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Author Archives: Earl @ The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer

About Earl @ The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer

I'm a Portland cliche. I love books and hang out at coffee shops because I want to be a writer. I've worked at libraries, different companies within Borders, at an online book buying/selling company, and, currently, at a wonderfully quirky children's bookstore! I also volunteer with different non-profits that promote literacy. I will entertain people with my stories. I will be a successful published writer of children's books. I will promote literacy, especially in children's lives. The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer- My Journey in Children's Literature. My Journey to Becoming a Writer. http://TheChroniclesOfAChildrensBookWriter.wordpress.com/ Library Hopping in PDX- Exploring Libraries. Embracing our book nerdiness. http://libraryhopping.wordpress.com/ A Semi-Blogged Life- I started this blog when I first moved to Portland and have recently been updating it again this year with the monthly challenges I've been doing. http://a-semi-blogged-life.blogspot.com/

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge #NFPB2018- April 18, 2018

nfpb2018

Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow FlagPride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag by Rob Sanders
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Pride and hope take center stage in this picture book focusing on LGBTQ activist Harvey Milk and how the rainbow flag became a symbol for those things. It traces how the latter has evolved from Gilbert Baker’s original concept to its current incarnation. How I wish it would have mentioned its evolving design as well.

RamadanRamadan by Hannah Eliot
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In a new board book series, festivities from different cultures are featured. In the first Celebrate the World, the youngest readers learn about Ramadan.

Little Heroes: Courageous People Who Changed the WorldLittle Heroes: Courageous People Who Changed the World by Heidi Poelman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A collection of courageous people in board book format to inspire the youngest of readers. I wasn’t familiar with the first person- William Wilberforce- so I was kind of excited that maybe this will feature not as famous changemakers but that wasn’t the case. Regardless, these are great people for anyone to know.

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Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

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My Reading Week #IMWAYR- April 16, 2018

I changed the name for my “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” posts to “My Reading Week.”

This week, I posted:
-Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday

What If...What If… by Samantha Berger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was totally blown away by this inspiring book. Perfect to have in classrooms and libraries- as well as bookshelves of adult creatives. For anyone who’s ever felt they’ve been called to create.

Everything You Need For a TreehouseEverything You Need For a Treehouse by Carter Higgins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This picture book reminds me of any of Ruth Krauss and Maurice Sendak’s amazing collaborations. Feels familiar and new at the same time, full of nostalgia and possibilities.

The Sandcastle That Lola BuiltThe Sandcastle That Lola Built by Megan Maynor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A fun twist on The House that Jack Built that celebrates friendship and creativity. The summery story is paired with playful illustrations.

The Hollow (Hercule Poirot, #26)The Hollow by Agatha Christie
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Not only does this feature my favorite detective doing what he does best but Agatha Christie has managed to write characters who are fascinating and complex and who you wouldn’t want to be victims or murderers!

Review Notes
***= Recommended
****= Highly Recommended
*****= Favorite

You can view all the books I’ve read at my Goodreads page.

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Thanks to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

If you’re on Twitter, don’t forget to use the hashtag #IMWAYR when sharing your link!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

 

April’s Picture Book of the Month- Part 2

picturebookit

As part of my Commitment to Literacy: Picture Book It challenge, I wanted to spotlight one book that I’m completely in love with. Throughout the month, I’ll do multiple posts based on the book. I hope you will end up picking up the book and joining in on the conversation.

Previous posts:
All posts pertaining to January, February, and March’s Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.
Picture Book of the Month Announcement

April’s Picture Book of the Month is They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki.

Groundwood Logos Spine

Jillian Tamaki is also this year’s artist for the Children’s Book Week poster.

cbwjt

Now in its 99th year, “it is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country.” Children’s Book Week is an “annual celebration of children’s books and reading” and takes place this year the week of April 30th through May 6th.

This year’s theme is “One World, Many Stories.”

Jillian Tamaki’s art is also featured in the activity sheet which includes a make your own comic, a reading log, and a word search.

Discussion
How are you celebrating Children’s Book Week? What’s your favorite independent bookstore or your public library doing for Children’s Book Week?

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

 

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge #NFPB2018- April 11, 2018

nfpb2018

This week, I’m featuring the Little People, Big Dreams series.

bb5

They currently reprinted some of their picture book biographies in abridged board book formats perfect for even younger readers. Naturally, you can’t expect to get lots of information from these- and that’s probably not their intention- but they are very quick introductions to people they may want to read more about when they’re older!

They have a great line up for the rest of the year with biographies for Jane Austen, Harriet Tubman, Georgia O’Keefe, Josephine Baker, Anne Frank, Mother Theresa, Lucy Maude Montgomery, Simone de Beauvoir, and Jane Goodall.

And, if those weren’t enough, some of the earlier titles will be repackaged with their own paper dolls. Plus, there’ll be three-book box sets of Women in Science and Women in Art coming out in the fall.

Have you read any of these books? What do you think of this line?

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Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

 

My Reading Week #IMWAYR- April 9, 2018

I changed the name for my “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” posts to “My Reading Week.”

This week, I posted:
April’s Picture Book of the Month PickThey Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki
Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday

I Got It!I Got It! by David Wiesner
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I don’t know how he does it but David Wiesner scores another homerun in this playful almost wordless picture book.

Sometimes You FlySometimes You Fly by Katherine Applegate
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m sure this will be a go-to gift for graduates and newborns. I can’t wait for this to come out in board book.

Dress Up and Let's Have a PartyDress Up and Let’s Have a Party by Remy Charlip
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This throwback picture book is a playful celebration of having fun with friends.

Natsumi!Natsumi! by Susan Lendroth
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Natsumi and her family are getting ready for the Japanese arts festival. She wants to be part of it but finds her outgoing personality is too much and doesn’t fit in with most of the activities. Luckily, her grandfather has a surprise and soon she takes center stage with her new talent.

Peter  Ernesto: A Tale of Two SlothsPeter Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths by Graham Annable
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Two friends are separated when one of them has wanderlust. Can they find their way back to one another?

This first in a new early chapter graphic novel series will be perfect as a read-aloud with all its silly songs and fun friendship storyline.

Nate Expectations (Better Nate Than Ever #3)Nate Expectations by Tim Federle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve enjoyed getting to know Nate Foster over the course of this three-book series. From running away to New York to audition for E.T.: The Musical to living (and now abruptly leaving) his dream on stage and back again to his hometown of Jankburg, Pennsylvania, we see Nate take on challenges the only way he knows how- by being himself. And therein lies the problem as well since he doesn’t know who he quite is just yet. He knows who he should be to his parents and his classmates and what they want him to be. Fortunately, he has a best friend who understands him sometimes better than he does himself. This last hurrah is a laugh out loud coming of age story that proves that despite all that life throws at you, it gets better.

It will have you wanting an encore.

SunnySunny by Jason Reynolds
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

RUN- don’t walk- to your favorite independent bookstore April 10th when the third book in Jason Reynold’s Track series comes out! Sunny is a moving lyrical story about a boy who has spent all his life doing things for others. When the call to do something else- something he actually wants to do- becomes too loud to ignore, he answers it. Will it be worth it?

I love how each book in the series is so different from one another, each one reflecting on the main character’s personality. I almost wish there’d be a book about Coach!

I also listened to this book. This is the review from the first time I read it.
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond FearBig Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hello folks, creative friends. Please allow me to go all Oprah on you for a moment as I tell you to read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic. Whatever field you dabble in or even if you’re not sure yet but just want a field to play in, this book will give you a nudge in the right direction. Read it!

I already want to reread it myself because there were so many parts that spoke to me and I want to make sure I let them soak in.

Review Notes
***= Recommended
****= Highly Recommended
*****= Favorite

You can view all the books I’ve read at my Goodreads page.

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Thanks to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

If you’re on Twitter, don’t forget to use the hashtag #IMWAYR when sharing your link!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

 

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge #NFPB2018- April 4, 2018

nfpb2018

The Man Who Loved Libraries: The Story of Andrew CarnegieThe Man Who Loved Libraries: The Story of Andrew Carnegie by Andrew Larsen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I finally found a copy of this book! This is an immigrant’s tale and a rag to riches story. This is how one man who used his wealth to enrich the lives of others by helping build public libraries around the world. Truly inspiring.

For older grades, this would be a great study on not only philanthropy but also choosing which parts of a person’s life to tell and not tell while writing their biography.

How Sweet the Sound: The Story of Amazing GraceHow Sweet the Sound: The Story of Amazing Grace by Carole Boston Weatherford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.”

Most people are probably familiar with the song but I bet most like me didn’t know who wrote it and how it became to be. Through lyrical text, Carole Boston Weatherford writes about how grace saved and changed the life John Newton. But it is Frank Morrison’s art that will steal the show.

Grandmother FishGrandmother Fish by Jonathan Tweet
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

An interactive picture book that will engage the youngest readers as they learn about evolution. I appreciated all the back matter to help aid adults talk about the subject more with kids.

Science Comics: Robots and Drones: Past, Present, and FutureScience Comics: Robots and Drones: Past, Present, and Future by Mairghread Scott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Science Comics delivers another fascinating installment in their nonfiction graphic novel series this time tackling robots. What are robots anyway? How long have they been in our lives? What can we expect from them in the future? All these questions-and more!- are answered. I enjoyed the Robot Hall of Fame in the back of the book!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —

 

April’s Picture Book of the Month Pick

picturebookit

As part of my Commitment to Literacy: Picture Book It challenge, I wanted to spotlight one book that I’m completely in love with. Throughout the month, I’ll do multiple posts based on the book. I hope you will end up picking up the book and joining in on the conversation.

Previous posts:
All posts pertaining to January, February, and March’s Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.

April’s Picture Book of the Month is…

they say blue

They Say Blue
Text and art by Jillian Tamaki
[Hardcover, Ebook)
Published by Abrams Books for Young Readers
March 13, 2018

Summary
In captivating paintings full of movement and transformation, Tamaki follows a young girl through a year or a day as she examines the colors in the world around her. Egg yolks are sunny orange as expected, yet water cupped in her hands isn’t blue like they say. But maybe a blue whale is blue. She doesn’t know, she hasn’t seen one. Playful and philosophical, They Say Blue is a book about color as well as perspective, about the things we can see and the things we can only wonder at.

This first picture book from celebrated illustrator Jillian Tamaki will find equal appreciation among kids and collectors.

Review
A gorgeously illustrated picture book contemplating the colors of the natural world.

A beautiful use of the rainbow of colors to tell a story full of wonder and stunning imagery as seen through the eyes of a young girl. I loved how she managed to convey the change in time and a change of emotions in various parts of the book.

This is definitely worth reading and rereading or just admiring the art.

Discussion
What did you think of They Say Blue? Did you have a favorite spread?

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

— — — — — — — THANK YOU FOR READING! — — — — — — —