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Books to Read (Forthcoming Releases)

February 10th, 2016 (07:00 am)
thoughtful

Current Mood: thoughtful
Current Song: Without a Trace theme song

February 2016
After the Woods by Kim Savage
Bluescreen by Dan Wells (Mirador Book #1)
Peas and Carrots by Tanita S. Davis

March 2016
Burning Down the House by Jane Mendelsohn
Exit, Pursued By a Bear by E.K. Johnston
The Girl in the Tower by Lisa Schroeder

April 2016
The Demonists by Thomas E. Sniegoski
Essential Maps for the Lost by Deb Caletti
The Last Boy and Girl in the World by Siobhan Vivian

May 2016
Beware That Girl by Teresa Toten
Girls on Fire by Robin Wasserman
It Wasn't Always Like This by Joy Preble
Lois Lane: Double Down by Gwenda Bond
Savage by Thomas E. Sniegoski
Time Stoppers by Carrie Jones
Wishing Day (Wishing Series #1) by Lauren Myracle

June 2016
Last Night, A Superhero Saved My Life edited by Liesa Mignogna
The Leaving by Tara Altebrando
Project (Un)Popular by Kristen Tracy
You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour and David Levithan

Fall 2016
The Twelve Days of Dash and Lily by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier

October 2016
What Light by Jay Asher

Sometime in 2016
The Kindness Club by Courtney Sheinmel
World of Payne Book 0: Ghost Dog by Tom Sniegoski and Frank Cho
Captain Marvel novel by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale
Sam & Ilsa by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Super Hero Girls graphic novel by Shea Fontana
Super Hero Girls novel by Lisa Yee
Think Twice by Sarah Mlynowski (sequel to Don't Even Think About It)
Upside-Down Magic #2: Sticks and Stones by Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins

Summer 2017
Welcome to Hotel Monster by Gwenda Bond and Christopher Rowe

Sometime in 2017
Feminism for the Real World by Kelly Jensen

Fall 2017
Zeroes #3 by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan, and Deborah Biancotti

Little Willow [userpic]

Interview: Suzanne Nelson

February 8th, 2016 (06:00 am)
Current Mood: inspired
Current Song: Farther Down by Matthew Sweet

Please welcome to the blog author Suzanne Nelson, winner of the Sydney Taylor Honor Award in the Teen Readers Category for her novel Serendipity's Footsteps.

What inspired you to write Serendipity's Footsteps? Did you plan from the onset to tie various plotlines together through a pair of shoes, or did the characters' individual stories come to you first?

There were so many inspirations for Serendipity's Footsteps. Versions of Ray and Pinny had been in my mind for over a decade, and I'd even tried once, years ago, writing a vastly different rendition of their story where they were biological sisters. Sixty or so pages into that story, though, I realized it wasn't working and shelved it. Then, a few years ago, I saw a single red slingback sitting atop a boulder in my town. It spurred a conversation with my sister about lost shoes. We tried to unravel the mystery of all the shoes we spotted hanging in trees or laying abandoned on roadsides. What were their stories? Who'd left them behind? It was my sister who asked me to write a novel about lost shoes. She's always loved shoes and told me, "Just write it for me." Because she's my best and most loved and trusted friend, I began writing for her. Then, as I wrote, without me even being fully aware of how pieces were falling into place, Dalya and her story were born. Once Dalya came to me, Ray and Pinny appeared beside her. Maybe they'd been waiting for her the whole time. Needless to say, I knew that these three heroines needed to come together. They each needed families and love, and the story's pale pink shoes became the key to their unbreakable bond. Really, writing the book was as much about serendipity for me as it was for my three heroines. I love Dalya, Ray, and Pinny and consider them kindred sisters and family. They exist for me, real as any other people, and so do the shoes they love.

Dayla, Ray, and Pinny have distinct personalities and voices. Is there a little piece of you in each of them? My Knopf editor and dear friend Michelle Frey tells me that she sees some of me in each of my three heroines, so it's probably true. I can't say with confidence that I could ever possess Dalya's resilience, because I've never experienced anything like her tragedies. Still, I admire her strength of spirit, her loyalty to her faith, culture, and family, and her deep capacity for love. I'd like to believe I carry some of those traits within me, too. I'm as passionate about writing as Ray is about her music. As a teenager, I sometimes wished to escape my life like Ray does. But who doesn't dream of running away at some point or other? The idea of reinventing yourself in a new place and starting fresh without obligations to anyone or anything can be appealing, until you start thinking about how lonely it would be. I have some of Ray's selfishness and outspokenness, too, although maybe I've learned to temper those shortcomings through the years (only my family can tell you how successful I've been in my efforts.). As for Pinny and her quest for the "More of Life," the joy she finds in so much of the world around her--I strive to find "More" joy and love in my life each and every day. I'm not as much of an optimist as she is, but I believe in magical thinking and sucking the marrow out of every moment life has to offer.

Did you model any of the characters after people you know or admire?

None of the characters are based directly on people I know personally. However, the emotions Dalya experiences in the wake of her losses, and the decisions she makes in her personal life to preserve and honor her family and her Jewish heritage and identity, were informed by some close friends who shared their family's Holocaust survival stories with me. I have such great admiration for these friends who continually work to protect their family's histories and faith and I hoped to convey some of this with Dalya's character. Pinny's character and story, as well, were influenced indirectly by an experience I had as a teen. My senior year of high school, I tutored a three-year-old boy who had Down Syndrome. The afternoons I spent with Troy were some of the most memorable and rewarding of my adolescence, and I've stayed in touch with the Drake family through the years. Troy and his parents opened my eyes to the challenges so many people with special needs face in finding meaningful employment and independence. It was so important to him and to his family that he work in a field he truly loved. Troy is in his twenties now and has his own Etsy business, Doodle Duck Design. Talking with the Drakes about their journey to find ways for Troy to live his "More of Life" helped me develop Pinny's story. I hope Pinny's search to find fulfillment in her life and work reflects that.

What are the biggest challenges - and rewards - when writing and researching historical fiction?

Research is one of the most fascinating parts of writing historical fiction. I love it so much that for me, the biggest challenge of researching is knowing when to stop! Then there's the problem of having to choose which pieces of research to include in my story, and trying to glean what facts will hold the most interest for readers. It's a time-consuming process, but one that I truly enjoy.

What resources did you use while writing and revising Serendipity's Footsteps?

With Serendipity's Footsteps, I read letters, diary entries, and first-hand accounts from Jewish children and teen refugees who came to the United States prior to and during World War II. From the mid 1930s to the early 1940s, one thousand Jewish children were brought to our country from Europe as part of an American kindertransport. All of those one thousand children left their parents behind in Europe and many never saw them again. They were placed with foster families around the country. Many of the children didn't know English when they arrived, were placed in school classes with younger students, and struggled with loneliness and coping with the grief of the terrible losses of the families they left behind. Learning about the obstacles they overcame and the strength and courage they had in such tragic circumstances helped me portray the difficulties Dalya faced in her transition to America.

Although my visit to Dachau Concentration Camp took place years ago, that visit has always haunted me. I drew on my memories of it when writing the novel. I also contacted two lovely professors, Dr. Buser and Dr. Ley, in Germany who were experts in the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp and its history, and they answered my numerous questions about that specific camp. Dr. Joselit, Professor of Judaic Studies and History at George Washington University, also gave me wonderful insight into Jewish life and culture in 1930s and 40s New York City. In the end, I was fortunate to have a number of knowledgeable people, here and overseas, guide my research and am so grateful to all of them for their help.

Your modern day romantic comedies include Cake Pop Crush, Hot Cocoa Hearts, Bacon Me Crazy, and Macarons at Midnight. Did you always plan for these stories to be a connected series?

This series started out as a single book, Cake Pop Crush. My Scholastic editor and I were so thrilled to see how popular that book became, and the other companion books followed as a result. Even though the books all have some fun baking theme, they each have different characters and a distinct plot, so they don't have to be read in any specific order. There will be a fifth foodie romance book coming in 2017, titled Donut Go Breaking My Heart. The style of writing for this series is very different from the style of Serendipity's Footsteps. The baking series is lighter and geared towards a younger, middle grade audience. It's fun writing the baking books because it gives me a break from the more serious topics and themes I'm drawn to in my other novels for older readers.

Do you like baking? If so, what are your specialties?

I am giggling at this question, because the honest truth is that I am not as much of a baker as my Cake Pop series might lead readers to believe. When I was experimenting with cake pop recipes for Cake Pop Crush, I actually set a bowl of candy melts on fire in my microwave. I had to run out onto my back porch with the flaming Tupperware to extinguish it under the pouring rain! My family thought it was hilarious.

Cake pop mishaps aside, I do enjoy baking with my three kids. I have a particular weakness for gooey brownies and white chocolate chip cookies and gobble them warm straight out of the oven. My five-year-old daughter is especially passionate about baking, and her love for it rubs off on me. We made some cupcakes a few weeks ago that had mountains of fluorescent icing so high they could've rivaled Mount Everest.

You have also worked as a book editor. How did your work as an editor inform your writing, and vice versa?

I don't think I ever would have become a published author without having been an editor first. Learning the ins and outs of the publishing process and working with other authors on their manuscripts was the best education I received as a writer. Because I was able to see what needed to be revised or reworked in other people's manuscripts, I learned how to view my own writing with a more critical eye. I also learned that you have to write what you're passionate about but also what fills a need in the current book market. Being a writer as well as an editor also gave me great empathy for other struggling writers, and when I had to reject a submission I tried to do it as nicely and encouragingly as I could.

Describe your current favorite go-to pair of shoes for daily wear.

Right now we're in the depths of winter here in Connecticut, and I have this enormous pair of brown fuzzy boots that I wear to wade through the snow and ice. They're so comfortable and warm. For the most part though, because most days I work from home, I keep my feet toasty in some snug slippers. Boring? Maybe, but absolutely essential for my creativity and productivity!

How about your most fun pair of shoes?

I have a pair of glam handmade shoes that are decorated with peacock feathers and another pair of glossy, cherry red peep-toe heels that make me feel beautiful inside and out every time I slip them on. Walking in them feels akin to teetering on a tightrope, but they're absolutely worth it!

List ten of your favorite books. Any genre, any style.

Disclaimer: This is an eclectic mix of classical, contemporary, adult and children's literature. I could easily add another hundred titles to this list (there are so many incredible books in the world!), but these ten are stories I turn to again and again.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams
The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
The Blue Castle by LM Montgomery
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by K.G. Campbell (And really anything written by Kate DiCamillo!)
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Holes by Louis Sachar
Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson


Congratulations to all of the recipients of The Sydney Taylor Book Award! Follow the blog tour featuring the 2016 gold and silver medalists all this week, February 8th-February 12th, hosted at a variety of blogs. Click here for the full blog tour schedule.

Learn more about the Sydney Taylor Book Award.
Visit the People of the Books Blog.
Visit Suzanne Nelson's website.

Little Willow [userpic]

Author Interviews

February 7th, 2016 (06:00 am)
optimistic

Current Mood: optimistic
Current Song: The Strange Love of Martha Ivers score music

This is the archive of exclusive interviews with authors I've conducted for the Bildungsroman blog and website, as well as interviews with other artists and actors I've written for other publications. The most recent interview is the first to be listed.

Suzanne Nelson (Serendipity's Footsteps)
Laurel Gale (Dead Boy)
Courtney Summers (All the Rage)
Una LaMarche (Like No Other)
Micol Ostow (Amity)
Julie Danielson and Betsy Bird (Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children's Literature)
Kelly Jensen (It Happens)
Jen Wang (In Real Life)
Shirley Vernick (The Black Butterfly)
Joy Preble (The A-Word)
Kirsten B. Feldman (No Alligators in Sight)
Varsha Bajaj (Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood)
Robyn Bavati (Dancing in the Dark)
Ilsa J. Bick (White Space)
Holly Schindler (The Junction of Sunshine and Lucky)
Alison Cherry (Red)
Chris and Kyle Bolton (Smash)
Alison Croggon (Black Spring)
Shirley Vernick (Remember Dippy)
Jessica Day George (Wednesdays in the Tower)
Shayne Leighton (Of Light and Darkness)
Hilary McKay (Lulu)
Leslie Stella (Permanent Record)
Lauren Baratz-Logsted (The Sisters 8)
Nataly Dawn (singer/songwriter, How I Knew Her)
Doreen Rappaport (Beyond Courage)
Kirsten Miller (How to Lead a Life of Crime)
Caroline B. Cooney (The Face on the Milk Carton)
Dallas Clayton (Make Magic! Do Good!)
Tara Altebrando (What Happens Here)
Kelly Thompson (The Girl Who Would Be King)
Leigh Dunlap (Halifax, A Cinderella Story)
Christopher Golden (Father Gaetano's Puppet Catechism)
Ashley Sandeman (The Thickening Water)
Ned Vizzini (The Other Normals)
Daniella Alonso (Revolution actress)
Megan Frazer Blakemore (Secrets of Truth and Beauty)
Elizabeth Zechel (Is There a Mouse in the Baby's Room)
Donna Freitas (Gold Medal Summer)
Peter H. Reynolds (Sky Color)
Iva-Marie Palmer (The End of the World as We Know It)
Lisa M. Stasse (The Forsaken)
Jennifer Miller (The Year of the Gadfly)
Dave Roman (Teen Boat!)
Tim Lebbon (The Sea Wolves)
Megan McDonald (Judy Moody)
Lisa Papademetriou (Confectionately Yours)
Mary Lowry (The Earthquake Machine)
Cecilia Galante (The Little Wings series)
Gaby Rodriguez (The Pregnancy Project)
Trina Robbins (Lily Renee, Escape Artist)
Susan Lee (Mastermind, Diary of a Mid-Life Crisis)
Beth Kanell (The Secret Room)
Loretta Ellsworth (Unforgettable)
Kristen Tracy (Sharks & Boys)
Anne Ursu (Breadcrumbs)
Erin McGuire (Breadcrumbs)
Tinsel Korey (The Twilight Saga actress)
Alexa Martin (Girl Wonder)
Elisabeth Rohm (Nerissa)
Mary E. Pearson (The Fox Inheritance)
Jane Mendelsohn (Innocence)
Maria Padian (Jersey Tomatoes Are the Best)
Emily Howse (Zitface)
Rachel Karns (Gray)
Shirley Vernick (The Blood Lie)
Janet Lee Carey (The Dragons of Noor)
Tim Lebbon & Christopher Golden (The Secret Journeys of Jack London)
Julia DeVillers & Jennifer Roy (Trading Faces)
Adele Griffin (The Julian Game)
Daisy Whitney (The Mockingbirds)
Maya Gold (Cinderella Cleaners)
Mary Jane Beaufrand (The River)
Loretta Chan (The Struggle to Be Strong)
Jamie Rich (12 Reasons Why I Love Her)
Lisa Shanahan (The Sweet, Terrible, Glorious Year I Truly, Completely Lost It)
Buzzy Jackson (Shaking the Family Tree: Blue Bloods, Black Sheep, and Other Obsessions of an Accidental Genealogist)
Kirsten Miller (Kiki Strike)
Jaclyn Moriarty (The Year of Secret Assignments)
Andrew Auseon (Freak Magnet)
Kristen Tracy (A Field Guide For Heartbreakers)
Sarah Mlynowski (Gimme a Call)
Holly Cupala (Tell Me a Secret)
J Torres and Jason Bone (Alison Dare)
Cecil Castellucci (Rose Sees Red)
Adele Griffin and Lisa Brown (Picture the Dead)
Melina Marchetta (Looking for Alibrandi)
Sarah Kuhn (One Con Glory)
Donna Freitas (This Gorgeous Game)
Holly Schindler (A Blue So Dark)
Barbara Dee (This is Me From Now On)
Julie Bowe (My Best Frenemy)
Meg Cabot (Runaway)
Robin Benway (The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May, & June)
Karen Cushman (Alchemy and Meggy Swann)
Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams (Goddess Girls)
Lauren Oliver (Before I Fall)
Cherie Priest (Boneshaker)
Carrie Ryan (The Dead-Tossed Waves)
Margo Lanagan (Tender Morsels)
Shula Klinger (The Kingdom of Strange)
Rachel Hawkins (Hex Hall)
Jen Calonita (Reality Check)
Elissa Brent Weissman (Standing for Socks)
Kristin Walker (A Match Made in High School)
Carrie Jones and Alyxandra Harvey (Captivate; Hearts at Stake)
Robin Friedman (The Importance of Wings)
Loretta Ellsworth (In a Heartbeat)
Melissa de la Cruz (The Ashleys)
E. Lockhart (The Treasure Map of Boys)
Joan Holub (Shampoodle)
Thomas Randall (The Waking: Dreams of the Dead)
Jacqui Robbins (Two of a Kind)
Laurie Faria Stolarz (Blue is for Nightmares)
Courtney Sheinmel (Positively)
Cynthia Leitich Smith (Rain is Not My Indian Name)
Tom Sniegoski (Legacy)
Laura Resau (The Indigo Notebook)
Tim Raglin (The 13 Days of Halloween)
Barbara Jean Hicks, Sue Hendra, and Erin Clarke (Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli)
Matt Phelan (The Storm in the Barn)
Amber Kizer (Meridian)
Thomas Randall (The Waking: Dreams of the Dead)
Melissa Wyatt (Funny How Things Change)
Tanita S. Davis (Mare's War)
Autumn Cornwell (Carpe Diem)
Cheryl Renee Herbsman (Breathing)
Lara Zeises (The Sweet Life of Stella Madison)
Neesha Meminger (Shine, Coconut Moon)
Alyson Noël (Evermore)
Terri & Brittany MacLeod (113 Things to Do By 13)
Jim Rugg (The Plain Janes)
Jessica Burkhart (Canterwood Crest)
Katie Alender (Bad Girls Don't Die)
Nikki Goldstein (GirlForce)
Grace Lin (Where the Mountain Meets the Moon)
Sarah Darer Littman (Purge)
Rachel Renee Russell (Dork Diaries: Tales From a Not-So-Fabulous Life)
Cylin Busby (The Year We Disappeared)
Lauren Myracle (Peace, Love, & Baby Ducks)
Thalia Chaltas (Because I Am Furniture)
Rosemary Clement-Moore (Prom Dates from H&!!)
Carolyn Hennesy (Pandora Gets Jealous)
Amber Benson (Death's Daughter)
Sarah Mlynowski (Parties & Potions)
Linda Urban (A Crooked Kind of Perfect)
Meg Cabot (Forever Princess)
Judy Blume (Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing)
Robin Benway (Audrey, Wait!)
Lisa Ann Sandell (Song of the Sparrow)
Emily Ecton (Boots and Pieces)
Sarah Darer Littman (Purge)
Luisa Plaja (Split by a Kiss)
Courtney Summers (Cracked Up to Be)
Tracie Vaughn Zimmer (The Floating Circus)
Helen Hemphill (The Adventurous Deeds of Deadwood Jones)
Amy Belasen and Jacob Osborn (Jenny Green's Killer Year)
Claire Mysko (You're Amazing! A No-Pressure Guide to Being Your Best Self)
Julie Kraut (Hot Mess: Summer in the City)
Barbara Jean Hicks (The Secret Life of Walter Kitty)
Carol Plum-Ucci (What Happened to Lani Garver)
Jen Calonita (Secrets of My Hollywood Life)
Debbie Reed Fischer (Swimming with the Sharks)
Taylor Morris (Total Knockout: Tale of an Ex-Class President)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 13)
Kristin O'Donnell Tubb (Autumn Winifred Does Things Different)
Nancy Viau (Samantha Hansen Has Rocks in Her Head)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 12)
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (In the Forests of the Night)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 11)
Paul Miller (Earthling Publications)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 10)
Courtney Sheinmel (My So-Called Family)
Suzanne Supplee (Artichoke's Heart)
Brooke Taylor (Undone)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 9)
Vivian French (The Robe of Skulls)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 8)
E. Lockhart, Sarah Mlynowski, and Lauren Myracle (How to Be Bad)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 7)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 6)
Alison McGhee (Snap)
Cherry Cheva (She's So Money)
Denise Vega (Fact of Life #31)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 5)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 4)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 3)
E.M. Crane (Skin Deep)
Jennifer Bradbury (Shift)
Tera Lynn Childs (Oh. My. Gods.)
Susane Colasanti (Take Me There)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 2)
Suzanne Harper (The Secret Life of Sparrow Delaney)
Ingrid Law (Savvy)
Christina Meldrum (Madapple)
Gaby Triana (The Temptress Four)
Christopher Golden (Serial Interview, Part 1)
Shannon Hale (Book of a Thousand Days)
Liz Tigelaar (PrettyTOUGH)
April Lurie (The Latent Powers of Dylan Fontaine)
Sara Hantz (The Second Virginity of Suzy Green)
Jody Gehrman (Confessions of a Triple Shot Betty)
Laura Preble (Queen Geeks Social Club)
Robin Wasserman (Seven Deadly Sins, Skinned)
Josie Bloss (Band Geek Love)
Cheryl Klam (The Pretty One)
Teri Brown (Read My Lips)
Kim Flores (Gamma Glamma)
D. Anne Love (Defying the Diva)
Cecilia Galante (The Patron Saint of Butterflies, Hershey Herself)
Jennifer E. Smith (The Comeback Season)
Lisa McMann (Wake)
Dorian Cirrone (Prom Kings and Drama Queens)
Carmen Rodrigues (Not Anything)
Mary E. Pearson (The Adoration of Jenna Fox)
Maryrose Wood (My Life: The Musical)
Jennifer Ziegler (How NOT to Be Popular)
Jamie Ponti (Prama)
Siobhan Vivian (A Little Friendly Advice)
Sherri L. Smith (Hot, Salty, Sour, Sweet)
Robin Palmer (Cindy Ella)
Daphne Grab (Alive and Well in Prague, New York)
Lesley M.M. Blume (Tennyson)
Sara Lewis Holmes (Letters From Rapunzel)
Gabrielle Zevin (Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac)
Beth Kephart (Undercover, House of Dance)
Melissa Walker (Violet on the Runway)
Amy Goldman Koss (The Girls)
Meg Cabot (The Princess Diaries)
Liz Gallagher (The Opposite of Invisible)
Justina Chen Headley (Girl Overboard)
Aimee Ferris (Girl Overboard)
Jo Knowles (Lessons from a Dead Girl)
Kirsten Miller (Kiki Strike)
Michele Jaffe (Bad Kitty)
Sara Shepard (Pretty Little Liars)
Rachel Cohn and David Levithan (Naomi & Ely's No Kiss List)
Micol Ostow (Emily Goldberg Learns to Salsa)
Maureen Johnson (Girl at Sea)
Tom Sniegoski (Owlboy: The Girl with the Destructo Touch)
Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Punk Farm)
Erik Brooks (Lucy's Pups)
Eric Luper (Big Slick)
Paula Brehm-Heeger (2007-2008 YALSA President)
Justina Chen Headley, Lorie Ann Grover, and Janet Lee Carey (Readergirlz: 31 Flavorites)
Melissa Lion (Swollen, Upstream)
Christopher Golden (Body of Evidence)
Holly Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Ironside)
Jay Asher (Thirteen Reasons Why)
Kelly Bingham (Shark Girl)
Simmone Howell (Notes from the Teenage Underground)
Deborah Davis (Not Like You)
Tom Sniegoski (Billy Hooten, Owlboy)
Sara Ryan (The Rules for Hearts)
Simone Elkeles (How to Ruin a Summer Vacation)
Julie Halpern (Get Well Soon)
Caroline Hickey (Cassie Was Here)
Gretchen Olson (Call Me Hope)
Stephanie Hale (Revenge of the Homecoming Queen)
C. Leigh Purtill (Love, Meg)
Dana Reinhardt (A Brief Chapter in My Impossible Life)
Ysabeau Wilce (Flora Segunda)
Christopher Golden (The Menagerie: Crashing Paradise)
Jordan Sonnenblick (Drums, Girls & Dangerous Pie)
Sameera "Sparrow" Righton via Mitali Perkins (First Daughter: Extreme American Makeover)
Sarah Beth Durst (Into the Wild)
Kristen Tracy (Lost It)
Alex Richards (Back Talk)
Janet Lee Carey (Dragon's Keep)
Sonya Sones (What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know)
Cecil Castellucci (Beige)
Joni Sensel (Reality Leak)
Dia Calhoun (The Phoenix Dance)
Nina Malkin (Orange is the New Pink)
Karen Day (Tall Tales)
Julie Bowe (My Last Best Friend)
Sarah Miller (Miss Spitfire)
Laurie Halse Anderson (Speak, Twisted)
Elizabeth Scott (Bloom)
Alex Flinn (Beastly, Diva)
Wendy Toliver (The Secret Life of a Teenage Siren)
Laura Bowers (Beauty Shop for Rent ...fully equipped, inquire within)
Jessica Day George (Dragon Slippers)
E. Lockhart (Dramarama)
Mary Wilcox (The Hollywood Sisters)
Debra Garfinkle (The Band)
Kristen Buckley (Tramps Like Us)
Crissa-Jean Chappell (Total Constant Order)
Liane Bonin (Fame Unlimited)
Heather Brewer (The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod)
Shannon Greenland (The Specialists)
Carrie Jones (Tips on Having a Gay (Ex) Boyfriend)
S.T. Underdahl (The Other Sister)
Kerry Madden (The Maggie Valley Trilogy)
Margo Rabb (Cures for Heartbreak)
Jenny Han (Shug, interview two)
Jennifer L. Holm (Penny From Heaven)
Justina Chen Headley, Lorie Ann Grover, Dia Calhoun, and Janet Lee Carey (Readergirlz)
Robin Friedman (The Girlfriend Project)
Tracie Vaughn Zimmer (Reaching for Sun)
Terie Garrison (The DragonSpawn Cycle)
Lisa Graff (The Thing about Georgie)
Alison Bell (Zibby Payne and the Terrible, Wonderful Tomboy Experiment)
Jeannine Garsee (Before, After, and Somebody In Between)
Deb Caletti (The Nature of Jade)
Wendy Mass (Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life)
Paula Chase (So Not the Drama)
Melissa Schorr (Goy Crazy)
Nina Wright (Homefree)
Helen Hemphill (Runaround)
Sara Zarr (Story of a Girl)
Christopher Golden (The Veil)
Garret Freymann-Weyr (Stay With Me)
Lauren Baratz-Logsted (Angel's Choice)
Kirby Larson (Hattie Big Sky)
Lesley M.M. Blume (Cornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset Sisters)
Bonnie Dobkin (Dream Spinner)
Pamela Lowell (Returnable Girl)
Lisa Yee (Millicent Min, Girl Genius)
Raina Telgemeier (BSC Graphix)
Marcy Dermansky (Twins)
Christine MacLean (How It's Done)
Alex McAulay (Bad Girls)
Kelly Parra (Graffiti Girl)
Janette Rallison (It's a Mall World After All)
Amy Saidens (Simon Pulse book cover artist)
Micol Ostow (30 Guys in 30 Days)
Erin Downing (Dancing Queen)
Aimee Friedman (A Novel Idea)
Kelly McClymer (Getting to Third Date)
Jennifer Echols (Major Crush)
Niki Burnham (Do-Over)
Sarah Bushweller and Emily S. Morris aka Libby Street (Accidental It Girl)
Gena Showalter (Oh My Goth)
Justina Chen Headley (Nothing But the Truth (and a few white lies))
Bev Katz Rosenbaum (I Was a Teenage Popsicle)
Christopher Golden (Straight on 'til Morning)
Laura Wiess (Such a Pretty Girl)
Cara Lockwood (Bard Academy: Wuthering High)
Caridad Ferrer (Adios to My Old Life, interview two)
Beth Killian (The 310: Life as a Poser)
Jenny O'Connell (Plan B)
Tara Altebrando (The Pursuit of Happiness, interview two)
Susan Taylor Brown (Hugging the Rock)
Jenny Han (Shug)
Justine Larbalestier and Scott Westerfeld (Magic or Madness, Uglies)
Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Golden)
Tom Sniegoski (Serial Interview, Part 4)
A. Lee Martinez (Gil's All Fright Diner)
Tom Sniegoski (Serial Interview, Part 3)
Jordan Roter (Girl in Development)
Tom Sniegoski (Serial Interview, Part 2)
Lorie Ann Grover (On Pointe, Hold Me Tight)
Caridad Ferrer (Adios to My Old Life)
Chris Abouzeid (Anatopsis)
Tom Sniegoski (Serial Interview, Part 1)
Ally Carter (I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You)
Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
Rachel Cohn and David Levithan (Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist)
Tanya Lee Stone (A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl)
Serena Robar (braced2bite)
Mari Mancusi (Boys That Bite)
Cynthia Lord (Rules)
Sarah Dessen (Just Listen)
Tara Altebrando (The Pursuit of Happiness)
Polly Shulman (Enthusiasm)
Jeanne Birdsall (The Penderwicks)
Amber Benson and Christopher Golden (Ghosts of Albion: Accursed)
Christopher Golden (Last Breath)
Christopher Golden (The Monster Book)
Christopher Golden (Strangewood)
Christopher Golden (Body of Evidence)

Themed interviews with multiple authors:
Tell Me a Secret
What Makes You Smile
Art Saves
Family Ties
Definitions of Hope
Their Favorite Books
Looking Forward

This archive is mirrored at the Bildungsroman website.

Little Willow [userpic]

Poetry Friday: The Awakening of Dermuid by Austin Clarke

February 5th, 2016 (06:00 am)
thoughtful

Current Mood: thoughtful
Current Song: Wait For It from Hamilton

Sleepy moths fluttered
In her dark eyes,
And her lips grew quieter
Than lullabies.
Swaying with the reedgrass
Over the stream
Lazily she lingered
Cradling a dream.

- the final stanza of The Awakening of Dermuid by Austin Clarke

Read the poem in its entirety.

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

Little Willow [userpic]

Eric Luper's Website

February 3rd, 2016 (06:00 pm)
artistic
Tags: , ,

Current Mood: artistic
Current Song: The X-Files score music by Mark Snow




Eric Luper's website has a brand-new look!

Eric Luper is an author for young readers. In addition to two series with Scholastic Books called Key Hunters and The Chocolate Lab, Eric writes for Cartoon Network for shows including The Amazing World of Gumball, The Regular Show, and Teen Titans Go! He also has written titles for Scooby-Doo, Star Trek, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, as well as young adult novels, including Seth Baumgartner's Love Manifesto and Big Slick.

Visit ericluper.com

Little Willow [userpic]

Booklist: Tough Issues for Teens

February 2nd, 2016 (07:30 am)
hopeful

Current Mood: hopeful
Current Song: Just Enough by Aslyn

One afternoon in the bookstore, a young woman in her late teens approached me and said, "Excuse me. Can you help me? I want some books like . . . " She named a few teen fiction titles that dealt with drug abuse and anorexia. She looked slightly uncomfortable but mostly excited. I told her that I could recommend many good books. Within minutes, she was sitting on the floor in the teen fiction section, a plastic basket full to the brim with books, with additional titles in her hand and next to her knees and her feet.

We had a great discussion. I was happy on any levels: happy that she felt comfortable enough to come to me, happy that she was open-minded, happy that I got some realistic, well-written books in her hand. This urged me to make a list of books dealing tough issues - eating disorders, loss and grieving, addiction, abuse, and so forth.

Due to subject matter, many of these books are recommended for older teens as well as adults, be they parents, teachers, librarians, or simply avid readers.

I've read every title on this list, and have given each book a rating according to the United States movie rating guide - G, PG, PG-13, or R - based on content, and a number of stars - four being the best - based on quality (my personal opinion).



PARENTAL ABUSE OR NEGLECT - Physical or emotional abuse, alcoholism, etc.
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ABUSE BY OTHERS - physical or emotional abuse; date or acquaintance rape; accusations, secrets and lies
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TEACHER/STUDENT RELATIONSHIPS - be they romantic relationships or rumors or no romance, but a definite abuse of power
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POSITIVE & PLATONIC TEACHER/STUDENT RELATIONSHIPS - teachers positively influencing and educating their pupils
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PARENT/CHILD RELATIONSHIPS - reconnecting with or distancing oneself from absentee parents, dealing with restrictions and expectations
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LONG-LOST SIBLINGS - reconnecting with siblings, or meeting them for the first time
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ORIENTATION AND/OR GENDER ROLES
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VIOLENCE AT SCHOOL
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EATING DISORDERS
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PHYSICAL DISORDERS/INJURIES/SPECIAL NEEDS - protagonist, siblings, friends
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BODY CHANGES - growing up and dealing with natural physical changes (as opposed to health, weight, or body image issues; disorders/injuries are in a separate list above this one)
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TEENAGE PREGNANCY - may also deal with adoption and/or abortion
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TEENAGE ALCOHOLISM
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MENTAL ILLNESS OF A PARENT, RELATIVE, OR PEER
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DEPRESSION
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RECOVERY/SUPPORT GROUPS
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CUTTING
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STEALING
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DIVORCE, SEPARATION, AND/OR STEPFAMILIES - parents dating, getting remarried, etc
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LOSS OR PHYSICAL ILLNESS OF A PARENT
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LOSS OR ILLNESS OF A SIBLING
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LOSS OR ILLNESS OF A FRIEND OR PEER
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LOSS OR ILLNESS OF A GRANDPARENT
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LOSS OR ILLNESS OF ANOTHER CLOSE RELATIVE AND/OR ADULT
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PROTAGONIST WITH AN ILLNESS
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DRUG ADDICTION
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CAR ACCIDENTS (and similar accidents)
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INCARCERATION OF A RELATIVE
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ADOPTION - Also foster care, group homes, and counseling
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KIDNAPPING
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CULTURAL IDENTITY
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SUICIDE OR SUICIDAL TENDENCIES
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ACADEMICS - cheating, excelling, or otherwise dealing with academic pressure
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SOCIAL STATUS - at school or otherwise with peers; popularity, bullying, et al.
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PEER PRESSURE
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RELIGION
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POLITICS
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ACTIVISM
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INTERNET SAFETY - and/or cyberbullying
Read more...Collapse )

SEEKING SHELTER - family shelters, homelessness, runaways
Read more...Collapse )

I hope that this list helps readers of all ages find books they may be too shy to openly discuss with a bookseller or librarian. I want those readers to know they may leave a comment here and tell me which books they have found valuable. Most of all, I want them to know they can talk to their friends or adults they know in order to get the answers and help they may need.

If you would like for me to add more titles about a certain subject, or if you want more information about any of the books on the list, please leave a comment.

Special thanks to those who have shown their support of this list by offering me links, comments, and compliments, such as Jen Robinson, Bookseller Chick, Robin Brande, Sassymonkey at BlogHer, Daisy Whitney, Caroline, Bookstore People, and Jennifer R. Hubbard.

Little Willow [userpic]

Best Books of January 2016

January 31st, 2016 (06:29 am)
nostalgic

Current Mood: nostalgic
Current Song: She Said by Brie Larson

January 2016: 43 books and scripts read

I read a great deal of unpublished scripts and manuscripts this month, so I cannot include those titles on this list. I do have two recommendations: Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson and Sunny Side Up by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm, both full-color graphic novels for kids and tweens. Click the titles to read my reviews.

Little Willow [userpic]

Poetry Friday: The Sedges by Seumas O'Sullivan

January 29th, 2016 (06:00 am)
nostalgic

Current Mood: nostalgic
Current Song: Leverage score music by Joseph LoDuca

I whispered my great sorrow
To every listening sedge;
And they bent, bowed with my sorrow,
Down to the water's edge.

But she stands and laughs lightly
To see me sorrow so,
Like the light winds that laughing
Across the water go.

If I could tell the bright ones
That quiet-hearted move,
They would bend down like the sedges
With the sorrow of love.

But she stands laughing lightly,
Who all my sorrow knows,
Like the little wind that laughing
Across the water blows.

- The Sedges by Seumas O'Sullivan

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

Little Willow [userpic]

Poetry Friday: Happy Ending? by Shel Silverstein

January 22nd, 2016 (06:00 am)
amused

Current Mood: amused
Current Song: The X-Files score music by Mark Snow

Happy ending?
There are no happy endings.
Endings are the saddest part,
So just give me a happy middle
And a very happy start.

- by Shel Silverstein

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

Little Willow [userpic]

#tothegirls2016

January 21st, 2016 (05:47 pm)
thankful
Tags: , ,

Current Mood: thankful
Current Song: What'd I Miss from the musical Hamilton

Last year, author Courtney Summers posted:

"I write about girls.

"I write about girls because every girl deserves the opportunity to pick up a book and see herself in its pages.

"I write about girls because girls, and their stories, matter.

"It's my way of letting them know."


On April 14th, 2015, she posted this with the hashtag #tothegirls to tell girls all over the world that they are seen, heard, and loved. People all over the world chimed in on social media, posting messages of support and encouragement, sharing thoughts and quotes both funny and profound.

Today, January 21st, it's time to spread the word again. Use the hashtag #tothegirls2016 along with your personal message of support and encouragement on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram, your blog, your vlog, wherever you see fit. Write a note on your wipe-off board on the door of your dorm room or stick a Post-It note on your family's fridge or bathroom mirror. Share the message, and share the love.

From Courtney's article today in The Guardian:

Sometimes, I think of my novels as letters to their readers.

The difficult, often hard-to-like female protagonists and the particular set of challenges they face may change from book to book, but the underlying message - the heart of the story - is always the same: whatever you're going through and however you feel, you’re not alone.

One of fiction's greatest powers is its ability to reveal the parts of ourselves we're most afraid to show; both the ugly and the beautiful. When a reader sees their secrets on the page, there's a chance it can make a world of difference for them. It can lessen the weight of those secrets to the point the reader can breathe just a little bit easier and to the point, even, the reader might be able to say their secrets out loud.

Sometimes, saying a secret out loud changes a life.

Sometimes, saying a secret out loud saves it.

I'm not the first person to express this and I won't be the last: a book can be a lifeline.


Read the full article at theguardian.com

For more information, visit http://tothegirls2016.tumblr.com and follow Courtney Summers on Twitter @courtney_s

A few thoughts from me to the girls in 2016 and beyond:

You are awesome.
You can do this.
Just breathe.
Just believe.


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