Archive for September, 2011
A warm welcome to our friend Marin, a fellow kids’ and teen book enthusiast! Marin is currently a grad student in library school and loves reviewing books as much as we do. Here’s her latest review of the Caldecott Award winning book by Brian Selznick, soon to be released as a movie in theaters.
The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
A grumpy man, a brash girl, a broken automaton, filmmaking and Paris; what do these things have in common? Selznick combines them in descriptive prose and emotive illustrations to construct a unique reading experience. A young orphan living in a hidden room in a Parisian train station in 1931 is skilled at fixing things but has to shoplift to survive. One day he is caught stealing and the fast-paced adventure begins.
Going back and forth seamlessly between series of wordless images and more traditional text the narrative describes what happens when Hugo becomes an apprentice to a mysterious grumpy toy booth owner and meets his god-daughter. The two children set out to unravel a mystery that changes all of their lives.
Pencil sketches combine with historical photographs of Paris and stills from black and white movies to create a distinctive setting and mood for the characters’ adventures. A fun way to introduce readers to silent films, the study and practice of magic, and the creativity and variety of possibility in invention.
2008 Caldecott Award Winner
Copyright January 2007
Also be sure to check out Brian Selznick’s newest book in the same mixed style of beautiful images and text, Wonderstruck, released just last week to critical acclaim (see what the New York Times has to say here). And thanks to Marin for sharing her review and love of awesome books!
I Always, Always Get My Way by Thad Krasnesky; illustrated by David Parkins
In this cute and clever picture book, a precocious three-year-old tells all about the times she could have gotten in trouble… and didn’t. She spills orange juice on Dad, but her mom let’s her off because “After all… she’s only three.” She topples over her brothers model roller coaster and he takes the blame. When she “borrows” her sister’s skateboard to build onto her doll house and her sister has the nerve to take it back, the story is similar.
Events finally catch up to our narrator, however, when she loots the silver cabinet for buried reassure, floods the entire second floor, and dresses her brother’s pet iguana in a dolly’s bathing suit (among other charges). (more…)
As you may have noticed, despite our best intentions September has been another slow–and so far totally non-existent–review month. Though Ruby and I have a ton of reviews we need to write up and process, life has this way of keeping us on our toes, and about seven different things have popped up out of the woodwork in the past few weeks. We both have a ton of reviews germinating in our brains–we just need the time and energy to write them all up!
In the meantime, there are a bunch of great kids’ and teen author events going on in Seattle in the coming weeks. (Tons of Ruby’s and my favorite authors are going to be in town!) Be sure to check out upcoming group and author events at:
- Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park (teen writing groups, Alexa Martin, Cinda Williams, Maggie Stiefvater, James Dashner, Alyson Noël, Mary E. Pearson)
- University Bookstore (Lisa Mantchev)
- Barnes & Noble in University Village (Eric Korhel)
- Barnes & Noble in Lynnwood (Brandon Mull, Peter Brown, Obert Skye, Lauren Oliver, Kiersten White, Gabrielle Zevin, James Dashner)
- Seattle Public Library (Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis, Scott Westerfeld, Art Spiegelman, Sherman Alexie, Jay Asher)
Keep in mind, if I’d listed ALL the author events at ALL the locations, that list would be about three times as long. A lot of times authors will hit a few locations in each city, so just because I didn’t mention a duplicate doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check out the store/library calendar.
See you all there!