Books for Younguns, Young Adults and the Young-at-Heart

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math

What if your life was in danger...and the only thing that could save you was math?  Would you know what to do?

The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math by Sean Connolly is the latest of his books making math and science fun.

This book is broken up into 24 challenges, each one presenting a dangerous scenario and giving the necessary information to save yourself with math skills.  This is followed by room to work out your problem, then a step-by-step discussion of the answer.  Next comes an experiment you can do at home demonstrating the same principles.  Occasionally fun facts and other extras are thrown in.  Each problem is categorized by topic and difficulty level.  While you may not make a math lover out of the number averse by handing them this book, at the very least it will illustrate practical applications for those who claim they'll never use math in real life.  The scenarios are far more whimsical and entertaining than the traditional word problem and should hold more interest as a result.  The graphic layout helps a lot in this regard as well.  Every page packs a visual punch.  Teachers and tutors would do well to keep this book on hand, and parents should take note if their children need extra practice or love working with numbers.

The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math is published by Workman Publishing and retails for $12.95 (hardcover).  I bought my copy with my very own money.  You can get yours at Left Bank today!

Join us at Left Bank Books--Central West End on Tuesday, May 1, at 4:30 p.m. for After School Experiments with Sean Connolly!  Mr. Connolly will be demonstrating principles from all of his books.  If you can't join us for the event, call the store at 314-367-6731 x. 1 to reserve your signed copy.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey with a children's version at Teach Mentor Texts.

This week I finished Disney After Dark, the first book in the Kingdom Keepers series, by Ridley Pearson in preparation for his author event.  Then I started Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt in preparation for the May meeting of Writers Read reading group.

In picture book land, I read the following books as part of order prep for Penguin:
The Hueys in The New Sweater by Oliver Jeffers
Flight of the Last Dragon by Robert Burleigh, illustrated by Mary GrandPre
Christmastime by Alison Jay
The Amazing Hamweenie by Patty Bowman
Baby Penguins Everywhere! by Melissa Guion
Llama Llama Time to Share by Anna Dewdney
Make a Wish Bear by Greg Foley
Too Tall Houses by Gianna Marino
Brave Squish Rabbit by Katherine Battersby
Ready or Not, Here Comes Scout! by Jill Abramson and Jane O'Connor, illustrated by Deborah Melmon
Max and Ruby's Treasure Hunt by Rosemary Wells
But I've Used All of My Pocket Change by Lauren Child
Dangerously Ever After by Dashka Slater, illustrated by Valeria Docampo
Apple Farmer Annie by Monica Wellington
Marvin Makes Music by Marvin Hamlisch, illustrated by Jim Madsen
Pancho Claus by Jose-Luis Orozco, illustrated by Ashley Wolff
Colorful Dreamer: The Story of Artist Henri Matisse by Marjorie Blain Parker, illustrated by Holly Berry
Rabbit's Snow Dance as told by James and Joseph Bruchac, illustrated by Jeff Newman
The Yuckiest, Stinkiest, Best Valentine Ever by Brenda Ferber, illustrated by Tedd Arnold
The Three Ninja Pigs by Corey Rosen Schwartz, illustrated by Dan Santat
Bully by Patricia Polacco
Mossy by Jan Brett
Have Fun, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell, illustrated by David Catrow
Tea Cakes for Tosh by Kelly Starling Lyons, illustrated by E.B. Lewis
The Birds of Bethlehem by Tomie dePaola
There Was a Tree by Rachel Isadora
Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis
The Further Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson, inspired by the original tales of Beatrix Potter, illustrated by Eleanor Taylor
Cork and Fuzz: No Fooling by Dori Chacanos, illustrated by Lisa McCue
Becoming a Ballerina: A Nutcracker Story by Lisa Friedman and Mary Dowdle
Electric Ben: The Amazing Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin by Robert Byrd

Next week I will finish Okay for Now and continue the Kingdom Keepers series with Disney at Dawn.

What are you reading?

Friday, April 27, 2012

Friday News Round-Up

News from the store:
--Check out our ReadMOB video from World Book Night, including student groups from two local schools.

--Join us at Missouri Athletic Club on Saturday, April 28, at 9:00 a.m. for the Assistance League Authors Brunch with Richard Paul Evans and Carol Ferring Shepley.  Mr. Evans is the author of several children's and young adult books that will be available for purchase and signing.

--Join us at Left Bank Books--Central West End on Tuesday, May 1, at 4:30 p.m. for After School Experiments with Sean Connolly.  Mr. Connolly will perform science and mathematical experiments from his books, including his latest, The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math.

News from the publishing world:
--Winners were announced of the PubWest Book Design Awards.  They include:
Children's/YA Illustrated
Gold Award:  Press Here by Herve Tullet
Silver Award:  Dream Big Little Pig by Kristi Yamaguchi, illustrated by Tim Bowers
Bronze Award (tie):  Curious Critters by David FitzSimmons and Right Where You Are Now by Lisa Montierth, illustrated by Ashley Burke
Children's/YA Non-Illustrated
Gold Award:  Sally's Bones by MacKenzie Candenhead, illustrated by T.S. Spookytooth
Silver Award:  Huber Hill and the Dead Man's Treasure by B.K. Bostick
Bronze Award:  Spartacus and the Circus of Shadows by Molly E. Johnson

--Tickets are now on sale for the Children's Art Auction and Reception at BookExpo America, sponsored by the ABC Children's Group of the American Booksellers Association.

--Bookmasters is now distributing Pearson Mexico's Spanish-language educational titles for middle and high school students.

--Lois Duncan's novel Down a Dark Hall has been optioned as a feature film by Fickle Fish Films, the production company run by Stephenie Meyer and Megan Hibbetts.

--Winners were announced for the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes.  They include a Young Adult Literature prize for The Big Crunch by Pete Hautman.

--Macmillan announced that by July, all e-books published by Tor Teen, among other imprints, will be DRM (digital rights management)-free, allowing them to be read across multiple devices without reformatting.

--Harry Potter e-books are now available in French, Italian, German and Spanish through Pottermore.

--Finalists were announced for the Southern Independent Book Awards.  They include:
Children
Always Neverland by Zoe Barton
Animalogy: Animal Analogies by Marianne Berkes, illustrated by Cathy Morrison
Bigger Than a Bread Box by Laurel Snyder
Jo MacDonald Saw a Pond by Mary Quattlebaum, illustrated by Laura J. Bryant
Young Adult
The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan
Darwen Arkwright and the Peregrine Pact by A.J. Hartley
The Magnolia League by Katie Crouch
Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley

--New images were released from The Twilight Saga:  Breaking Dawn--Part 2, the film based on Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer.

--Walter Dean Myers received the N.Y.C. Literary Honor for children's literature.

via Shelf Awareness.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Life isn't easy for Junior, growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation.  He's poor, he's surrounded by alcohol abuse, and he's been ostracized by the tribe since transferring to the white school in the next town.  But he's determined to use his cartooning, his basketball skills and his relationships with his friends and family to succeed despite the odds.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie with art by Ellen Forney was a World Book Night selection for 2012.

This engaging semi-autobiographical tale will give kids of all ethnic backgrounds plenty to relate to while showing them what it's like to grow up Native American.  Alexie pulls no punches, giving us a world full of violence, tragedy, profanity and disappointment.  But he also gives us a good deal of hope.  No matter what Junior is faced with (and he's faced with a lot), it never takes him long to regain his sense of humor and focus on improving his own situation.  Much of that humor is found in the illustrations, which use a variety of styles as Junior experiments with his craft.  Not only does this book fill a (still too large) gap in literature featuring Native American experiences, but it will give every reader something to connect with.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian is published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and retails for $11.99 (paperback).  I bought mine with my very own money.  You can get yours at Left Bank today!

Join us Wednesday, April 25, at 7:30 p.m. at Left Bank Books--Central West End for the April meeting of Teen Reads, a reading group for ages 12 to 18, when we will discuss The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Crinkleroot's Guide to Giving Back to Nature

Helping the environment may seem like a big job, but there are plenty of little things you can do to make a difference, whether in your backyard, or camping in the deep woods.

Crinkleroot's Guide to Giving Back to Nature by Jim Arnosky is my Earth Day pick.  It's also my April book for Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge 2012.

Many children are fascinated by nature and the animals who live in it.  Here Crinkleroot gives us a great introduction on how to enjoy the outdoors without harming it.  The tips range from simple (cleaning your water shoes between wading trips) to those that need help from an adult (starting a backyard compost pile).  In between tips in-book activities, like counting the number of species on a page.  Fans of David the Gnome should relate well to Crinkleroot and his partnership with all forest life.  Kids will easily find ways to apply his lessons to their next hike or simply out in the garden.

Crinkleroot's Guide to Giving Back to Nature is published by Putnam Juvenile and retails for $17.99 (hardcover).  I read an advance readers copy provided by the publisher (although this review was not solicited or compensated).  You can get yours at Left Bank today!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey with a children's version at Teach Mentor Texts.

This week, I finished The Fault in Our Stars by John Green for Forever Young Adult's book club.  Then I moved on to The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math by Sean Connolly in preparation for his author visit.  Then came Summer of the Gypsy Moths by Sara Pennypacker in preparation for her author event.  Finally, I started Disney After Dark, the first book in Ridley Pearson's Kingdom Keepers series in preparation for his author visit.

In picture books, I read Little Bird by Germano Zullo and re-read Grandpa Green by Lane Smith (previously reviewed).

Next week, I'll continue reading Disney After Dark, then move on to the next book in the series, Disney at Dawn.

What are you reading?

Also, it's World Book Night!  I've got The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (previously reviewed).  Pam, the other half of Left Bank's children's department, has Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo (previously reviewed).  What are you giving away?

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday News Round-Up

News from the store:

--Wednesday, April 18, the River City Readers in Ms. Dixon and Ms. Evans's classrooms were treated to a visit from author Barbara Wright, after which they received a copy of her new book, Crow (previously reviewed), which Ms. Wright signed for them.  We also have signed copies of Crow available at both stores and online, while supplies last.

--World Book Night is Monday, April 23.  Join us for a ReadMOB at 12:30 p.m. on the steps of the Gateway Arch.  This year, the books given away will include Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo (previously reviewed), The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (previously reviewed), The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (previously reviewed).

--Join us on Wednesday, April 25, at 7:30 p.m. at Left Bank Books--Central West End for the April meeting of Teen Reads, a book group for ages 12 to 18, where we will discuss The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie.  May's Teen Read, Little Brother by Cory Doctorow, will be 20% off at both Left Bank Books locations and online starting after the meeting and continuing through the month of May.

News from the publishing world:

--Pottermore, the Harry Potter-themed web portal, opened to the general public on Saturday after a lengthy beta-testing period.

--The Moth Diaries, a film based on the young adult novel of the same name by Rachel Klein, opened to limited release on April 20.

--Winners were announced for the 2012 Minnesota Book Awards, including:
Children's Literature
BookSpeak! Poems about Books by Laura Purdie Salas
Young People's Literature
With or Without You by Brian Farrey

--An e-reading platform for kids, Ruckus Reader, was launched by Ruckus Media.

--Winners were announced for the 2012 Canadian Library Association's awards.  They include:
CLA Book of the Year for Children
The Whole Truth by Kit Pearson
Honorable Mentions
Dragon Seer's Gift by Janet McNaughton
That Boy Red by Rachna Gilmore
Young Adult Book Award
All Good Children by Catherine Austen
Honor Books
Karma by Cathy Ostlere (previously reviewed)
This Dark Endeavor: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein by Kenneth Oppel
Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award
My Name Is Elizabeth! by Annika Dunklee, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe
Honorable Mentions
Small Saul by Ashley Spires
Migrant by Maxine Trottier, illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (previously reviewed)

via Shelf Awareness.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Crow

Wilmington, North Carolina, is a great place to grow up, or it seems that way to Moses.  Since the abolition of slavery, the black population has gained respect and now his father is an alderman who writes for a local newspaper, while his friend Lewis's family lives in the rich part of town.  But there are some in town who don't like the changes, and will stop at nothing short of violence to return to the way things were.

Crow by Barbara Wright our latest River City Readers book.

This historical novel covers a time not focused on much in fiction:  The generation after slavery.  In telling the story leading up to the Wilmington riots, rather than seeing the former slaves instantly put in a position of oppression, we see blacks start to gain a foothold in society before the extreme backlash of the white supremacists.  Aside from providing an education on a little-seen piece of history, there is a compelling domestic story here.  Moses has a happy family, but plenty of strife is brought to their door.  The characters are all well-developed and dynamic and Moses makes a likable and relatable narrator.  My bet is on seeing this book again come Newbery time.

Crow is published by Random House Books for Young Readers and retails for $16.99 (hardcover).  I bought my copy with my very own money.  You can get yours at Left Bank Books today!

Join us Wednesday, April 18, at 7:00 p.m. at Left Bank Books Central West End for a reading and discussion of Crow with Barbara Wright!  If you are not able to attend, you can still call the store at 314-367-6731 x. 1 to reserve your signed copy!

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Great Cake Mystery: Precious Ramotswe's Very First Case

When sweets start to go missing at Precious Ramotswe's school, blame falls on one of her classmates.  But Precious isn't so sure.  And what's an aspiring detective to do but investigate?

The Great Cake Mystery: Precious Ramotswe's Very First Case by Alexander McCall Smith and illustrated by Iain McIntosh is the first No. 1 Ladies' Detective book for beginning readers.

This is an innocent little mystery that will definitely appeal to the Cam Jansen and Encyclopedia Brown fans out there.  Precious is a tough heroine, full of ingenuity.  Her desire to get all the facts before passing judgement and ability to prove her theories to others rather than just asking them to believe her provide nice lessons.  The African setting is educational as well, offering a glimpse of a culture not covered very often in early chapter books.  It also provides an opportunity for the gorgeous woodcut-style illustrations, rendering in striking black and red.  Fans of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency would do well to introduce their children to the series early.

The Great Cake Mystery: Precious Ramotswe's Very First Case is published by Anchor and retails for $6.99 (paperback).  I got my complimentary advance readers copy from the publisher (although this review was not solicited or otherwise compensated).  You can get yours at Left Bank Books today!

Join us Monday, April 16, at Chaminade College Preparatory School at 7:00 p.m. for Maryville Talks Books presents Alexander McCall Smith.  He will be speaking about his new novel, The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection, but many other titles, including The Great Cake Mystery, will be available.  Get your tickets at Brown Paper Tickets.  If you cannot attend, but would like to reserve a signed copy of one of his books, call Left Bank Books at 314-367-6731.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey with a children's version at Teach Mentor Texts.

This week I finished Crow by Barbara Wright in preparation for her author event.  Then I moved on to The Chaos by Nalo Hopkinson, my April book for the 2012 Debut Author Challenge.  I'm currently reading The Fault in Our Stars by John Green for Forever Young Adult's book club.

Next week, I'll be finishing The Fault in Our Stars, then launching into The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math by Sean Connelly in preparation for his author visit.

What are you reading?

Friday, April 13, 2012

Friday News Round-Up

News from the store:
--On Wednesday, April 18, join us for the April meeting of the Current Affairs reading group at 12:00 p.m. at Left Bank Books--Downtown at which we will discuss Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson (previously reviewed).

--Also on Wednesday, April 18, join us at Left Bank Books--Central West End at 7:00 p.m. for a reading and signing of Crow by Barbara Wright.  If you are unable to attend, you can call the store at 314-367-6731 x.1 to reserve your personalized signed copy.

--We now have signed copies of two of Antony John's books:  Five Flavors of Dumb (previously reviewed) and Thou Shalt Not Road Trip (previously reviewed) available at both Left Bank Books locations.

News from the publishing world:
--Harry Potter e-book sales topped $1.6 million in their first three days of sales.

--Winners of the 2012 Indie Choice Book Awards were announced, including:
Young Adult
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
E.B. White Read-Aloud Award
Picture Book
I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen (previously reviewed)
Middle Reader (tie)
The Apothecary by Maile Meloy, illustrated by Ian Schoenherr (previously reviewed)
Wildwood by Colin Meloy, illustrated by Carson Ellis

via Shelf Awareness.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Speak

It's Melinda's freshman year of high school, and things are not going well.  Her friends have stopped talking to her since she called the cops on a party over the summer.  Now she's slipped into a deep depression and refuses to talk unless it's absolutely necessary.  But is there something more that's bothering her?

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson is a 1999 National Book Award finalist.

This book is narrated by Melinda, giving us a deeply sympathetic and believable look into the mindset of severe depression.  Much of the focus of discussion has been the inciting incident, but this really is a book about mental health.  (I won't reveal Melinda's secret, on the off-chance someone might not know what it is.  It seems this is one of those stories that people forget contains a dramatic reveal.)   Because we are only getting a first-person account, those who have trouble identifying with Melinda's paralyzing thoughts may benefit from a discussion or additional resources.  Still this is an excellent teaching tool in addition to quality literature. Although it is nearing 13 years old, the writing doesn't feel the least bit dated or stale.  It's easy to see why this is regarded as a modern classic.

Speak is published by Square Fish and retails for $9.99 (paperback).  I bought my copy with my very own money.  You can get yours at Left Bank Books today!

Join us at Left Bank Books--Downtown on Wednesday, April 18, at 12:00 p.m. for the April meeting of the Current Affairs reading group, who will be discussing Speak!  Also, like all reading group picks, Speak will be 20% off at both Left Bank Books locations and online for the month of April!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

The woods in winter have captured imaginations for generations, including a certain noted poet.

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost, illustrated by Susan Jeffers, is my pick for Poetry Month.

This is an excellent introduction for youngsters to one of the most well-known American poems.  The lines are divided up, one or two on a page, to make the whole easy to digest.  The great detail and realism of the illustrations recall the New England winters of Currier and Ives.  They also serve to further explain the lines, making the book a lovely lesson in poetry interpretation.  A particularly nice extra is the multi-layered vellum-coated cover.

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening is published by Dutton Juvenile and retails for $16.99 (hardcover).  I read my copy by picking it up from the shelves for a few minutes.  You can get yours at Left Bank Books today!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey with a children's version at Teach Mentor Texts.

This was a rather slow week, reading-wise.  I finished Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson for the Current Affairs reading group's April meeting.  Then I started Crow by Barbara Wright for her author visit.

In the world of picture books, I read Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale and Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!, both by Mo Willems.  I also got the opportunity to hear Mr. Willems read The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? and Listen to My Trumpet! at his author event.

Next week, I'll be finishing Crow, then moving on to The Chaos by Nalo Hopkinson, my 2012 Debut Author Challenge book for April.

What are you reading?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Friday News Round-Up

News from the Store:
--The River City Readers in Ms. Smith and Ms. Hendley's classes at Washington Montessori Elementary School received  I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen (previously reviewed) for their latest book on Thursday, April 5.


--Join us at Left Bank Books--Downtown on Saturday, April 7, at 10:30 a.m. for Downtown Easter Egg Hunt!  Kids will be led by Miss Jonesey on a hunt through the store (aided by their favorite storybook characters) while adults enjoy complimentary coffee and breakfast.

--Tuesday, April 10, at 7:00 p.m., join us at MICDS's Eliot Chapel for a discussion for parents and daughters with Haley Fitzpatrick about her new book, The Drama Years: Real Girls Talk about Surviving Middle School--Bullies, Brands, Body Image, and More.

--Thursday, April 12, at 7:00 p.m., join us at St. Louis Public Library--Schlafly Branch for a reading and signing of Antony John's new novel, Thou Shalt Not Road Trip (previously reviewed).

--Join us on Thursday, April 12, at 6:00 p.m at Windows Off Washington for the Voices for Children Be the Difference Benefit with Judge Hatchett, where she will sign copies of her new book, Dare to Take Charge: How to Live Your Life with Purpose.

--Spike was named Bookstore Cat of the Year by Book Expo America.  (Please note the date on this release.)

News from the publishing world:
--A trailer was released for Rise of the Guardians, a Dreamworks Animation film based on the Guardians of Childhood series by William Joyce.

--The American Society of Journalists and Authors announced the winners of the ASJA Awards, including two honorable mentions in the Children's/Young Adult category:  Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony: A Friendship That Changed the World by Penny Colman and Charles Dickens and the Street Children of London by Andrea Warren.

--The 2011 Book of the Year Awards, sponsored by ForeWord Reviews, were announced, including:
Juvenile Nonfiction
A Stranger at Home: A True Story by Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton, illustrated by Liz Amini-Holmes
Around One Log: Chipmunks, Spiders, and Creepy Insiders by Anthony D. Fredericks, illustrated by Jennifer DiRubbio
Curious Critters by David FitzSimmons
Freedom Train North: Stories of the Underground Railroad in Wisconsin by Julia Pferdehirt
How to Talk to an Autistic Kid by David Stefanski
In the Bag!: Margaret Knight Wraps It Up by Monica Kulling, illustrated by David Parkins
Migrant Mother: How a Photograph Defined the Great Depression by Don Nardo
Native Defenders of the Environment by Vincent Schilling
New Kid, New Scene: A Guide to Moving and Switching Schools by Debbie Glasser, Ph.D., and Emily Schenck
Please Read (if at all possible): The Girl Project by Kate Engelbrecht
Shannen and the Dream for a School by Janet Wilson
Triassic Hall: Building the Triassic Exhibit from the Ground Up by Jaenet Guggenheim and Dr. Spencer G. Lucas
Well Earth Well Me! by Kenda Swartz Pepper
Young Adult Nonfiction
"Scribbling Women": True Stories from Astonishing Lives by Marthe Jocelyn
Beyond Bullets: A Photo Journal of Afghanistan by Rafal Gerszak and Dawn Hunter
Five Thousand Years of Slavery by Marjorie Gann and Janet Willen
Law Made Fun through Harry Potter's Adventures by Karen Morris, Esq. and Bradley S. Carroll, Esq.
The Gifted Teen Survival Guide: A Teen Handbook by Judy Galbraith and Jim Delisle
USS Midway: America's Shield by Scott McGaugh
World without Fish by Mark Kurlansky, illustrated by Frank Stockton
Children's Picture Book
1, 2, 3, Si!: A Numbers Book in English and Spanish by San Antonio Museum of Art and the San Antonio Public Library Foundation
Dear Baobab by Cheryl Foggo, illustrated by Qin Leng
E-Mergency! by Tom Lichtenheld and Ezra Fields-Meyer
Flip-O-Storic by Sara Ball
Francis Woke Up Early by Josephine Nobisso, illustrated by Maureen Hyde
Good Fortune in a Wrapping Cloth by Joan Schoettler, illustrated by Jessica Lanan
Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
I Is for Ireland by Viki Pidgeon
I See the Sun in Afghanistan by Dedie King, illustrated by Judith Inglese
Lola's Fandango by Anna Witte, illustrated by Micha Archer
Night by Melessa Henderson
Press Here by Herve Tullet
Snowball's Antarctic Adventures by Tim Ostermeyer
Snutt the Ift by Helen Ward
Sora and the Cloud by Felicia Hoshino
Juvenile Fiction
...Walking Along...: Plains Indian Trickster Stories by Paul Goble
Finding Faith by C.E. Edmonson
Ghost Messages by Jacqueline Guest
Jingo Fever by Stephanie Golightly Lowden
Latasha and the Little Red Tornado by Michael Scotto, illustrated by Evette Gabriel
Milagro of the Spanish Bean Pot by Emerita Romero-Anderson, illustrations by Randall Pijoan
Rex Riders by J.P. Carlson, illustrated by Jim Calafiore
Rufus Steele 1943 by Susan C. Turner and Warren W. Teets
Stones for My Father by Trilby Kent
Super Cowboy Rides by Daris Howard
The Cellar Door by Brett Gadbois
The Woman Who Lived with Wolves and Other Stories from the Tipi by Paul Goble
When Kids Take Over NASA by Carole Marsh
Young Adult Fiction
Anew by Chelsea Fine
Brooklyn, Burning by Steve Brezenoff
Drummer Girl by Karen Bass
First Descent by Pam Withers
Mystery of the Tempest by Sam Cameron
Pick-Up Game: A Full Day of Court edited by Marc Aronson and Charles R. Smith, Jr.
Sabrehilt by Maxwell McCann
Shanghaied by David Paul Collins
Skyship Academy: The Pearl Wars by Nick James
Stealing Kevin's Heart by M. Scott Carter
The Dragon Turn by Shane Peacock
The Forgotten Locket by Lisa Mangum
The Twelfth Stone by Jana Laiz
Ugly to Start With by John Michael Cummings

--A new teaser video on Pottermore was released.

--Developments were made in the film adaptation of Lauren Oliver's Before I Fall.

--Shortlists were announced for the Reading the West Book Awards including the Children's category:
The Dragon of Cripple Creek by Troy Howell
Milagro of the Spanish Bean Pot by Emerita Romero-Anderson, illustrated by Randall Pijoan
Missing on Superstition Mountain by Elise Broach and Antonio Javier Caparo
Saga of the Sioux by Dee Brown and Dwight Jon Zimmerman
Wagons Ho! by George Hallowell and Joan Holub

--Barnes and Noble agreed to return Marshall Cavendish titles to its shelves at the request of The Authors' Guild.

--The Bram Stoker Awards, given by the Horror Writers Association, were announced, including a tie for Superior Achievement in Young Adult Novel:  The Screaming Season by Nancy Holder and Dust and Decay by Jonathan Maberry.

via Shelf Awareness.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Thou Shalt Not Road Trip

Sixteen-year-old Luke has written a book that's taking the Christian world by storm.  It tells the story of his path to enlightenment, but is he really enlightened after all?  He'll find out when his book tour with his brother suddenly includes Fran, his former youth group friend who now sports piercings, tattoos and purple hair.

Thou Shalt Not Road Trip is the second novel from local author Antony John.

Readers who enjoyed the journey of self-discovery and field trips to rock star's homes in Five Flavors of Dumb (previously reviewed) will find much to like about this book.  Luke's book tour takes him to numerous sights along Route 66, but also toward discovering his own motivations in alienating his old friend and writing his book.  There are enough little mysteries and things that don't add up to keep you guessing, although I doubt the average reader will be as clueless and trusting about them as Luke.  This story may have the most resonance for those who grew up in Sunday school and church youth groups, however it is far from preachy, so the religious aspects shouldn't stop anyone else from reading.

Thou Shalt Not Road Trip is published by Dial and retails for $16.99 (hardcover).  I got my advance readers copy complimentary from the publisher.  You can pre-order yours at Left Bank Books today!

Join us Thursday, April 12th, at 7:00 p.m. at St. Louis Public Library--Schlafly Branch, 225 N. Euclid, 63108, for a reading and book signing with Antony John.  If you aren't able to join us, you can come to Left Bank Books or call 314-367-6731 to order a copy to be signed in absentia.

Monday, April 2, 2012

The Duckling Gets a Cookie!?

The Duckling gets a cookie.  Pigeon does not like this turn of events.

The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? by Mo Willems is the latest in the Pigeon series of picture books.

Like the other Pigeon books before it, this is a charmingly simple account of Pigeon's outrage and indignation that the Duckling can get a cookie just by asking politely.  The only words are dialog in speech bubbles with the figures as the only illustrations.  The lack of a background or narration highlight the wit and humor in the writing and the astounding amount of expressiveness captured in these simple line drawings of birds.  The attitude of the title is found throughout, making this a fun read-aloud for those willing to ham it up.

The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? is published by Hyperion and retails for $15.99 (hardcover).  I bought my copy with my very own money.  You can get yours at Left Bank Books today!

Mo Willems will be reading from and signing The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? as well as his other books Monday, April 2, at 6:00 p.m. at the Danforth Chapel at MICDS.  This is a ticketed event.  A small amount of tickets are still available at Left Bank Books--Central West End.  If you are not able to get tickets to the event, you may still join the signing line after the talk or purchase a book to have signed in absentia by calling 314-367-6731.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme hosted by Book Journey, with a children's version at Teach Mentor Texts.

This week I finished My Brother Sam Is Dead by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier.  Then I moved on to Thou Shalt Not Road Trip by Antony John is preparation for his author event.  Next came the decidedly very not children's book Beaver Street: A History of Modern Pornography by Robert Rosen in preparation for his author visit.  I'm currently reading Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson in preparation for the April meeting of the Current Affairs reading group.

In picture book land, I had a few random ones:
The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? by Mo Willems
The Alphabet by Monique Felix
The Wind by Monique Felix

And some ordering for Simon and Schuster:
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
Don't Forget, God Bless Our Troops by Jill Biden, illustrated by Raul Colon
Oh No, Little Dragon! by Jim Averbeck
Hush, Little Monster by Denis Markell, illustrated by Melissa Iwai
Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Peter Brown
The Boo! Book by Nathaniel Lachenmeyer, illustrated by Nicoletta Ceccoli
Marco Goes to School by Roz Chast
1-2-3 Peas by Keith Baker
Pirateria: The Wonderful Plunderful Pirate Emporium by Calef Brown
Can I Just Take a Nap? by Ron Rauss, illustrated by Rob Shepperson
One of a Kind by Ariel S. Winter, illustrated by David Hitch
Go, Go, Grapes!: A Fruit Chant by April Pulley Sayre
I, Too, Am America by Langston Hughes, illustrated by Bryan Collier
Hop, Hop, Jump! by Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
The Cat in the Rhinestone Suit by John Carter Cash, illustrated by Scott Nash
Dream Big: Michael Jordan and the Pursuit of Olympic Gold by Deloris Jordan, illustrated by Barry Root
Two Little Monkeys by Mem Fox, illustrated by Jill Barton

And Fujii Associates:
I'm Not Tired Yet! by Marianne Richmond
It's a Big World, Little Pig! by Kristi Yamaguchi, illustrated by Tim Bowers
Isabella: Girl on the Go by Jennifer Fosberry, illustrated by Mike Litwin
Zach Gets Frustrated by William Mulcahy, illustrated by Darren McKee
Zach Apologizes by William Mulcahy, illustrated by Darren McKee
One Sunny Day by Tammi Salzano, illustrated by Hannah Wood
Uh-Oh! Oh No! by Ann Hodgman, illustrated by Lucy Barnard
My Friend Fred by Hiawyn Oram, illustrated by Rosie Reeve
Mole's Babies by David Bedford, illustrated by Rosalind Beardshaw
The Bump by Mij Kelly, illustrated by Nicholas Allan
Scary Mary by Paula Bowles
Bustle in the Bushes by Giles Andreae, illustrated by David Wojtowycz
Boris and the Wrong Shadow by Leigh Hodgkinson
At the Boardwalk by Kelly Ramsdell Fineman, illustrated by Monica Armino
My Dad! by Steve Smallman and Sean Julian
Mouse and the Moon by M. Christina Butler, illustrated by Tina Macnaughton
Just One More! by Tracey Corderoy and Alison Edgson
Very Special Friends by Jane Chapman
Monty and Milli: The Totally Amazing Magic Trick by Tracey Corderoy and Tim Warnes
Super-Duper Dudley! by Sue Mongredien and Caroline Pedler
Duck Says Don't! by Alison Ritchie and Hannah George
Deep Sea Dive by Salina Yoon
Space Walk by Salina Yoon
Tickle Time! by Sandra Boynton
The Land of Dinosaurs created by Peter Lippman, text by Louise A. Gikow
Baby Faces: A Book of Happy, Silly, Funny Babies by Kate Merritt
Baby Babble: A Book of Baby's First Words by Kate Merritt
Bawk and Roll by Tammi Sauer, illustrated by Dan Santat
Whales by Kim Norman, illustrated by Carol Schwartz
Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Animals by Kim Norman, illustrated by Julius Csotonyi
First Prayers: A Celebration of Faith and Love by Troy Howell
Don't Copy Me! by Jonathan Allen
Mammoth and Me by Algy Craig Hall
Where's the Dinosaur? by Keith Moseley
Builder Goose: It's Construction Rhyme Time! by Boni Ashburn, illustrated be Sergio de Giorgi
Sign Language ABC by Lora Heller
Springtime with Bunny by Lynn Plourde, illustrated by Laura Logan
Snakes Up Close! by Thea Feldman
Dinosaur Pets by Kathleen Kudlinski, illustrated by Julius Csotonyi
Lamb's Easter Surprise by Christine Taylor-Butler, illustrated by Cathy Ann Johnson
Kiki's Blankie by Janie Bynum
All Creatures Great and Small by Naoko Stoop
Easter Babies: A Springtime Counting Book by Joy N. Hulme, illustrated by Dan Andreasen
Time for a Hug by Phillis Gershator and Mim Green, illustrated by David Walker

Next week I will finish up Speak and move on to Crow by Barbara Wright in preparation for her author visit.  (So many author visits!)

What are you reading?