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October’s Picture Book of the Month- Part 4

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All posts pertaining to previous Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.
October’s Picture Book of the Month Announcement and Review

dreamers

October’s Picture Book of the Month is Dreamers by Yuyi Morales.

This week, I wanted to share behind-the-scene articles.

First is an interview between Yuyi Morales and her editor Neal Porter they did for Publishers Weekly. Maybe because I had recently read Dear Genius: The Letters of Ursula Nordstrom by Leonard S. Marcus, I’ve been interested in this kind of relationship. And, interestingly, Yuyi Morales used a pen that once was Maurice Sendak’s while making Dreamers.

One of my favorite exchanges in their conversation is below:

Porter: It’s inevitably a book that is political and makes a political statement. With that, what do you see as your role as a children’s book creator? What do you hope people will take away from Dreamers?

Morales: To even try to be neutral in this time would be a disservice. As a children’s book creator, I take on a huge responsibility in that I hope my book will raise consciousness and awareness in children. My voice might not always be the one worth hearing, but I feel that, in putting myself out there, I can open the doors for the stories of those who need more attention.

Next is from the blog Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast where Yuyi Morales creates a photo essay on the making of Dreamers. This is an absolute must-read if you want to get a better understanding of the book and her process. I loved the section on how to make your own book. Wonderful!

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

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October’s Picture Book of the Month- Part 3

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 previous Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.
October’s Picture Book of the Month Announcement and Review

dreamers

October’s Picture Book of the Month is Dreamers by Yuyi Morales.

This week, I wanted to share some audio and video related to the book.

First up, here is Yuyi Morales talking about Dreamers.

Second, watch the book trailer.

Finally, listen to an amazing interview she did for Matthew Winner’s The Children’s Book Podcast.

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

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

 

October’s Picture Book of the Month Pick- 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 previous Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.
October’s Picture Book of the Month Announcement and Review

dreamers

October’s Picture Book of the Month is Dreamers by Yuyi Morales.

This week, I wanted to share the amazing moment I got to meet her!

I had actually seen her earlier this year at a children’s bookseller’s conference in New Orleans but I missed out on hearing her speak and it was before I got to read and fall in love with her latest picture book.

But I was just at another bookseller’s conference last month in Tacoma, Washington where she was promoting Dreamers. She gave a moving inspiring speech at a dinner. The whole room was enthralled listening to her talk about how the book came to be. I know it gave me a whole other level of appreciation when she talked about how she created the art for it. What really resonated with me the most was the part in which she talked about how there were people who were more than ready to tell our stories for us without getting to know us, basically without asking our permissions. And she invited everyone to speak up and share their stories before someone else did.

The following day, I saw her walking the conference floor. I had to tell her how much I enjoyed her talk. And how much I enjoyed her books. That I was super excited because she was going to do a reading at the bookstore where I work the following week. (I was also worried afterwards that I may have gushed too much about her books and that I was too overly excited and that she was going to cancel her appearance!) She was kind enough to take a picture with me!

yuyi

She was as kind as ever when she came to the store. I loved seeing the connections she made with other people, as well. Her books were always wonderful but Dreamers was- is- truly special.

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

 

October’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 previous Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.

October’s Picture Book of the Month is…

dreamers

Dreamers
Text and art by Yuyi Morales
[Hardcover, Ebook]
(This book is also available in Spanish, as Soñadores!)
Published by Neal Porter Books
September 4, 2018

Summary
Caldecott Honor artist and five-time Pura Belpré Award winner Yuyi Morales tells her own immigration story in this picture-book tribute to the transformative power of hope . . . and reading. An instant New York Times bestseller!

In 1994, Yuyi Morales left her home in Xalapa, Mexico and came to the US with her infant son. She left behind nearly everything she owned, but she didn’t come empty-handed.

She brought her strength, her work, her passion, her hopes and dreams…and her stories. Caldecott Honor artist and five-time Pura Belpré winner Yuyi Morales’s gorgeous new picture book Dreamers is about making a home in a new place. Yuyi and her son Kelly’s passage was not easy, and Yuyi spoke no English whatsoever at the time. But together, they found an unexpected, unbelievable place: the public library. There, book by book, they untangled the language of this strange new land, and learned to make their home within it.

Dreamers is a celebration of what migrantes bring with them when they leave their homes. It’s a story about family. And it’s a story to remind us that we are all dreamers, bringing our own gifts wherever we roam. Beautiful and powerful at any time but given particular urgency as the status of our own Dreamers becomes uncertain, this is a story that is both topical and timeless.

The lyrical text is complemented by sumptuously detailed illustrations, rich in symbolism. Also included are a brief autobiographical essay about Yuyi’s own experience, a list of books that inspired her (and still do), and a description of the beautiful images, textures, and mementos she used to create this book.

Review
A lovely tribute to libraries- the power of books- as seen through the eyes of immigrants.

Discussion
I’ll go into a much extensive review in the future. What did you think of Dreamers?

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

 

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge #NFPB2018- September 26, 2018

nfpb2018

She Made a Monster: How Mary Shelley Created FrankensteinShe Made a Monster: How Mary Shelley Created Frankenstein by Lynn Fulton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Young readers may not have read the classic novel but they are most likely familiar in one way or another about Frankenstein and his monster. This is the story of how the story was formed during a writer’s weekend with mentions of Mary Shelley’s mother’s influence on her writing.

Undocumented: A Worker's FightUndocumented: A Worker’s Fight by Duncan Tonatiuh
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Told in a two-sided accordion-fold format, this follows a documented worker’s struggle for rights and the challenges one faces as an undocumented person. I would recommend for upper elementary and up.

The Diamond and the Boy: The Creation of Diamonds  The Life of H. Tracy HallThe Diamond and the Boy: The Creation of Diamonds The Life of H. Tracy Hall by Hannah Holt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Told in a dual-format narrative, readers follow the lives of both a diamond and a boy who would later invent a diamond-making machine.

Enough! 20 Protesters Who Changed AmericaEnough! 20 Protesters Who Changed America by Emily Easton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Protests comes in many ways. Standing up. Remaining seated. Taking a knee. From Samuel Adams to the Parkland students, readers will be know they too can make a difference. Simple text makes up the actual story with mini bios at the end of the book.

The Gender Wheel: A Story about Bodies and GenderThe Gender Wheel: A Story about Bodies and Gender by Maya Gonzalez
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Great rather intensive book about gender perfect for kids and adults who have questions. Kid friendly. Body positive. All inclusive.

Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura BelpréPlanting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré by Anika Aldamuy Denise
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Add this to your to-read list (pub date is January 15th 2019.)

The life of famed Storyteller Pura Belpré is told fittingly in this bilingual nonfiction picture book- tracing her steps from her Puerto Rican homeland to the book-lined walls of the New York Public Library where she entertained patrons with stories and puppets. And when she couldn’t find stories for the community she was serving, she wrote her own. Includes a timeline plus summaries of some of the stories she wrote.

A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them PronounsA Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have this problem of using the term “guys” as my default when talking to groups of people- like “What are you guys up to?” or “How are you guys doing?”- even when they aren’t guys at all. And when I’ve gone to certain events, I’ve been seeing the use of pronouns being included in name tags. This book is a quick but informative read for anyone middle grade and older who want to get a better understanding of gender pronouns.

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My Reading Week #IMWAYR- September 24, 2018

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

This week, I posted:
-September Picture Book of the Month- Part 3: Jacqueline Woodson Speeches
Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday

The Stuff of StarsThe Stuff of Stars by Marion Dane Bauer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Stunning artwork with a great message that we’re all connected, all made of star stuff.

Goodnight, AnneGoodnight, Anne by Kallie George
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kindred spirits will be charmed by this picture book evoking well-loved scenes from L.M. Montgomery’s classic novel.

The Princess in Black and the Science Fair Scare (The Princess in Black #6)The Princess in Black and the Science Fair Scare by Shannon Hale
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another winning installment in the series. This time, a monster gets loose at a science fair and it’s up to a couple princess crime fighters to save the day. But when it proves to be too much, readers will discover that heroes don’t all wear capes!

Timmy Failure: It's the End When I Say It's the EndTimmy Failure: It’s the End When I Say It’s the End by Stephan Pastis

A nice way to end a hilarious series about a boy who thinks he’s the greatest detective in the world and his polar bear assistant who creates more problems than solves them.

My Brother's Husband, Volume 1My Brother’s Husband, Volume 1 by Gengoroh Tagame
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was not my typical read. While I read plenty of graphic novels, I don’t really venture into manga territory. But this was getting lots of buzz based on my interests in LGBT works. I enjoyed the sensibility and style from manga-style storytelling.

A divorced dad gets an unexpected visit from his dead twin’s Canadian husband. Trying to make sense of his brother’s lifestyle which caused a rift between them, he also ends up having to deal with other people’s negative reactions to his gay brother-in-law.

The only downside of reading this now is that I don’t know when Volume 2 comes out.

My Brother's Husband, Volume 2My Brother’s Husband, Volume 2 by Gengoroh Tagame
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In this concluding volume, two in-laws continue trying to understand one another- a Canadian who travelled to Japan to visit his late husband’s family and the brother trying to come to terms with his brother’s sexuality. I really enjoyed the slice of life storytelling even though it’s not my usual reading style- at least not in manga form. I was glad that there wasn’t a soap opera twist in this book.

Review Notes
***= Liked It
****= 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!

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

 

September’s Picture Book of the Month- Part 3

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 previous Picture Book of the Month picks have been archived over at Picture Book It.
September’s Picture Book of the Month Announcement and Book Review
-Rafael López’s Book Reviews

September’s Picture Book of the Month is The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson
Illustrated by Rafael López.

This week I wanted to share some of Jacqueline Woodson’s speeches.

First up, it’s her speech after receiving the 2018 Children’s Literature Legacy Award given to “an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a significant and lasting contribution to children’s literature through books that demonstrate integrity and respect for all children’s lives and experiences.”

Earlier this year, she also received the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award “the world’s largest award for children’s and young adult literature.”

Here’s her speech- including the transcript– for receiving the May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award.

And, don’t forget to watch her inauguration as the current National Ambassador of Young People’s Literature.

Discussion
What’s your favorite Jacqueline Woodson speech or presentation? I’m hoping to see her when she comes to Portland next year!

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