The "BATSmobile"! Bats at the Library was a big hit at our house, so we were excited to see the new follow-up, Bats at the Ballgame. Author and illustrator Brian Lies has been touring around and promoting the book in this brand-new "BATSmobile":
"Brown Bear and Polar Bear Go Back to Basics." School Library Journal has the lowdown on taking a couple of legendary picture books--Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?--and rereleasing them as beginning readers. SLJ interviewed Laura Godwin, the publisher of Henry Holt Books for Young Readers, on the history behind these classics: "Brown Bear quickly become a word-of-mouth success with educators, who began requesting that the title be made more widely available. Godwin states that in the resulting picture book edition, the placement of the text was changed 'to make it more of a lap book "guessing game." The assumption was that in this new format, the story would be read to a child by an adult rather than read independently by the child himself.' ... According to Godwin, the 'My First Reader' versions reflect a decision to re-create the titles in their original form and for their original purpose: to encourage reading success."
The Kneebone Boy review. Jen Robinson is liking The Kneebone Boy, "a darkly humorous middle grade mystery/adventure sure to appeal to fans of the Lemony Snicket books and Lois Lowry's The Willoughbys." ("I think that The Kneebone Boy will keep kids guessing until the last page--and that's a very good thing. I enjoyed The Kneebone Boy, and I recommend it for middle grade readers and up, boys and girls.")
"Speak Under Attack, Again." It's a perfect story just in time for Banned Books Week: Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak was recently attacked by a Missouri State University professor as "immoral, filthy, and soft pornography." School Library Journal has an interview with Anderson, in which she talks about the response to her subsequent op-ed in Missouri's News-Leader.
"Goosebumps" gets a screenwriter. According to Risky Business, the screenwriter behind Red Dawn and Disturbia is "carving a niche for himself writing movies about kids in jeopardy": Carl Ellsworth is going to write the upcoming movie based on R.L. Stine's hugely popular "Goosebumps" series.
"What Are They Reading for Fun?" Speaking of SLJ: It's time for another installment of their great boots-on-the-ground reports from librarians in the reading trenches. Some of the current "reading for fun" choices aren't too surprising--like Mockingjay, the final installment in the "Hunger Games" series--but these librarians also spotted Louise Rennison's Are These My Basoomas I See Before Me?, Kenneth Oppel's Airborn (including on audio), and Lindsey Sanna's nonfiction The Game (Hip-Hop).
Green Eggs and Ham video contest. Want to win a year's supply of ham? Or how about just $2,000? Check out the
Green Eggs and Ham 50th Anniversary Video Contest, which has begun with this cute entry: