Author Archives: CBethM

April 05

Names by Connie Wanek

Once there was a child of six. No, seven. She had just had a birthday, and it was better, being seven. She was already thinking about what eight would be like. She loved all animals, and her father had brought home a blue birthday parakeet for her. It had no name yet. She like to […]

March 29

On Theater Vs. Book Nerds by Janet Key

Even before I was a loud-and-proud, card-carrying book nerd, I was an all-out, full-tilt-boogie theater nerd. The thing about being a book nerd is it kind of depends on being able to read, which might take a few years of life to figure out. But a theater nerd? We’re born whenever the lights drop and […]

March 24

In the Generation After the Butterflies by Julian Randall

I’ve only seen my mother cry a handful of times. I want to tell you a story about the first time I realized that she could. My mother was sitting in a room downstairs of the house we lived in on Talman ave, in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago. I walked in and saw, […]

March 22

The Lost Things Club by J.S. Puller

When it came to writing THE LOST THINGS CLUB, I did a lot of the work backwards.  Many authors tell you that when they get an idea for a book, they go on to do a lot of research about the setting, events, or history before sitting down to write.  It’s logical and it’s how […]

March 19

Let’s Have a Few Words by Jennifer Ziegler

Hello, readers. I join you here today with a confession: I, Jennifer Ziegler, am a ginormous word nerd. And my new middle grade novel, Worser, is a love letter to words and the people like me who adore them. The book’s main character, Worser, shares this aspect with me. He and I both have favorite […]

March 12

TOP TEN GRAPHIC NONFICTION BOOKS FOR KIDS by Sally Engelfried

Graphic nonfiction can present an interesting conundrum to librarians, as we tend to like our nonfiction meticulously cited, with no dialog unless it’s a primary source. Yet most graphic nonfiction is full of dialog, as dictated by its form! What I suggest to students is that they view graphic nonfiction as a jumping off point […]

March 04

Changing Landscapes and Shifting Friendships by A. J. Sass

I remember the moment things started to change between my best friend and me. I was just a couple of years younger than Ellen, the eponymous character in my novel, Ellen Outside the Lines, and my friend and I were at school, eating lunch. Together, we studied a poster advertising the upcoming talent show taped […]

March 02

A Conversation with Amy Ludwig VanDerwater and Emma Virján about IF THIS BIRD HAD POCKETS

An ideal gift for children who love animals, IF THIS BIRD HAD POCKETS A Poem in Your Pocket Day Celebration (Wordsong), written by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater and illustrated by Emma Virján, is a charmingly illustrated collection of playful poems about 19 different creatures. Featuring fascinating information about the animals (yes, sea otters have pockets!) tucked […]

March 01

Time-Traveling with Clara Barton and Illustrator Christopher Cyr

How does an illustrator accurately depict a figure from our long-ago past? Here, illustrator Christopher Cyr explains how he created the illustrations for TO THE FRONT: Clara Barton Braves the Battle of Antietam, a powerful tribute to Civil War nurse Clara Barton and her heroic efforts during the Battle of Antietam. The book reveals how […]

February 16

A Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow – Review by Kacy Smith Paterson

A Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow Tor Teen, 2020 288 pages, Grades 8 and Up Bethany C. Morrow writes in multiple genres for both adult and young adult audiences She weaves speculative fiction, magical realism, and social justice into her 2020 release, A Song Below Water, a story of black magical teenagers in […]