Category Archives: links

Links, I have some!

Oh, my poor little neglected blog…. at the very least, I can manage some random links!

Some things just shouldn’t be board books. Like Shakespeare and Jane Austen.

Wait another eight or nine years at least, and then give them some of these thirty-nine graphic novels kids can’t resist instead. (Awesome round-up, SLJ! Yay!) Or go check out why we still love picture books.

And also, Adam Rex on An Open Letter to Everyone Who Thinks it Must be Easy, Writing Kid’s Books.

Also-also, Shaun Tan answering interview questions with wordless cartoons is pretty awesome, too.

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And it’s not even Banned Book or Freedom to Read Week yet…

… which are in October and February, respectively. (ETA: Banned Books Week starts Sept 25, oops…. But Freedom to Read Week is still in February.) This week, I have been talking to people upset about sexual information on our library’s shelves, especially considering its proximity to two high schools.

Somebody’s always trying to ban something. But it’s not always quite as sickening as calling the rape scenes in Speak pornographic. Laurie Halse Anderson speaks eloquently on the matter. More here from the ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom blog (You know what also made me feel marginally better? A line by line grammar critique of the letter from the individual who wishes to ban the book. Contains strong language, as the situation warrants.)

Also on the slate of books-some-people-don’t-think-teens-should-read, Sherman Alexie’s Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian. I KNOW. GAH. An editorial also has links to past articles, to give you a pretty good picture of the whole sordid affair. For some perspective on the awesomeness of the book and Sherman Alexie, From Wellpinit to Reardan: Sherman Alexie’s Journey to the National Book Award from the ALAN Review.

Over at Booklist, Pat Scales (also of SLJ’s Scales on Censorship column) takes on the Common Sense Media organization Weighing In: Three Bombs, Two Lips, and a Martini Glass

If you had asked me a year ago what bombs, lips, and martini glasses have in common, I would have answered, “A fraternity party.” Now I have a different answer. It’s called Common Sense Media. This not-for-profit Web-based organization is in the business of using a “rating” system to review all types of media that target children, but their “ratings” of books are especially disingenuous. They claim that they want to keep parents informed. Informed about what? What their children should read or what they shouldn’t read?

And for a total change of pace, you can find improv everywhere, including reenacting Star Wars scenes on a New York subway car.

New Things I Want to Read

Lots of good stuff on the horizon…

Arthur Slade’s Hunchback Assignments series will continue with a third book Empire of Ruins, in January 2011. Click for the cover art!

It would not not surprise me to learn that Jill Maclean’s third book, Home Truths, follows The Nine Lives of Travis Keating and The Present Tense of Prinny Murphy. I’ll find out once we start reading for next year’s RMBA shortlist, I suspect…

As much as I like Nancy Werlin’s psychological thrillers like The Killer’s Cousin and Rules of Survival, I am thrilled that her latest book, Extraordinary is along the lines of her last book, Impossible, a modern spin on the traditional ballad “Scarborough Fair.”

Yay! New book from Cornelia Funke, Reckless is coming in September: “The story is about Jacob Reckless, who escapes to another world behind a mirror, where witches haunt the forests and fairies and dwarfs roam. It’s also a world locked in a deadly war. Jacob’s secret is safe until one day his younger brother, Will, follows him-with disastrous consequences. The brothers are forced to race against time to find reverse a curse before one of them is lost forever.”

And getting to some of my favourite authors…

Woo-hoo! New Tamora Pierce! A short story collecton this time, Tortall and Other Lands: A Collection of Tales.

Also cause for anticipation, new Terry Pratchett in October! I Shall Wear Midnight is the fourth Tiffany Aching book.

I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to hear that there is a new Bordertown anthology coming out! Not convinced? Check out the line-up: “Terri Windling’s groundbreaking urban fantasy shared world is back in an all new Borderlands anthology, WELCOME TO BORDERTOWN, to be edited by Holly Black and Ellen Kushner, featuring new stories from many of the original writers including Emma Bull, Will Shetterly, Midori Snyder and Charles de Lint, as well as new work by writers who were inspired by the original series, including Cassandra Clare, Cory Doctorow, Kelly Link and more.”

Over on the adult fiction side of things, a new Newford collection from urban mystic fantasy master, Charles De Lint, Muse and Reverie.

Mmm. New book anticipation.

Links from Libraryland

I’ve spent more time this summer working on library-opening than the tantilizing, ever growing to-read pile on my coffee table, but though my blogging’s been non-existent, I have managed to collect a whole lot of saved links…

Edmonton Public Library recently held a viral marketing contest as part of their rebranding campaign, giving out vinyl cling stickers and encouraging people to stick them up around the city and take photos. See the winners here!

Speaking of Edmonton… right now at my library, we’ve just opened a public library right in between two high schools (two weeks ago and counting), so I was especially interested in this article from the Edmonton Journal: School libraries serve up a sequel: Rural facilities do double duty in the community, about a shared public/school library in the town of Kinuso in northern Alberta.

South of the border, a one-man grass-roots literacy movement in Chicago, the Book Bike, will keep going strong, with the support of the Chicago Public Libary.

Annnd back borth again, Edmonton-born Nathan Fillion on an ALA Read Poster

And on a more general reading note, via my mom, The art of slow reading “Has endlessly skimming short texts on the internet made us stupider? An increasing number of experts think so – and say it’s time to slow down…”

Linkalicious: a GLBTQ assortment…

Congrats, those of you south of the 59th parallel, for striking down Proposition 8!

In celebration, here is a roundup of GLBTQ links that have been gathering in my many browser tabs…

Looking for something to read? Check out QueerYA: Fiction for LGBT Teens, the ALA Rainbow Project: GLBTQ Books for Children and Teens, I’m Here. I’m Queer. What the Hell Do I Read?, Australian GLBT YA books, Canadian GLBT YA books, or see what I’ve read lately.

Awesome things: some videos from and about Camp Fyrefly, a leadership retreat for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans-identified, two-spirited, queer, and allied (LGBTTQ&A) youth.

Also, Degrassi Premiere to Include Trans Teen “Now entering its 10th season, the hit teen TV show Degrassi is once again charting new territory — this time by featuring a transgender character.”

A recent study has concluded that GLBT families are doing just fine.

in June, the results of an almost two decade-long study of the children of lesbian moms came out in the journal Pediatrics. This reported that not only do such children do as well as the children of straight married parents, but in some key ways, they do even better. Indeed, after following the children of lesbian moms for their first 17 years, researchers Nanette Gartrell and Henny Bos determined that compared to other teens, these kids were more likely to succeed academically, and were less likely to have social problems, break rules or exhibit aggressive behavior.

Confessions of a Comic Book Guy–A Safe World For Everyone, more on the first openly gay Archie character.

Getting a bit tangential, Westboro Baptist Church protesters were no match for Comic Con-goers. “Simply stated: The eclectic assembly of nerdom’s finest stood and delivered.”

Okay, only sort of related, but I needed to share this somehow. The most entertaining response I have read to Dumbledore being gay comes from YA author Maureen Johnson. As previously chronicled:

“When we last met,” I said, as J.K. gulped down some milk straight from the carton, “you told me that Ginny was a robot, Hermoine was Harry’s sister, Ron was a figment of Harry’s imagination, and Harry wasn’t in the book at all because he had gone to Spain. You also told me that book seven was all about Kevin Whitby.”

This 2007 post is entitled “Accio Stewardess.” Maureen Johnson’s blog frequently make me laugh out loud.

Bookish links

Man, opening a new library branch is a lot of work! That’s what I’ve been up to lately… less than a month to go!

Here are some things that have been kicking around my zillion open tabs for a while…

Roger Sutton, editor in chief of the children’s lit journal The Horn Book, is awesome. Conference swag that I covet, via his blog, When A Is for Xbox: 26 Ways to Prevent Summer Reading.

An essay from G. K. Chesterton’s book, All Things Considered, on the morality of fairy tales.

Greenwillow’s blog continues to be awesome. Check out Megan and Eugenides Tour Tinseltown and Come Home With their American Express Cards Safe (and as far as we know, Gen didn’t steal one single thing while we were there) to see a couple storyboards for a hypothetical The Thief movie.

How did I not know about the Sunburst Awards? “The Sunburst Award for Canadian Literature of the Fantastic is a juried award based on excellence of writing in two categories: adult and young adult. The awards are presented annually to Canadian writers with a speculative fiction novel or book-length collection of speculative fiction published any time during the previous calendar year. Named after the first novel by Phyllis Gotlieb (1926–2009), one of the first published authors of contemporary Canadian science fiction, the awards consist of a cash award of Cdn$1,000 and a medallion which incorporates a specially designed “Sunburst” logo. The winners receive their awards in the fall of every year.” My to-read list just got even longer–although to be fair, about half the nominees that I haven’t read are aleady on it.

Links o’ Random: cool fictional things, comics and censorship and library stuff

There’s a post on the Diana Wynne Jones community on livejournal where you can share photos of your own shelf of DWJ books, and speaking of rilly awesome bookstuff, check out the floor plan for a house for Pooh and Piglet (and make sure you click on “notes” in the navigation panel in the top-right corner), and a handmade miniature hobbit hole of truly astounding intricate detail.

Don’t forget, this Saturday, May 1 is Free Comic Book Day! And Have Book Chains Lost Their Manga Mojo? IcV2 checks the “Naruto Index” to see if bookstores are cutting back on their manga inventory…

From SLJ, Florida Mom Wants YA Library Books Labeled, Segregated, marking any books with illegal acts or the ever-nebulous “inappropriate content” in them. And Jeff Smith’s Bone comics have been challenged in a Minnesota school library.

I’ve been hearing a lot of alarming things about library budget cuts in the States. Here’s a great blog post on why libraries are important.

And I am off to the Alberta Library Conference for the rest of the week. You’ll find me presenting on cool Canadian kids’ books on Saturday!