Archive for the ‘Childrens and YA’ Category


Thursday, August 27th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-08-27 at 11.20.02 AMA middle grade novel that features a transgender girl trying to find acceptance is building buzz.

George by Alex Gino (Scholastic; Scholastic Inc. Audio; OverDrive Sample) is one of IndieBound’s Autumn ’15 “Inspired Recommendations for Kids from Indie Booksellers” and was part of The New York Times story on transgendered children’s books. Trade reviews are glowing, using words such as “inspiring” “radiant” and “required purchase.”

Today’s NPR’s Morning Edition joined the bandwagon in a wide ranging story that includes how Scholastic is marketing George as a book for everyone.

In a seemingly odd comparison, Scholastic sees the marketing strategy along the same lines as their approach to The Hunger Games. Editorial director David Levithan told NPR, “It’s kind of crazy to remember now, but that book was initially seen as a potentially difficult sell. After all, it’s about kids killing each other.”

But like Suzanne Collins’s breakout, Levithan knew that readers would relate to the story once they gave it a chance, and believed they just needed to get George in front of people who would hand-sell it. Scholastic sent it to 10,000 teachers and librarians and Gino appeared at major book fairs to get booksellers behind it.

That strategy is in keeping with the author’s goals. “I want it to be a book that someone passes to someone and says, ‘You have to.’ ” Gino told Kirkus.

Nancy Pearl on Graphic Bios

Tuesday, August 18th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 12.32.35 PMOn her weekly radio appearance on Seattle’s NPR affiliate KUOW, librarian Nancy Pearl talks about Jessie Hartland’s Steve Jobs: Insanely Great (RH/Schwartz & Wade).

It is a graphic biography Nancy thinks would be perfect for middle and high school students, making it an alternative tie-in to the upcoming biopic based on Walter Isaacson’s 600+ page tome about the computer legend.

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 12.33.48 PMFilled with black, white, and gray free-flowing images and text that often breaks out of speech bubbles, the nonfiction work details Jobs’s achievements and personality. Hartland’s website gives a quick glimpse of her style.

When asked by host Marcie Sillman, Nancy said that she thought Jobs would adore it, as she did, putting her on the hunt for Harland’s previous graphic biography, Bon Appétit!: The Delicious Life of Julia Child (RH/Schwartz & Wade, 2012).


Trailer for Selznick’s THE MARVELS

Thursday, August 13th, 2015

For his upcoming middle grade novel, The Marvels, Brian Selznick has created his first book trailer, just released.

The Wall Street Journal describes the month-long process the former professional puppeteer went through to build the sets and act out the story.

With The Invention of Hugo Cabret Selznick introduced a unique style of combining art and illustration which won him a Caldecott Medal and served as inspiration for Matin Scorsese in his film adaptation, Hugo. His next book Wonderstruck is also set for a big screen adaption, with Todd Haynes directing.

9780545448680_a1e5c-2The Marvels
Brian Selznick
Scholastic, September 15, 2015
Hardcover and eBook


Harper Lee & Truman Capote,
the Middle Grade Novel

Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

How is this for the plot of a book: Two kids grow up in the deep South 80 some years ago, making up stories, acting them out in the backyard. Fast forward a few decades and one of them writes what might be the most beloved debut novel of several generations and the other all but invents a new kind of book, one that still rivets readers to this day.

In a nutshell that is the real-life story of Harper Lee and Truman Capote, who were childhood neighbors and friends, continuing their friendship into adulthood until a dispute over the attribution for In Cold Blood drove them apart.

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 10.39.04 AMTheir youthful friendship is the subject of a forthcoming novel for middle-grade readers, Tru & Nelle (HMH; Mar. 1, 2016; ISBN 9780544699601) by Caldecott Honor winner Greg Neri (Yummy: the Last Days of a Southside Shorty), following the pair on adventures through their small Southern town. It’s the topic of a detailed story in the NYT Books section and is also described on Neri’s own site, with historic photos of his subjects.

Neri’s book comes on the heels of new publications by both authors. Of course Go Set a Watchman is has been the subject of much attention, overshadowing the news that new Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 10.35.58 AMCapote stories have been found as well, several of them in the Manuscripts and Archives Division of the New York Public Library.

The Capote stories were written when he was a teenager and a young man. Most have never been published. That will be corrected in October with the release of The Early Stories of Truman Capote (Random House; Random House Audio; Oct. 27; ISBN 9780812998221).


Monday, August 10th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 11.09.28 AMMany in the Twittersphere were unhappy when news broke that Sony plans a remake of the 1995 Robin Williams movie Jumanji, so soon after the actor’s death.

Joining the fray, E Online wrote “not only is the Jumanji remake unnecessary and kind of insulting, but it’s in danger of tarnishing the onscreen legacy of one of the great comedians of our time.”

Sony plans to release the film on Christmas Day 2016. Thus far none of the production team or actors have been announced.

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 11.04.25 AMJumanji (HMH, 1981) by Chris Van Allsburg is one of the few Caldecott books to be made into a full-length movie. The 2015 winner, The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend, will join that short list. It was recently announced that Jason Reitman (Juno) will write/direct the adaption for DreamWorks.


Monday, August 10th, 2015

Sony has big plans for the upcoming Goosebumps movie, hoping it will spawn a franchise, reports the L.A. Times. However, the story notes, the books’s heyday was in the early ’90’s so the fans are now too old for the movie and their kids may be too young for the movie’s ten-year-old target audience.

As we reported a few weeks ago, Goosebumps which arrives in theaters Oct. 16 starring Jack Black, is not based on any of the specific titles, but uses the entire series as a jumping-off point. Black plays author R.L. Stine, whose library of Goosebumps manuscripts contain actual monsters, unleashed by local inquisitive kids.

Tie-in editions are on their way (see our listing of Upcoming Movie Tie-ins), but keep your eye on the old Goosebumps titles as well, recently reissued as Classic Goosebumps (with the line “Now a Major Motion Picture” on the covers).

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It’s difficult to say which titles may get a bump. In an interview with, Stine said that the movie features “All the early monsters that are in the books. They all come out, they’re all there.” He names a few specifically,  “The real evil one is Slappy the Dummy (in the three Night of the Living Dummy titles), he’s there, the Abominable Snowman from Pasadena is there, and lawn gnomes, HUNDREDS of lawn gnomes (Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes). They’re great, they’re really good.” He also mentions  the giant praying mantis from  A Shocker on Shock Street.


Thursday, August 6th, 2015

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“The wizarding world is getting a handsome new addition,” reports Time magazine. Colin Ferrell is joining the cast of the Harry Potter spinoff, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  Planned as the first in a trilogy, the movie is scheduled for release on November 18, 2016.

Directed by David Yates, who was responsible for 4 of the 7 original Potter films, it stars Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander, the writer of the fictional Hogwarts textbook (a real edition was published in 2001 and rereleased earlier this year). J.K. Rowling has written the script.

The other movies in the series are planned for release in two-year intervals; Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 2 (2018) and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 3 (2020).

Dr. Seuss on The TODAY SHOW

Monday, July 27th, 2015

9780553524260_6faefOn the eve of the release of Dr. Seuss’s new book, What Pet Should I Get? (RH Books for Young Readers; Listening Library), the Today Show features a story focused on the production of the lost manuscript.

Seuss’s longtime assistant offers a reason Seuss may not have published the book himself, suggesting that One Fish, Two Fish appealed to him more, a preference that The New York Times’ Michiko Kakutani agreed with in her rhyming review.

In her cover review for the NYT Sunday Book Review, Maria Russo offers the theory that What Pet Should I Get? was a warm-up for One Fish, Two Fish.

MOCKINGJAY Trailer Has Arrived

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Released on Friday, the first full trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 is getting heavy scrutiny. In case you miss any significant bits, Entertainment Weekly does a “deep dive” into  all 2 minutes and 24 seconds.

The movie arrives in theaters on Nov. 20

Disney Loves DUMPLIN’

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

DumplinJust after hearing librarians rave about the forthcoming Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy (HarperCollins/ Balzer + Bray, Sept. 15) during yesterday’s YA GalleyChat, comes the news that Disney is developing it as a movie.

DRCs are available on Edelweiss, where it’s already gotten “much love” from  47 peers, including 16 librarians.

Check out the full chat below:


Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

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Coming October 16, Goosebumps, the movie, in 3-D, of course.

It’s less an adaptation of the Goosebumps books and more a movie in which they are referenced. Jack Black plays R.L. Stine, the books’ creator, who keeps the ghosts and monsters from each book locked in the manuscripts stored in his library. A kid new to the neighborhood discovers them and before you can say “Don’t open them, Pandora,” sets them loose.

The tie-ins, coming from Scholastic, are based on the movie (see our listing of  Upcoming — Tie-ins).


Monday, July 6th, 2015

This tantalizing trailer was posted on YouTube yesterday:

Unfortunately, it seems it’s a hoax, Variety reports that a Netflix spokesperson says the company had nothing to do with it. They also report that “The video in the fake trailer appears to be from the 2004 movie adaptation starring Jim Carrey, while the song is an excerpt of Missed Me by the Dresden Dolls, a Boston-based ‘punk cabaret’ duo.”

Netflix announced last November that they plan to adapt Daniel Handler’s Lemony Snicket books, but there’s been no news since.


Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

Although the movie based on The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones, by Cassandra Clare was considered a box office flop, ABC Family thought it could have a new life as a TV series, titled Shadowhunters,

It’s not coming until next year, but fan flames will be kept burning in the just-launched official site

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New trade paperback editions of the six titles in the series as well as of the 3-part prequel series, Infernal Devices are coming in September.

In March, Clare launches a sequel to the series, beginning with Lady Midnight  (S&S/ Margaret K. McElderry) set five years after the Mortal Instruments.

to Movies

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

9780544052703_7f178Winner of this year’s Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Mystery, and a nominee for the National Book Awards in Young People’s Literature, Kate Milford’s middle grade novel Greenglass House ((HMH/Clarion; Recorded Books, 2014) may be on the road to the big screen.

Deadline reports that Paramount in final negotiations to acquire the rights, has assigned a producer and screenwriter and is considering breaking the story in to several parts, to create a film franchise.

On her web site, Milford says she’s very happy with the choices because,  “I really loved what the producer Ian [Bryce, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Transformers: Age Of Extinction] told me about what he wanted the movie to be … He hit all the points that you’d want to hear someone hit if you’ve read Greenglass House and had strong feelings about it. In fact, it was immediately and overwhelmingly clear that he himself had read the book and had strong feelings about it, and I think the best thing an author can hope for in someone who’s going to shepherd their work to a new phase of being is that that person is as passionate about it as the author is, and that you have the same vision for the story you’re telling.”

Misty Copeland Makes History

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

Call it #WeNeedDiverseBallet. After 14 years with the American Ballet Theater, Misty Copeland has just been become the company’s first black female principal dancer.

9781476737980_f76ddHer autobiography, Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina, (S&S/Touchstone; Tantor Audio), was published in hardcover last year and is also available in trade paperback.

She also published a children’s picture book, Firebird, illus. by Christopher Myers, (Penguin/Putnam) picked as a best book of the year by NPR:


“The book is for very young dancers who may not see many people who look like them in the world of ballet. It’s illustrated by Christopher Myers, whose collagelike work is painterly, vivid and emotional. Copeland’s writing and Myers’ art draw you into a beautiful world, rich with color, texture and drama. For all budding young artists who maybe don’t have role models they can relate to, this little book provides some inspiration.”

She was one of Time magazine’s 100 Most influential People this year and was profiled in May on 60 Minutes and said she dreamed of becoming ABT’s principal dancer one day. That day has come.