 30 years.
  • At Reading Rockets, Joanne Meier for first classroom readaloud for the new school year.

I'm going to take a little blog-break over Labor Day weekend. I won't be commenting or twittering much. However, I've left some book reviews scheduled to post. Hope you all have a lovely holiday!