From June 26th to 29th, I enjoyed the many festivities at American Library Association’s 2015 Annual Conference in San Francisco. Here are some photos with captions (click on the first photo to see the slideshow with full captions!)
Star Wars retold for Middle Grade readers — from Disney Publishing Worldwide. The four authors of the upcoming (and already published) books are: Tony DiTerlizzi, Alexandra Bracken, Adam Gidwitz, and Tom Angleberger.
My friend Maria
The screening room is a regular sized theater.
Four new books (one is already published) based on Episodes 4, 5, and 6 penned by these authors.
Tom Angleberger selecting a couple of librarians from the audience to be “the narrator” and Yoda.
We’re treated to enlarged images from Tony DiTerlizzi’s heavily illustrated retelling of all three episodes.
The authors created a well-rehearsed readers theater for us that gave us quite a good taste of what these titles will read like.
The three volumes have completely different styles and authorial voices, while keeping to the details of the canon.
After the performance, we got to tour Lucas Film Center.
And a party with photo-ops with the two very gentlemanly stormtroopers.
Chronicle Books invited us to check out their amazingly beautiful, open, and creative work space! I found out that there is an entire Industrial Design department, creating merchandise connected to the books they publish. Too fun!
4th Floor is set up as the party space.
A picture, courtesy of SLJ, of Shelley Diaz, senior review editor for SLJ and myself.
Jeffrey Brown, cartoonist/author of Vader and Son, etc.
Pyramids of macarons from
I sampled the Chai flavor brushed with gold coloring.. Yum
Ben Laramie, head of the Industrial Design department, gave us a tour!
Miniature of the floor plan for upcoming trade show Chronicle booth.
What’s inside the Chamber of Secrets?
Pieces needed for the cover design of the upcoming Chess Queen Enigma
Full of creativity and beautiful designs.
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
Catalog Covers through the years
Of course, there were many other events, sessions, workshops that I didn’t take a lot of pictures of — The Coretta Scott King Awards Breakfast, the ALSC Preconference highlighting and celebrating this year’s Honored books (Caldecott, Newbery, Sibert, Geisel, Carnegie), Newbery/Caldecott/Wilder Banquet, and the ALSC Awards ceremony (Sibert, Geisel, Carnegie, Batchelder.)
Honored Books of 2015!
Creating the book Josephine — a panel presentation
My friend Deb Taylor, honored with the Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement
Amy Crews, daughter of Wilder Award for Lifetime Achievement recipient Donald Crews — and an old friend of mine!
Junko Yokota, dear friend and Newbery committee co-member — who chaired the 2015 Caldecott Committee, on the Dais at the Banquet
Six of the 2002 Newbery Committee members got together and took a photo (JoAnn Jonas, Elizabeth Overmeyer, Deborah Taylor, Vaunda Nelson, Patty Carlton, Roxanne Feldman)
We always grumble about it being too early (7:00 a.m. on a Sunday during a long weekend of festivities and after a couple of really late night parties); we always know that once we get there, something magical will happen so all our sleepiness will be swept away: when the entire room sang Lift Every Voice and Sing together, when the morning invocation calls to attention of the importance of this award in our still trying time for African Americans, and when the award winners give their heart-felt, thought-provoking speeches.
This year felt like it was the BEST yet! From Jason Reynold’s tribute to his mother and the power of community, to Kwame Alexander’s rousing spoken words; from Kekla Magoon’s insistence of telling the world the multi-faceted truths behind the single-angled reporting of the media, to Frank Morrison’s belief of encouraging all children to be who they truly are; from Marilyn Nelson’s quiet reminder of the power of words to Christian Robinson’s (and Patricia Hruby Powell) dancing like Josephine Baker! And of course, to the dreaming and frustration and dreaming again by Jacqueline Woodson and Christopher Myers.
Jackie’s and Chris’ speeches in their printed form can be found on the Hornbook site.
Dream Keepers by Jackie and This untitled speech by Chris are must reads! Don’t miss this moving tribute to Chris by John Steptoe (new talent winner): Giant (for Christopher Myers)
That entire breakfast was at once extremely somber and electrifying. These talented African American authors and artists have joined a long line of creative souls who continue to inspire and inform young readers. Bravo!
(Christian Robinson & Patricia Hruby Powell – illustrator/author duo for Josephine even danced for us.)
Another noteworthy honoree of the day is Deb Taylor (my fellow 2002 Newbery member,) of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore for her Distinguished Services over the years! Here’s a picture of her giving her passionate speech —
and her talking to Marilyn Nelson, author of Carver: A Life in Poems, (2002 Newbery Honor book winner):
More pictures and reports of this past weekend at ALA can be found on the SLJ site. And my own photo documentary of the weekend is forthcoming!
As one third of the Three-Headed-Battle-Commander, I’m now directing my and your attention toward this year’s Battle of the Kids’ Books, hosted annually by School Library Journal.
It is a way for us to highlight many outstanding titles from the previous year, be they award winners already or sleepers until now. Read all sixteen books, follow the judges’ decisions, vote for the Undead, and make your opinions heard in the Comments!
On a wet wintry night last week (12/10/2014,) I participated in a panel discussion where the question of how to bring more international YA literature into the American market was raised and pondered. Hosted by Words without Borders and NYPL and moderated by Marc Aronson. Other panelists are Arthur Levine, publisher of Arthur Levine Books/Scholastic, Padma Venkatraman, author of A Time to Dance, and Briony Everroad, guest editor for the Words without Borders December issue on International YA literature. This is a summary of the evening.
We did it! Our Committee of 15 nominated 113 titles to be considered for Best Fiction for Young Adults, 2015. You can find out what the titles are with short annotations on the official ALA/YALSA site.
Here’s a simplified list with just titles — Any surprises? Favorites? Comment away :)
|Al Said, Adi
||Let’s Get Lost
|Anderson, Jodi Lynn
||The Vanishing Season
||One Death, Nine Stories
|Bassoff, Leah & Laura DeLuca
||Lost Girl Found
||Guy in Real Life
||The Last Forever
||Of Metal and Wishes
|Foley, Jessie Ann
||The Carnival at Bray
|Fombelle, Timothee de
||Girls Like Us
||The Devil’s Intern
||Into the Grey
||Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future
||Like No Other
||Heir of Fire
||How It Went Down
||The Truth About Alice
||Say What You Will
||Perfectly Good White Boy
||Free to Fall
||Althea & Oliver
|Parker, Natalie C.
||Beware the Wild
|Parsons, Mark Huntley
|Pearson, Mary E.
||The Kiss of Deception
||100 Sideways Miles
|Smith, Jennifer E.
||The Geography of You and Me
||Blue Lily, Lily Blue
||Like Water on Stone
||The Islands at the End of the World
||Season of the Witch
||Pieces of Me
|Phillips, LInda Vigen
|Smith, Sherwood & Brown, Rachel Manija
||The True Tale of Monster Billy Dean
|Anderson, Laurie Halse
||The Impossible Knife of Memory
||Don’t Look Back
||Prisoner of Night and Fog
||The Tyrant’s Daughter
||Breakfast Served Anytime
||Love Letters to the Dead
||The Walled City
||The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone
||To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
||The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy
||Fat Boy vs. the Cheerleaders
||And We Stay
||The Story of Owen: Dragonslayer of Troneheim
||The Gospel of Winter
||Salt & Storm
||Everything Leads to You
||We Were Liars
||The Young Elites
||Egg & Spoon
||I’ll Give You the Sun
||Dorothy Must Die
||Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of Katrina
||Gabi, a Girl in Pieces
||We Are the Goldens
||When I Was the Greatest
||The Winner’s Curse
||She Is Not Invisible
||Far From You
||Her Dark Curiosity
||Learning Not to Drown
||Dreams of Gods and Monsters
||The Glass Casket
||The Accidental Highwayman
||A Time to Dance
||The Scar Boys
|Waller, Sharon Biggs
||A Mad, Wicked Folly
||The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender
|Whaley, John Corey
|White, Kiersten & Jim Di Bartolo
||In the Shadows
||The Cure for Dreaming