Guest Blogger: Michaela MacColl, Author of Always Emily (Giveaway)

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Emily and Charlotte Brontë are about as opposite as two sisters can be. Charlotte is practical and cautious; Emily is headstrong and imaginative. But they do have one thing in common: a love of writing. This shared passion will lead them to be two of the first published female novelists and authors of several enduring works of classic literature. But they’re not there yet. First, they have to figure out if there is a connection between a string of local burglaries, rumors that a neighbor’s death may not have been accidental, and the appearance on the moors of a mysterious and handsome stranger. The girls have a lot of knots to untangle—before someone else gets killed.

What’s Up with That Title? by Michaela MacColl

This week my new book Always Emily comes out. It’s the next novel in my series of literary mysteries – this one is about the Bronte sisters.  Charlotte Bronte (who would write Jane Eyre) is 18 and her sister Emily (of Wuthering Heights fame) is 17. The sisters get involved in a mystery on their very own moors – a mystery that threatens their peace of mind, their brother and father and even their lives.

If my story is about two sisters, what’s up with that title? Always Emily? I’ve had lots of  people ask me (especially my husband who gets this book mixed up with my last one about Emily Dickinson).  The truth is this book was originally written in alternating chapters, first Charlotte then Emily. These sisters, despite having an identical upbringing, were completely different from one another.

Charlotte was the eldest sister and she assumed responsibility for the family. She’s the one with the plan – to keep the family solvent, to find employment and to get the sisters published.  Emily, on the other hand, had zero ambitions other than to wander the moors and write her wild, uninhibited poetry and stories. Naturally Charlotte wrote about the repressed and moral Jane Eyre, while Emily penned a gothic melodrama of illicit love and revenge.

Jane Eyrewuthering heights

 

Ultimately I found the alternating narration way too confining. It didn’t seem fair to the reader to leave Charlotte locked in a trunk about to suffocate and then shift to Emily doing the most mundane of chores.  So I switched to a third person, but let each sister own their own chapters.  It worked so much better but I had to answer that pressing question, who is the main character?

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I’m the eldest in my family and I’m the one who likes to plan – so my preference was Charlotte of course. But Emily was so much more fun! And if there’s to be a romance (and in these literary mysteries there is always a hint of some love in the air) Emily seems the more likely candidate. So Emily won out by a hair – Charlotte has adventures, but Emily is the main player.

Charlotte quite reasonably resents her sister’s lack of responsibilities. And how aggravating that Emily is the sister that attracts the masculine attention that Charlotte craved. More than once Charlotte mutters, “Emily, it’s always Emily.”

My editor and I liked this as a title because it sounds so romantic – but really it’s the lament of the plainer, older, duller sister. It’s always Emily!

Thanks for reading. I’d love to have you visit at www.michaelamaccoll.com , or follow me on Twitter at @MichaelaMacColl or check out Author Michaela MacColl on Facebook.

 

Read an excerpt at http://www.scribd.com/doc/198642656/Always-Emily

CCSS-Aligned Discussion/Teacher’s Guide at http://www.chroniclebooks.com/landing-pages/pdfs/AlwaysEmily_DiscussionGuide_FINAL.pdf

Win a signed copy of Always Emily!

Leave a comment, including your email address, for a chance to win an autographed copy of Always Emily by Michaela MacColl!

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

  • By entering, you confirm you are 18 years of age or older and reside in the U.S. or Canada.
  • Giveaway ends 11:59 PM EST on May 1, 2014.
  • Winner will be notified by email and have 72 hours to claim the prize.
  • Prize will be shipped directly to the winner by the author or her representative.
  • This blog is not responsible for items lost or damaged in shipment.
  • Void where prohibited.

 

Coming Soon from Chronicle Books!

Here are three titles I received this week. They are coming in April and May from Chronicle Books.

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When Bryce Billings says he will clobber Fish Finelli in the Captain Kidd Classic boat race, Fish has no choice but to accept the bet. But Fish’s 1970s Whaler with a broken motor is no match for Bryce’s new, top-of-the-line, 9.9-horsepower Viper—even if Fish, Roger, and T. J. can fix their measly 5-horsepower motor, it can’t compete with Bryce’s boat. With $9.63 between them, do the guys even have a chance at the Classic? A hilarious romp, filled with fun facts seamlessly integrated into the story, Fish Finelli informs as much as it entertains for perfect middle-grade reading.

Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Grade Level: 3 – 7
Series: Fish Finelli
Hardcover: 172 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (April 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452110832
ISBN-13: 978-1452110837

Armani Curtis can think about only one thing: her tenth birthday. All her friends are coming to her party, her mama is making a big cake, and she has a good feeling about a certain9781452124568_upside-down-in-the-middle-of-nowhere_large wrapped box. Turning ten is a big deal to Armani. It means she’s older, wiser, more responsible. But when Hurricane Katrina hits the Lower Nines of New Orleans, Armani realizes that being ten means being brave, watching loved ones die, and mustering all her strength to help her family weather the storm. A powerful story of courage and survival, Upside Down in the Middle of Nowhere celebrates the miraculous power of hope and love in the face of the unthinkable.

Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Grade Level: 3 – 7
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (April 8, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452124566
ISBN-13: 978-1452124568

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As befits a future President of the United States of America, Maggie Mayfield has decided to write a memoir of the past year of her life. And what a banner year it’s been! During this period she’s Student of the Month on a regular basis, an official shareholder of Coca-Cola stock, and defending Science Fair champion. Most importantly, though, this is the year Maggie has to pull up her bootstraps (the family motto) and finally learn why her cool-dude dad is in a wheelchair, no matter how scary that is. Author Megan Jean Sovern, herself the daughter of a dad with multiple sclerosis, writes with the funny grace and assured prose of a new literary star.

A portion of the proceeds of the sale of this book will be donated to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Grade Level: 3 – 7
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (May 6, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452110212
ISBN-13: 978-1452110219

Best of Summer 2013 Kid Lit Giveaway Hop

Best of Summer 2013 Kid Lit Giveaway Hop - Button

The Best of Summer 2013 Kid Lit Giveaway Hop is hosted by Mother Daughter Book Reviews and Youth Literature Reviews. Kid lit bloggers, teen lit blogger, authors, and publishers are coming together to share their favorite books of the summer!

The Children’s and Teens’ Book Connection is giving away a hardcover copy of Nobody’s Secret, a novel of intrigue and romance by Michaela MacColl. This is the first book in a MacColl’s new series that imagines great literary figures as teenage crime solvers.

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One day, fifteen-year-old Emily Dickinson meets a mysterious, handsome young man. Surprisingly, he doesn’t seem to know who she or her family is. And even more surprisingly, he playfully refuses to divulge his name. Emily enjoys her secret flirtation with Mr. “Nobody” until he turns up dead in her family’s pond. She’s stricken with guilt. Only Emily can discover who this enigmatic stranger was before he’s condemned to be buried in an anonymous grave. Her investigation takes her deep into town secrets, blossoming romance, and deadly danger. Exquisitely written and meticulously researched, this novel celebrates Emily Dickinson’s intellect and spunk in a page-turner of a book that will excite fans of mystery, romance, and poetry alike.

Enter for your chance to win this book

Leave a comment answering the following statement: “My favorite children’s book is….”

Rules:

  • This giveaway is open to residents of the United States and Canada who are 18 years of age or older.
  • Prize will be shipped to the winner via USPS.
  • Only comments including an email address are eligible to win.
  • Giveaway runs from 12:00 AM EST on August 25, 2013 to 11:59 PM EST on September 6, 2013.
  • Winner will be notified by email. Winner has 72 hours to respond with mailing address before a new winner is selected.
  • The Children’s and Teens’ Book Connection is not responsible for items lost or damaged in shipment.

Good luck!

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Interview with Michaela MacColl, Author of Nobody’s Secret

imagesCAVTYJWPMichaela MacColl studied multidisciplinary history at Vassar College and Yale University, which turns out to be the perfect degree for writing historical fiction. She lives with her husband, two daughters, and three extremely large cats in Connecticut. To learn more about her work, please visit www.michaelamaccoll.com 

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Albany NY.

When did you begin writing?

I began writing about 12 years ago. I was traveling with my young kids in Italy and trying to get them interested in the places we were seeing (with poor results). I started to think about writing historical fiction about particular places. My goals and style evolved – but I still consider setting to be an important “character” in my work.

Do you write during the day, at night or whenever you can sneak a few moments?

I hate this question! I wish I was more disciplined than I am. I basically write to deadlines. I have a wonderful critique group who meet weekly. That’s my impetus most weeks. Of course now I have contracts and deadlines with my publishers. But guilt is usually my driver!

What is this book about?

Nobody’s Secret is a literary mystery starring Emily Dickinson. I started with the premise that Emily might be a brilliant natural detective – she’s a born observer (just read her poems about nature) and she questions authority. She feels passionately about life and knows how to mourn death. I knew that if I gave her something to care about, a mystery to solve and an injustice to right, she would never ever stop.

What inspired you to write it?nobody

It’s based on a poem, “I’m Nobody, Who are You? Are you Nobody too?” It’s one of my favorites of hers. The poem seems to sum up all her frustration with being the daughter of a important person when all she wants is anonymity. When she meets a handsome stranger, who also desires anonymity, they are immediately attracted to each other. Mr. Nobody, as Emily calls him, is just the kind of hero that Emily might fall in love with.

Who is your favorite character from the book?

Well, I loved writing Emily. It’s such a daunting task to try and write a character based on a true person – particularly a brilliant writer like Emily. But once I found a voice for her that I liked, it was easy! On the other hand, I was a little bit in love with Mr. Nobody.

Was the road to publication smooth sailing or a bumpy ride?

When I had the idea to write a literary mystery with Emily Dickinson, I first envisioned a series of books with her as my “detective.” To be honest, I was hoping to cut down on the amount of research I had to do with every book. I pitched the idea to my very very smart editor, Victoria Rock. She responded by suggesting that Emily might not be sustainable as a series – but what did I think of a series of mysteries about different writers, with their own settings, time periods and of course literary style. In other words, four times the research!

I’ve finished the next one already, a novel about the Bronte sisters. And as she usually is, Victoria was right. It was a delight to learn about these writers and immerse myself in their work. Hopefully readers will find the idea as fun as I do.

Do you have a video trailer to promote your book? If yes, where can readers find it?

There is a really fun trailer for Nobody’s Secret. You can find it on my website, www.michaelamaccoll.com.

What is one piece of advice you would like to share with aspiring authors everywhere?

It was a long time between starting to write in 2000 before being published in 2010 (to be fair, I sold the book in late 2008). You have to be stubborn and keep writing. And reading. Consistent writing and reading is the best way to improve your craft.

The Templeton Twins Have An Idea Winner!

 

Sorry I am so late in announcing this. Life has gotten crazy the past couple of months. It’s almost over, though, since the writers conference is Saturday and the Lil Diva’s cheerleading and the Lil Princess’ soccer will be over at the end of the month.

Congratulations goes out to Alice. She won a copy of The Templeton Twins Have an Idea by Ellis Weiner. I’ll email her now.

Thanks to all who participated.

Guest Blogger: Ellis Weiner, Author of The Templeton Twins Have An Idea (GIVEAWAY)

Suppose there were 12-year-old twins, a boy and girl named John and Abigail Templeton. Let’s say John was pragmatic and played the drums, and Abigail was theoretical and solved cryptic crosswords. Now suppose their father was a brilliant, if sometimes confused, inventor. And suppose that another set of twins—adults—named Dean D. Dean and Dan D. Dean, kidnapped the Templeton twins and their ridiculous dog in order to get their father to turn over one of his genius (sort of) inventions. Yes, I said kidnapped. Wouldn’t it be fun to read about that? Oh please. It would so. Luckily for you, this is just the first in a series perfect for boys and girls who are smart, clever, and funny (just like the twins), and enjoy reading adventurous stories (who doesn’t?!).

Hearty Har Har

Do funny books have to have “heart”?  I’m seriously asking.

In entertainment, “heart” is a term of art meaning sentiment, warmth, poignancy, and feeling.  It’s most often used in Hollywood, in script development for television and movies.  “It’s got laughs, but it needs more heart,” is the standard producer’s criticism, based on the assumption that large audiences need to feel something nice in addition to getting laughs.  “We need to care about the hero,” they say, even with regard to the silliest comedies.

In fact, in the arena of big studio movies, you’re not going to get your comedy made without a touching, “redeeming” heart moment at the climax.  No matter how raucous or “wicked” the comedy, the protagonist is going to come to a serious emotional confrontation before it’s all over, either with his/her antagonist or his/her self—even if it’s acted by Will Ferrell playing a completely unself-aware doofus.

There is nothing wrong with this.  It’s not (or, at least, it needn’t be) particularly dishonest, manipulative, or sentimentally phony.  Still, many comedy writers chafe at it, fearing—with cause—that a script heading toward a heart-rich climax will have to pull its comedic punches en route, lest the heart moment seem arbitrary and unearned.

Television provides a little more leeway; you can, and actually have to, provide less heart per episode.  A season of thirteen weekly emotional climaxes can, especially to a modern audience more emotionally sophisticated than ever, seem labored and forced.  Famously, when Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld were creating Seinfeld, David’s controlling aesthetic was: “No hugging, no learning.”  “No heart” was implicit.

But the above examples deal with adult (and teenage) entertainment.  What about books for younger people—for, say, children ages 9-13?  I have no idea whether a climax characterized by heart is necessary or not.

In The Templeton Twins Have an Idea, the climax of the action occurs when the bad guy is (literally) shot down and, with the other bad guy, flees in disgrace.  But the story itself has one more turn, which by any reckoning can be called a “heart” moment.  It deals with the twins realizing why their father felt it necessary to move to a new place.

I wrote that section because it felt like a legitimate aspect of an “origin story,” the first in a series.  And one or two reviewers praised it as “touching.”  I liked that.

But constitutionally, I don’t like heart—or, rather, I don’t mind reading it, but it doesn’t come naturally to me, the way parody and exaggeration does.  So recently, when I wrote the second in the series, I assumed I had to include a heart-ish moment at the end, and did so more out of a sense of obligation than anything else.

The funny part, though, was that, either because I was merely being dutiful (i.e., my heart wasn’t in it), or the story simply didn’t sustain it, my editor asked that it be cut.  As I recall, her hand-written comment about the scene was, “MEH.”  I was quite happy to agree.  What remains is a small exchange between the twins and their father, in which he praises them for doing something nice for a friend.

As heart moments go, it’s a small one.  In fact it barely qualifies.  In any case, I’m not so sure kids need a “touching” moment to help them “care” about the protagonist.  Once they commit to reading a story, they care plenty.  I’ll be interested to hear how readers react to the happy, but relatively heartless, conclusion of the second book.

Visit http://www.scribd.com/doc/94086414/The-Templeton-Twins to read a chapter excerpt from The Templeton Twins Have An Idea.

Stop by and pester the Narrator at http://templetontwins.tumblr.com/

WIN AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY THE TEMPLETON TWINS HAVE AN IDEA!

Simply leave a comment that answers the following question: “Do funny books needs to have a ‘heart’?”.

Please remember to add your email address to your comment, so we can contact you if you win. Contest is open to those 18 years of age or older residing in the United States and Canada. Winner will have 72 hours to respond with a shipping address before a new winner is selected. Prize will be sent directly to the winner from the publisher or its representative. This blog is not responsible for products lost or damaged in shipment. Contest ends at 11:59 PM EST on Sunday, September 30th.

Visit Book Dreaming today at http://shannonkodonnell.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-templeton-twins-blog-tour-giveaway.html for another chance to win a copy of The Templeton Twins Have An Idea!

Be sure to tag #TheTTNarrator and/or @ChronicleKids when you Tweet about The Templeton Twins!

Interview with Kelly Milner Halls, Editor of Girl Meets Boy

Kelly Milner Halls is the author of Albino Animals and Tales of the Cryptids, both YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers. Her writing has appeared in a variety of publications including Booklist, BookPage,Teen Reads, the Denver Post, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Washington Post, and many others. She lives in Spokane, Washington.

When did you first get bit by the writing bug?

Like so many writers, I had a teacher in the 3rd grade that planted the writing seed. But it was really my experience with the high school newspaper that helped that seed take root. I didn’t have to be the shy girl trying to find the courage to talk about myself as a reporter. I could ask questions about other people, and, to my astonishment, they wanted to answer. It was life changing.

Why did you decide to write stories for the YA market?

I have been a professional writer for twenty years now, but I discovered YA as the first executive editor at KidsReads (part of the Book Report Network) in the late 1990s. YA literature was under the KidsReads banner, at the time, and I fell in love with the fast paced, power of the genre. The chance to create GIRL MEETS BOY combined what I’d learned by interviewing the best of the best YA authors with a concept I found intriguing – why do two people sometimes see the same event so differently?

What is your favorite part of writing for this group? What is the greatest challenge?

My favorite part of writing for YA readers is the chance to tell true stories through fiction. That thread of authenticity is what makes YA so powerful, so moving. It’s also the greatest challenge, because if you tell your truth, it will collide with the truths of others. Those others often object with ferocity. But courage is important. If writers write their best stories, they provide their readers with emotional back up and help pass that courage on.

Can you tell us what your latest book is all about?

GIRL MEETS BOY is a collection of story pairs. One writer tells a story from the boy’s POV. The second writer tells the same story from the girl’s POV. Same turn of events, very unique perspectives. What he saw is not always the same as what she saw.

What inspired you to write it?

Many years ago, my daughter broke up with her long term boyfriend after they saw the same event very differently. To my daughter, she watched a video with a friend. To her boyfriend, she cheated on him. I was struck by the gap in understanding, and wondered what great YA writers might do with that kind of intellectual challenge? I approached authors I’d written about and admired for years, and they agreed to write the stories, no holds barred. They were brave and honest and I think they created remarkable literature that helps us understand how two people could see one thing so differently. I’m so grateful to Chronicle Books for bringing the collection to life.

Where can readers purchase a copy?

The book is available from any bricks and mortar or online bookseller.

Do you have a website and/or blog where readers can find out more?
You can find out more about the book at www.kellymilnerhalls-ya.com or at the Chronicle Books website at http://www.chroniclebooks.com/titles/kids-teens/subject/growing-up/girl-meets-boy.html

What is up next for you?

I am working on my first YA novel, a second anthology and several nonfiction projects, including a book on the history of video games, a look at tattoos through human history, and a book on surprising artistic masterpieces. My travel schedule picks up steam in February — I’m visiting 21 schools in February alone — so I stay pretty busy.

Do you have anything else to add?

Just thank you for including GIRL MEETS BOY on your blog. I’d love to hear what you think of it.

View the Girl Meets Boy trailer at http://budurl.com/girlboytrailer

Promise the Night by Michaela MacColl Giveaway Winner

Congratulations go out to Apple Blossom, who picked up a free hardcover of Promise the Night by Michaela MacColl. I’ll contact the winner by email now. She’ll have 72 hours to respond with mailing information before I select a new winner.

Thanks to all who participated in our giveaway.

Giveaway and Interview with Michaela MacColl, Author of Promise the Night

Michaela MacColl studied multi-diciplinary history at Vassar College and Yale University. She lives with her husband and two daughters in Connecticut. You can visit her online at www.michaelamaccoll.com. (Photo from author’s website)

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in upstate NY.

When did you begin writing?

I wrote a little in high school but detoured into history in college. After graduate school I ended up writing legal briefs for an insurance company and then technical manuals. Finally I decided it would be nice to write something that someone actually wanted to read!

Do you write during the day, at night or whenever you can sneak a few moments?

I don’t really have much of a routine. I have two kids and four cats and lots of obligations. My schedule tends to be determined by deadlines. I work with a wonderful critique group and we meet every week. So by Thursday I need a new chapter or a solid revision. I tend to think about what I’m going to write all week and then sit down and write 10 -12 pp in one sitting.

What is this book about?

Beryl Markham was a pilot in the 1930’s. She was beautiful and fearless. She made world headlines when she attempted to fly the Atlantic solo from East to West. She wrote her own story in a very fine memoir called West with the Night. For me, the most interesting part of her story was her childhood in Africa. Her father was one of the first colonists in the highlands above Nairobi. Beryl’s mother abandoned them and Beryl was raised by the tribe who worked for her father. She was the ultimate “wild child” who rode wild horses, hunted lions and warthogs and even learned to jump higher than her head. Promise the Night tells the story of how she learned to be so confident. Between each of the chapters of her childhood I have interspersed stories of the adult Beryl learns to fly and her historic flight. It’s really fun!

What inspired you to write it?

My mother got her pilot’s license when I was in college. I gave her West with the Night to celebrate. A few years ago I was casting about for a new project and Mom suggested Beryl. Originally I was trying to write a biography for kids but I was so much more interested in her stories!

Who is your favorite character from the book?

It would have to be Beryl herself. She’s so brave and so aggravating! But no matter how many bridges she burns, she manages to find stalwart friends who love her as much as I do.

Was the road to publication smooth sailing or a bumpy ride?

I wrote Promise the Night before I wrote my first published novel, Prisoners in the Palace. My agent shopped it to a few publishers but they all had the same problem. My main character, Beryl, was unlikable. Also they weren’t sure that there was a market for a relatively unknown historical figure. So I rewrote it to make Beryl a little younger at the beginning – less competent and more vulnerable. And I added the pilot elements (before it was an epilogue). Chronicle Books read it and loved it. When they bought my first novel, we made it a two book deal.

What is up next for you?

My next book is a mystery involving Emily Dickinson. Can she solve the murder of Mr. Nobody? It comes out in Spring 2013 and is part of a series that will place other young authors in mysterious situations.

Interviewer’s Note: You can read an excerpt from Promise the Night at http://www.scribd.com/doc/65218020/Promise-the-Night.

I have a copy of Prisoners in the Palace here that I can’t wait to read. I’m hoping to catch up with reviews before too long.

How would you like to win a copy of Promise the Night? Here are the details:

1) Contest is open to residents of the United States and Canada only.

2) Leave a comment including your email address so we can contact you if you win. Any comment without an email address will not be counted.

3) BONUS: LIKE this blog post and leave a comment with your FB name. +1

4) BONUS: Tweet this giveaway. Can be done once a day. Leave a comment with Twitter status. +1

5) Each comment must be posted separately.

6) Contest ends at 11:59 PM EST on Sunday, February 5, 2012. Winner will be contacted by email. The winner will have 72 hours to respond with mailing information before a new winner is selected. Prize will be mailed via USPS. TC&TBC is not responsible for lost or damaged goods.

Top 10 Picture Books of 2011

This took longer than expected. As I mentioned in my last post, selections this year were hard. In addition, I discovered I needed to segregate picture books for little kids (babies, toddlers, preschoolers) from those for school-age children. While some books could overlap between the two age groups, there was no way for me to compile a fair list if I lumped them all into one group. For books where I couldn’t find an age listing, I put them where I felt they fit best. I’ll start off with my Top 10 for the youngest category and then list the Top 10 in the older category.

Top 10 Picture Books for Preschoolers and under

  • Ricky’s Christmas Tree by Guido van Genechten
  • A Cat’s Alphabet Book by Sally O. Lee
  • My Daddy by Guido van Genechten
  • Going to the Beach with Lily and Milo and Going to the Zoo with Lily and Milo by Pauline Oud (I reviewed these together, so I am counting them as one.)
  • One Little Blueberry by Tammi Salzano
  • Oops! by Leo Timmers
  • 1-2-3- Count with Me and A is for Apple by Georgie Burkett (Again, I reviewed these together and count them as one.)
  • Ricky is Brave by Guido van Genechten
  • Thankyouplease by Pierre Winters and Barbara Ortelli
  • Ian’s New Potty by Pauline Oud

There are repeat names on this list, but I felt these authors and publishers truly knew how to create books attractive to this market.

Top 10 Books of 2011 for Ages 3 and up

  • A Dog is A Dog by Stephen Shaskan
  • My Mom Has X-Ray Vision by Angela McAllister
  • Will & Kate: A Love Story by Ink Robin
  • Sea Monster’s First Day by Kate Messner
  • The Butt Book by Artie Bennett
  • Not Fat Because I Wanna Be by LaNiyah Bailey
  • The Dancing Clock by Steve Metzger
  • Humbug, A Christmas Carol by Lee Baker
  • My Name is Not Alexander by Jennifer Fosberry
  • Fifo “50 States” by Hayley Rose

Honorable Mentions

  • A Christmas Secret by Candace Hall
  • Frederico, The Mouse Violinist by Mayra Calvani
  • The Ice Cream King by Steve Metzger
  • Marta’s Gargantuan Wings by J. Aday Kennedy
  • Every-Day Dress-Up by Selina Alko
  • Freckleface Strawberry Best Friends Forever by Julianne Moore
  • Limelight Larry by Leigh Hodgkinson
  • Don’t Worry Douglas! by David Melling
  • Cinderfella and the Furry Godmother by Dixie Phillips
  • Tumbleweed Christmas by Beverly Stowe McClure
  • Secret Service Saint by Janet Ann Collins
  • Seven Miles to Freedom by Janet Halfmann