September 18, 2018

Let's Talk Illustrators #82: Duncan Tonatiuh

Given the current political climate it's no surprise that there are many books being published that speak to the unfair treatment of immigrants and the need for legal reform. Duncan Tonatiuh's Undocumented: A Worker's Fight does that in spades, but the format of the book—a leporello—seems to drive the point home even further. In a standard picture book readers can flip pages and forget what they've seen previously, but with a leporello at least half of the story is always in view at a time. For those unfamiliar with the term, leporellos are accordion-style books that are only bound at the very edges, so when readers open them they stretch far and wide, providing at least half the story at a time. In lieu of retreading familiar ground, I suggest you check out my leporello post from a years ago here, but right now, let's take a closer look at Undocumented.


September 16, 2018

Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall


It turns out the tale of "Snow White" is one that has crept up on me. I don't think I realized how much I appreciated the story––namely it's tone and aesthetic possibilities––until I really started looking at how different illustrators render the tale: it's much more open to interpretation than one would think. Like with the story of "Little Red Riding Hood," there is a built in color so to speak of red for the apple, and watching illustrators take that one detail and apply their own twists is fascinating. Here are my favorites published within the last ten or so years.

Click on these book covers to poke around, and don't forget, you can see all of my favorite fairytales here!

     

September 15, 2018

Crushes of the Week: September 2-8 & 9-15, 2018

I didn't get a chance to post my crushes last week, so here are this week's and last week's!

Last week's crushes:
  1. Archie and the Bear by Zanni Louise and David Mackintosh (Clarion Books, September 2018)
  2. The Day War Came by Nicola Davies and Rebecca Cobb (Candlewick, September 2018)
  3. Samurai Scarecrow: A Very Ninja Halloween by Rubin Pingk (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, July 2018)
  4. I Feel Teal by Lauren Rille and Aimée Sicuro (Beach Lane Books, July 2018)
  5. An Unlikely Ballerina by Krystyna Poray Goddu and Cosei Kawa (Kar-Ben Publishing, August 2018)
  6. The Girl with a Mind for Math: The Story of Raye Montague by Julia Finley Mosca and Daniel Rieley (Innovation Press, September 2018)
      

And this week's crushes:
  1. Food Hide and Sneak by Bastien Contraire (Phaidon Press, August 2018)
  2. The Street Beneath My Feet by Charlotte Guillain and Yuval Zommer (words & pictures, March 2017)
  3. Hats of Faith by Medeia Cohan and Sarah Walsh (Chronicle Books, August 2018)
  4. If Polar Bears Disappeared by Lily Williams (Roaring Brook Press, August 2018)
  5. Cat Wishes by Calista Brill and Kenard Pak (HMH Books for Young Readers, July 2018)
  6. The Steves by Morag Hood (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, September 2018)
     

September 13, 2018

THE HOUSE OF LOST AND FOUND

The House of Lost and Found by Martin Widmark and Emilia Dziubak is a quiet story about finding love after loss and taking care of ourselves.


September 11, 2018

Let's Talk Illustrators #81: Sandra Dieckmann

Talking to author-illustrator Sandra Dieckmann was an absolute delight for me. You might recognize Sandra's work from her first book Leaf, which published a few years ago, but for those of you just discovering her now, you're in for a treat with her follow-up The Dog That Ate the World. This was a particularly special interview for me because I saw a lot of my own personal processes reflected in Sandra's, so I'm going to lead with little preamble and just let you get started reading. Enjoy!


September 7, 2018

First Friday 5: Becoming

As many here in the United States go back to school, it's tough not to think about what our children and students will become when they get older. What events will make them who they are meant to become? Whether it's becoming who you were meant to be all along, becoming a trusted ally, or even becoming someone entirely different altogether, these five comics ask and answer the question of what it's like to go through a life-altering transformation and come out the other side as someone new whose purpose has somehow changed. Some of the characters in these books are at the start of their journeys, some are in the middle, and some go through full metamorphoses by the end, but each starts as one person and becomes another, accepting all of the challenges along the way.


September 4, 2018

Let's Talk Illustrators #80: Van Thanh Rudd

Today Australian street artist, sculptor, and now children's book illustrator Van Thanh Rudd stops by to talk about his picture book debut The Patchwork Bike, written by Maxine Beneba Clarke. A known activist, Van's picture book illustrations carry over the soul and energy of his activist work (like his murals) and provide accessible imagery for children to connect with Clarke's words. I'm excited to share here my conversation with Van about his foray into children's book illustration and what he hopes his contributions will accomplish. Enjoy! 


September 2, 2018

#kidlitpicks August Round-Up: 15 Laugh-Out-Loud Picture Books

During August, I got to choose our #KidLitPicks theme, and you know what I realized? We have never made a list of our favorite funny books! I'm talking about the books we can barely read aloud because we're laughing so hard and the books with pictures so ridiculous that we can't help but giggle as we pour over the illustrations. Funny books give everyone a moment in time to be fully together, laughing about what's on the page and leaving the stress or worry of everything else behind. And they're often a good way to address serious issues that are otherwise very difficult to talk about.

Here is a list of books that make us laugh!

You know what we realized recently over at #kidlitpicks? We've never made a list of our favorite funny books! I'm talking about the books we can barely read aloud because we're laughing so hard and the books with pictures so ridiculous that we can't help but giggle as we pour over the illustrations. Funny books give everyone a moment in time to be fully together, laughing about what's on the page and leaving the stress or worry of everything else behind. And they're often a good way to address serious issues that are otherwise very difficult to talk about.

Throughout the month of August, the #KidLitPicks book club explored books that make us laugh out loud. Thanks to co-founder Mel Schuit of Let's Talk Picture Books for the theme!



September 1, 2018

Crushes of the Week: August 26-September 1, 2018

This week's crushes:
  1. Why The Face? by Jean Jullien (Phaidon Press, August 2018)
  2. The Very Last Castle by Travis Jonker and Mark Pett (Abrams Books for Young Readers, October 2018)
  3. Stop That Yawn! by Caron Levis and LeUyen Pham (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, October 2018)
  4. A Boy and a House by Maja Kastelic (Annick Press, September 2018)
  5. The Night Box by Louise Greig and Ashling Lindsay (Clarion Books, September 2018)
  6. Zola's Elephant by Randall de Sève and Pamela Zagarenski (HMH Books for Young Readers, October 2018)
  7. New York Melody by Helene Druvert (Thames & Hudson, October 2018)