Thursday, November 30, 2006

Horn Book Fanfare List

Horn Book Fanfare list has been posted. Get it at

I was happy to see some of my favorites make the list. I'm making my
list and love seeing what others are thinking. Horn Book picks that
I have on my list (so far). I'm sure more will appear as my list
gets finalized.

Marvelous Mattie by Emily Arnold
Mama by Jeanette Winter
John, Paul, George, and Ben by Lane Smith
Ballet of the Elephants by Leda Schubert
Freedom Walkers by Russell Freedman
An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Clay by David Almond
Flotsam by David Wiesner

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Best Books Lists

This is the time of year that many of us start
thinking about our favorite books of the
year. As I put together my list, I like to look
at what others have chosen for the best book
lists. SLJ has a very long list but I can't say
I see one that I didn't like. Kirkus' list is
shorter and must be harder to prepare! And I
like looking at the Shortbread list from the UK
to see what teens are enjoying overseas.

SLJ Best Books of

ANDERSON, M. T. The Astonishing Life of Octavian
Nothing, Traitor to the Nation: Volume I: The Pox
Party. Candlewick. Tr $17.99. ISBN 0-7636-2402-0.
BANKS, Kate. Max’s Words. illus. by Boris
Kulikov. Farrar/Frances Foster Bks.Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-39949-2.
BEST, Cari. Sally Jean, the Bicycle Queen. illus.
by Christine Davenier. Farrar/Melanie Kroupa Bks. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-35386-2.
BOYCE, Frank Cottrell. Framed. HarperCollins. Tr
$16.99. ISBN 0-06-073402-7; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-073403-5.
BROOKS, Kevin. The Road of the Dead.
Scholastic/The Chicken House. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-439-78623-1.
BRUCHAC, Joseph. Wabi: A Hero’s Tale. Dial. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3098-5.
CARBONE, Elisa. Blood on the River: James Town
1607. Viking. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-670-06060-7.
CHILD, Lauren. But Excuse Me That Is My Book.
illus. by author. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3096-9.
CHILD, Lauren, adapt. The Princess and the Pea.
photos. by Polly Borland. illus. by adapter.
Hyperion. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-7868-3886-8.
DICAMILLO, Kate. The Miraculous Journey of Edward
Tulane. illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline. Candlewick.
Tr $18.99. ISBN 0-7636-2589-2.
DRAPER, Sharon M. Copper Sun. S & S/Atheneum. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-689-82181-6.
EILENBERG, Max, retel. Beauty and the Beast.
illus. by Angela Barrett. Candlewick. RTE $17.99. ISBN 0-7636-3160-4.
FISHER, Valorie. How High Can a Dinosaur Count?:
And Other Math Mysteries. illus. by author.
Random/Schwartz & Wade Bks. Tr $16.95. ISBN
0-375-83608-X; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93608-4.
FLEISCHMAN, Sid. Escape!: The Story of the Great
Houdini. HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $18.99.
ISBN 0-06-085694-9; PLB $19.89. ISBN 0-06-085095-7.
FRADIN, Judith Bloom & Dennis Brindell Fradin.
5,000 Miles to Freedom: Ellen and William Craft’s
Flight from Slavery. National Geographic. Tr
$19.95.ISBN 0-7922-7885-2; PLB $29.90. ISBN 0-7922-7886-0.
FREEDMAN, Russell. The Adventures of Marco Polo.
illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline. Scholastic/Arthur
A. Levine Bks. RTE $17.99. ISBN 0-439-52394-X.
FREEDMAN, Russell. Freedom Walkers: The Story of
the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Holiday House. Tr $18.95. ISBN 0-8234-2031-0.
FROST, Helen. The Braid. Farrar/Frances Foster
Bks. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-30962-0.
GARDEN, Nancy. Endgame. Harcourt. Tr $16. ISBN 0-15-205416-2.
GOING, K. L. Saint Iggy. Harcourt. Tr $17. ISBN 0-15-205795-1.
HARDINGE, Frances. Fly by Night. HarperCollins.
Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-06-087627-1; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-087629-8.
HENKES, Kevin. Lilly’s Big Day. illus. by author.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $15.99. ISBN
0-06-074236-4; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-074237-2.
HIMMELMAN, John. Chickens to the Rescue. illus.
by author. Holt. RTE $16.95. ISBN 0-8050-7951-3.
HOPKINSON, Deborah. Up before Daybreak: Cotton
and People in America. Scholastic Nonfiction. Tr
$18.99. ISBN 0-439-63901-8. (June)
JENKINS, Emily. Toys Go Out: Being the Adventures
of a Knowledgeable Stingray, a Toughy Little
Buffalo, and Someone Called Plastic. illus. by
Paul O. Zelinsky. Random/Schwartz & Wade Bks. Tr
$16.95. ISBN 0-375-83604-7; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93604-1.
JOHNSON, Harriet McBryde. Accidents of Nature.
Holt. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-8050-7634-4.
KLASS, David. Firestorm. Farrar/Frances Foster
Bks. Tr $17. ISBN 0-374-32307-0.
KNUDSEN, Michelle. Library Lion. illus. by Kevin
Hawkes. Candlewick. RTE $15.99. ISBN 0-7636-2262-1.
KRULL, Kathleen. Isaac Newton. illus. by Boris
Kulikov. Viking. Tr $15.99. ISBN 0-670-05921-8.
LARSON, Kirby. Hattie Big Sky. Delacorte. Tr
$15.95. ISBN 0-385-73313-5; PLB $17.99. ISBN 0-375-90332-4.
LEVINE, Gail Carson. Fairest. HarperCollins. Tr
$16.99. ISBN 0-06-073408-6; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-073409-4.
LEWIS, J. Patrick. Black Cat Bone: The Life of
Blues Legend Robert Johnson. illus. by Gary
Kelley. Creative Editions. Tr $19.95. ISBN 1-56846-194-1.
LOOK, Lenore. Ruby Lu, Empress of Everything.
illus. by Anne Wilsdorf. S & S/Atheneum/Anne
Schwartz Bks. RTE $15.95. ISBN 0-689-86460-4.
LUPTON, Hugh & Daniel Morden. The Adventures of
Odysseus. illus. by Christina Balit. Barefoot. Tr $19.99. ISBN 1-84148-800-3.
LYGA, Barry. The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy
and Goth Girl. Houghton. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-618-72392-7.
MCCARTHY, Meghan. Aliens Are Coming!: The True
Account of the 1938 War of the Worlds Radio
Broadcast. illus. by author. Knopf. Tr $16.95.
ISBN 0-375-83518-0; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93518-5.
MCLEOD, Bob. SuperHero ABC. illus. by author.
HarperCollins. Tr $15.99. ISBN 0-06-074514-2; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-074515-0.
MARCUS, Leonard S., ed. & comp. The Wand in the
Word: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy.
Candlewick. RTE $19.99. ISBN 0-7636-2625-2.
MONTGOMERY, Sy. Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An
Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea.
photos. by Nic Bishop. Houghton. Tr $18. ISBN 0-618-49641-6.
MORRISON, Taylor. Wildfire. illus. by author.
Houghton/Walter Lorraine Bks. Tr $17. ISBN 0-618-50900-3.
MURDOCK, Catherine Gilbert. Dairy Queen. Houghton. Tr $16. ISBN 0-618-68307-0.
PATENT, Dorothy Hinshaw. The Buffalo and the
Indians: A Shared Destiny. illus. by William
Muñoz. Clarion. Tr $18. ISBN 0-618-48570-8.
PENNYPACKER, Sara. Clementine. illus. by Marla
Frazee. Hyperion. RTE $14.99. ISBN 0-7868-3882-5.
PINKNEY, Jerry. The Little Red Hen. illus. by
author. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-2935-9.
PITZER, Susanna. Not Afraid of Dogs. illus. by
Larry Day. Walker. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-8027-8067-9;
RTE $17.85. ISBN 0-8027-8068-7. LC 2005027500.
RAMPERSAD, Arnold & David Roessel, eds. Langston
Hughes. illus. by Benny Andrews. Sterling. PLB $14.95. ISBN 1-4027-1845-4.
REEVE, Philip. Larklight: A Rousing Tale of
Dauntless Pluck in the Farthest Reaches of Space.
illus. by David Wyatt. Bloomsbury. Tr $16.95. ISBN 1-59990-020-3.
ROY, Jennifer. Yellow Star. Marshall Cavendish. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-7614-5277-X.
SHUSTERMAN, Neal. Everlost. S & S. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-689-87237-2.
SIEGEL, Siena Cherson. To Dance: A Ballerina’s
Graphic Novel. illus. by Mark Siegel. S &
S/Atheneum/Richard Jackson Bks. RTE $17.95. ISBN
0-689-86747-6; pap. $9.99. ISBN 1-4169-2687-9.
SÍS, Peter. Play, Mozart, Play! illus. by author.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $16.99. ISBN
0-06-112181-9; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-112182-7.
SMEE, Nicola. Clip-Clop. illus. by author. Boxer
Bks., dist. by Sterling. Tr $18.95. ISBN 1-905417-09-8.
SMITH, Lane. John, Paul, George & Ben. illus. by
author. Hyperion. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-7868-4893-6.
STANLEY, Diane. Bella at Midnight. illus. by
Bagram Ibatoulline. HarperCollins. Tr $15.99.
ISBN 0-06-077573-4; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-077574-2.
STEVENSON, Robert Louis. The Moon. illus. by
Tracey Campbell Pearson. Farrar. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-35046-9.
STURTEVANT, Katherine. A True and Faithful
Narrative. Farrar. Tr $17. ISBN 0-374-37809-6.
TODD, Mark & Esther Pearl Watson. Whatcha Mean,
What’s a Zine?: The Art of Making Zines and
Mini-Comics. illus. by authors. Houghton/Graphia.
pap. $12.99. ISBN 0-618-56315-6.
TURNER, Megan Whalen. The King of Attolia.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $16.99. ISBN
0-06-083577-X; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-083578-8.
VAN LEEUWEN, Jean. Benny & Beautiful Baby
Delilah. illus. by LeUyen Pham. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-2891-3.
WALKER, Paul Robert. Remember Little Bighorn:
Indians, Soldiers, and Scouts Tell Their Stories.
National Geographic. Tr $17.95. ISBN
0-7922-5521-6; PLB $27.90. ISBN 0-7922-5522-4.
WEATHERFORD, Carole Boston. Moses: When Harriet
Tubman Led Her People to Freedom. illus. by Kadir
Nelson. Hyperion/Jump at the Sun. RTE $15.99. ISBN 0-7868-5175-9.
WERLIN, Nancy. The Rules of Survival. Dial. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3001-2.
WIESNER, David. Flotsam. illus. by author.
Clarion. RTE $17. ISBN 0-618-19457-6.
WINTER, Jonah. Dizzy. illus. by Sean Qualls.
Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Bks. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-439-50737-5.
WOLF, Allan. Immersed in Verse: An Informative,
Slightly Irreverent & Totally Tremendous Guide to
Living the Poet’s Life. illus. by Tuesday
Mourning. Sterling/Lark. PLB $14.95. ISBN 1-57990-628-1.
YANG, Gene Luen. American Born Chinese. illus. by
author. Roaring Brook/First Second. pap. $18.95.
ISBN 1-59643-152-0. LC number unavailable.
YORINKS, Arthur. Mommy? paper engineering by
Matthew Reinhart. illus. by Maurice Sendak.
Scholastic/Michael di Capua Bks. Tr $24.95. ISBN 0-439-88050-5.
ZUSAK, Markus. The Book Thief. Knopf. Tr $16.95.
ISBN 0-375-83100-2; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93100-7.

PW List of Best Books Kirkus Best Books of


The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing M.T. Anderson (Candlewick)
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane Kate
DiCamillo, illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline(Candlewick)
Saint Iggy K.L. Going (Harcourt)
Fly by Night Frances Hardinge (HarperCollins)
Incantation Alice Hoffman (Little, Brown)
Firestorm David Klass (FSG/Foster)
Keturah and Lord Death Martine Leavitt (Front Street)
Fairest Gail Carson Levine (HarperCollins)
Sold Patricia McCormick (Hyperion)
Clementine Sara Pennypacker, illus. by Marla Frazee (Hyperion)
The Book Thief Markus Zusak (Knopf)


Pick Me Up (DK)
Escape! The Story of the Great Houdini. Sid
Fleischman (HarperCollins/Greenwillow)
To Dance: A Ballerina's Graphic Novel. Siena
Cherson Siegel, illus. by Mark Siegel (Atheneum/Jackson)

Kirkus has released their
Children's Books of 2006 list.

The Costa Shortlist (formerly

* Clay by David Almond (groan)
* The Diamond of Drury Lane by Julia Golding
* Set in Stone by Linda Newbery
* Just in Case by Meg Rosoff

Let the award speculation begin!

Friday, November 24, 2006


Well, the turkey is just leftovers now and the early morning rush of black Friday sales is behind me now. It never ceases to amaze how many people are out in the wee hours of the morning the day after Thanksgiving. Of course I wouldn't know that unless I was one of them. I got in line for a big screen tv at 2:30 this morning. We were told the store had 10 units and I was number 10 in line!! They didn't go on sale until 5:00 but it would be worth it. Until I found out at 4:30 that they had miscounted and really only had 9 units. Arrgghh. Well, more time for me to read!

I started Anderson's Octavian Nothing last week after it won the National Book Award. And somehow, half way through the book, it disappeared! I hope it shows up soon. I was having a book fair at school and I'm so afraid it got mixed up with the books. I called the book salesman to be on the look out for it. It is a signed advance copy so they shouldn't try to sell it.

So in the meantime, I picked up Michael Sullivan's Escapade Johnson and Mayhem at Mount Moosilauke. What a hoot! I'm so glad to find books that boys will enjoy and Michael certainly does understand the humor of tween boys. Way to go Michael. I'm looking forward to more!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Back on line

My ISP has fixed whatever the problem was and I am back online. I have uploaded the podcasts for the last few days. I've also updated the booktalks with the November update.

Between having ISP problems and migrating to a new laptop, it has made me ultra-aware of my dependency on technology and connectivity. With the use of web 2.0 applications comes the dependence on reliable connectivity. On the positive side, the migration to the new laptop was easier this time since a lot of my materials were on line anyway. I have my books cataloged in LibraryThing. My bookmarks are managed through My home page is managed by pageflakes. I have several of my current documents in google.doc. One of my webpages is now a wiki. Wow, how web 2.0 applications have saved me a lot of work. On the other hand, not being able to upload files into my website had me in a tizzy. And when I lost my network connection and couldn't get into the Internet, I was stranded. I am becoming more and more dependent on being able to access the Internet, it is a bit worrisome when I can't get into it. I now have backups for my web materials because I know I don't want to be totally dependent on having my data managed by others.

Even so, I have added my new books to Librarything. Edited my book in google.doc. And added to my wiki. I guess I'm just hooked on the ease of using web 2.0 applications!

Friday, November 10, 2006

My its been a long time...

Since I last updated the blog, several things have happened on the web front for the Booktalker. In addition to keeping up with the additions to Booktalks Quick and Simple, there is now a podcast going on. That's right!

Booktalks is now a daily podcast. Actually, it started back in May and has been going on for six months now. My service provider is having a problem with the server so I haven't been able to upload for a couple of days but there will be more podcasts coming!

I have also transitioned the ATN Reading lists to a wiki site. I have been agonizing over how to keep the lists up to date. With well over 1,000 lists now, it is taking more and more of my time. And I have so much else going on that I just don't have the time to keep ATN up and running. Now as a wiki, it is much easier. And I have had lots of help. I have left the wiki open for editing and many people have been taking advantage of that and adding new books to the lists (and fixing my typos). I have had two pages blown away but I am resisting closing the wiki at this point. I am assuming that both instances were accidental and not malicious. I have been able to restore both pages. Check out the wiki when you get a chance Drop me a note and let me know what you think.