Behind the Scenes: “Finding the Focus in Big Picture History” by Jennifer Thermes

My sister was the one who loved horses in my family. A pair of disgruntled ponies instilled a wariness in me, but as an adult, I appreciate the beauty and power of horses. Jennifer Thermes’ new picture book HORSE POWER: HOW HORSES CHANGED THE WORLD caught my eye after I had spent time thoroughly enjoying … More Behind the Scenes: “Finding the Focus in Big Picture History” by Jennifer Thermes

Mining for Heart: “Embracing and Learning from Your Cultural Heritage” by Songju Ma Daemicke

Today, we get to celebrate a book birthday with this post! Congratulations to author Songju Ma Daemicke and illustrator Lin on the release of TU YOUYOU’S DISCOVERY. Thank you for sharing the cultural heart of the story, Songju, and also, thank you for offering a GIVEAWAY! Leave a comment below for a chance to win … More Mining for Heart: “Embracing and Learning from Your Cultural Heritage” by Songju Ma Daemicke

Behind the Scenes: “Beyond Biographies of People” by Kirsten Larson

Even the nonliving can have a life of their own! So why not a biography of Wonder Woman?! I can’t wait to explore Kirsten Larson’s A TRUE WONDER! Thanks for sharing your process, Kirsten!  Kirsten is offering a GIVEAWAY, too! A copy of A TRUE WONDER! Just leave a comment below to enter.  “Beyond Biographies of People” … More Behind the Scenes: “Beyond Biographies of People” by Kirsten Larson

Countdown to the RESTLESS WRIGGLE!

One month until TAD LINCOLN’S RESTLESS WRIGGLE gets loose! Expect PANDEMONIUM. Hope for PATIENCE.   Discover 1863 IN THE PRESIDENT’S HOUSE! School is starting, and kids everywhere are getting to know each other. So let’s get to know Tad Lincoln.  To view the BOOK TRAILER, download an EDUCATOR’S GUIDE, and learn more about TAD LINCOLN’S RESTLESS … More Countdown to the RESTLESS WRIGGLE!

Behind the Scenes: “Working with Experts to Verify Information in Back Matter” by Debra Shumaker

One of the challenges with nonfiction, whether a full manuscript or elements within an otherwise fictional story, is vetting. Sounds easy, right? Well, sometimes that little fact check turns into its very own rabbit hole and swallows up a huge chunk of time. I’ve been there! Here, Debra Shumaker shares her experience with one little … More Behind the Scenes: “Working with Experts to Verify Information in Back Matter” by Debra Shumaker

Freaky, Funky Fish: Odd Facts About Fascinating Fish

If you’ve ever thought that informational nonfiction might be dry….you need to see FREAKY, FUNKY FISH by Debra Shumaker and Claire Powell. My Perfect Picture Book Friday pick, this picture book will surely have your jaw dropping, smiles spreading, and awe popping at the wonders of nature. Come back next week when Debra Shumaker shares … More Freaky, Funky Fish: Odd Facts About Fascinating Fish

Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Today, for Perfect Picture Book Friday, I’m sharing another favorite from the “BEST of 2020” lists. EXQUISITE: THE POETRY AND LIFE OF GWENDOLYN BROOKS truly is exquisite! Suzanne Slade is another favorite author who continually teaches me about the craft of writing picture books. Congratulations to Ruthie Kirk! You’ve won a copy of IS IT … More Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Mining for Heart: “Heart in Action—Louder than Words”

With Father’s Day approaching, it seems fitting to celebrate a father who gave the gift of patience. “Heart in Action — Louder Than Words” Tad Lincoln was a boy of action. Lots of action. Endless Action. To the point he drove everyone around him crazy. Except his father. One father/son action had sparked my interest … More Mining for Heart: “Heart in Action—Louder than Words”

Mining for Heart: “Heart in Picture Books: A Treasure Map to Emotional Resonance” by Kim Tomsic

I’ve come to believe that the most important element in a picture book, or any story for that matter, is what I call “heart.” Digging it out can be agonizing. But if you’re lucky, it might float to the surface in a haunting question or pop out with a shiver of goosebumps. And then, of … More Mining for Heart: “Heart in Picture Books: A Treasure Map to Emotional Resonance” by Kim Tomsic

Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson’s Journey to the Stars

Popping in with a Perfect Picture Book Friday recommendation. This book is in my top 10 for 2020—a lyrical, gorgeous, important book about the power of music. Don’t miss it!  Title: Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson’s Journey to the Stars Written by:  Gary Golio Illustrated by: E.B. Lewis Nancy Paulsen Books/PRH 2020, biography … More Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson’s Journey to the Stars