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wmtc: what i’m reading: the golden compass by philip pullman

The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman, has been on my to-read list since it was first published in the mid-1990s. Although I generally don’t read fantasy fiction, after reading an outstanding review in The New York Times Book Review, I was very intrigued. Thanks to the Teen Book Club I facilitate at the library, I . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading: the golden compass by philip pullman

wmtc: the so-called "y.a. debate" rages on, but doesn’t a debate have two sides?

In June of this year, Slate ran a now-infamous piece called “Against YA,” in which Ruth Graham argued that adults shouldn’t read young-adult fiction, and should be embarrassed if they do. A flood of posts and essays were written in response; my own response is here. In the short term, as far as I can tell, not . . . → Read More: wmtc: the so-called "y.a. debate" rages on, but doesn’t a debate have two sides?

wmtc: things i heard at the library: an occasional series: #13

A boy, maybe age 8, was confused about what he needed. He said he needed “chapter books about the human body,” which sounded to me like two things – books about the human body for a school project, and chapter books, meaning junior fiction that is not a picture book, not a series, and not . . . → Read More: wmtc: things i heard at the library: an occasional series: #13

wmtc: youth books, children’s book edition #10, and the best part of my job

I thought readers’ advisory was the best part of my job, but that was before I began running our library’s teen book club.

Once a month, I spend an evening with a group of teens who choose to spend their evening at the library, talking about books. We hang out, eat snacks, talk about books, . . . → Read More: wmtc: youth books, children’s book edition #10, and the best part of my job

wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition # 9: wonderstruck

Over the summer, I wrote about The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick, a children’s book with a suspenseful, convoluted story, lavishly illustrated with Selznick’s beautiful pencil drawings. (I scanned several of those images into my earlier post.)

I’ve just finished Selznick’s most recent book, Wonderstruck. Wonderstruck is filled with drawings in the . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition # 9: wonderstruck

wmtc: my favourite customers and two-way readers’ advisory

The children’s library where I work services a huge age-range of young people and their caregivers, from birth up to around age 12. I enjoy the full range – helping parents understand the importance of reading to their children, helping kids find fun books to read, finding material for school projects and reports – all . . . → Read More: wmtc: my favourite customers and two-way readers’ advisory

wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 8: the invention of hugo cabret

In the aftermath of the flood and with our impending move, when I’m not dealing with those events, all I want to do is read and blog. If you enjoy my “what i’m reading” posts, you’ll be happy. If not…

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I’ve long wanted to read The Invention of Hugo Cabret by . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 8: the invention of hugo cabret

wmtc: the incredible shrinking life: a flood, a hotel room, a library

I’m always amazed how when personal upheaval strikes, whether tragedy or happy Big Life Change – your world shrinks down to a tiny little circle. We moved to Canada the day Hurricane Katrina struck, and days later, we were struggling to take in all we had missed. Since the flood four nights ago, the outside . . . → Read More: wmtc: the incredible shrinking life: a flood, a hotel room, a library

wmtc: simon says, grumpy bird, and an evil witch: summer reading club begins

Summer is the busiest time of year in the Central Children’s Library. Actually, we are wildly busy any time school is out; the summer is just the most sustained period of busy-ness. Many of my colleagues have been preparing for summer programming since the end of March Break.

All through July and August, in . . . → Read More: wmtc: simon says, grumpy bird, and an evil witch: summer reading club begins

wmtc: things i heard at the library: an occasional series: # 9, or why this new librarian found the reference desk a little scary

In this post, I described doing reference as “a bit scary,” and Impudent Strumpet asked why.

I started to write an answer, ran out of time, then found myself on my first real shift at the reference desk!

During my training and orientation weeks, I did two half-shifts at the desk during non-busy hours . . . → Read More: wmtc: things i heard at the library: an occasional series: # 9, or why this new librarian found the reference desk a little scary

wmtc: my life at the children’s library so far (plus happy birthday to me)

What a difference it makes when you enjoy going to work. What a difference when you don’t dread your job. Wow!

This is what I’ve done in my new position so far.

– I participated in the finale of Grade 4 Read To Succeed, in which the winning classes – the classes that read the most books . . . → Read More: wmtc: my life at the children’s library so far (plus happy birthday to me)

wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 7: two by roddy doyle

Roddy Doyle is one of my favourite authors. I read everything he publishes for adults, but I had never read any of his children’s books before. I recently read two of them, and I’m so glad I did.

Wilderness, Roddy Doyle, 2007

In this story, a mother and her two sons set out on winter . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 7: two by roddy doyle

wmtc: children’s books # 6: the return of interspecies love

It’s been a while since I’ve written about children’s books, and an even longer while since I’ve done an interspecies love post, so why not combine the two? There’s a spate of children’s books depicting cross-species animal friendships, some excellent, some better avoided.

Children love these stories for the same reasons we do. There . . . → Read More: wmtc: children’s books # 6: the return of interspecies love

wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 5

In this post, I look at two nonfiction books for young readers. Both are featured in the current “Forest of Reading” program, a province-wide recreational reading program sponsored by the Ontario Library Association. Both fiction and nonfiction winners of the various Forest of Reading awards – Silver Birch, Red Maple, and so on – are . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 5

wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 4

Still Classic?

A Wrinkle in Time, Madeleine L’Engle, 1962

A Wrinkle in Time has always been one of my favourite books. Although I have re-read it a few times over the years, I approached it for this series with some trepidation, a bit concerned that I might no longer recommend it to young readers. I . . . → Read More: wmtc: what i’m reading, children’s books edition: # 4