#WorldKidLitWednesday: Maresi: Red Mantle

An epistolary novel. A beautiful story with a strong female protagonist. The stand-alone conclusion to a trilogy. Maresi: Red Mantle by Maria Turtschaninoff is all of these. It’s also the co-winner of the 2020 GLLI Translated YA Book Prize—and deservedly so, as it’s a fabulous read. Set in an agrarian, mostly pre-literate, fantasy world, Red … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Maresi: Red Mantle

#WorldKidLitWednesday: The Casket of Time

What if you could stop time? Would it work? Would it even be a good idea? That is the core dilemma in The Casket of Time, an intricately plotted, carefully wrought, and beautifully translated book for YA readers by Icelandic author, poet and former presidential candidate Andri Snær Magnason. Made up of two interwoven stories … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: The Casket of Time

#WorldKidLit Month 2020: Trailblazing Puerto Rican Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré

Photograph of Pura Belpré Avid picture book readers, close followers of the children's publishing industry, and librarians may very well be familiar with the Pura Belpré Medal, given annually to Latinx illustrators and writers whose book "best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience." However, how much do we about the trailblazing librarian and storyteller … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Month 2020: Trailblazing Puerto Rican Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Bear and Fred: A World War II Story

“Many years ago,in a faraway land called Holland, in a city named Delft, I was Fred’s teddy bear. I never had a name. Fred never gave me one. I lived in his bedroom with other toys. I was a happy bear. Little Fred loved me more than any other toy. He took me everywhere he … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Bear and Fred: A World War II Story

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Do Fish Sleep?

Originally an award-winning play for children, Do Fish Sleep? is a heartbreakingly matter-of-fact look at death for middle grade readers from the perspective of Jette, a 10-year-old whose little brother, Emil, dies during the course of the book. Unsurprisingly, she and Emil are both puzzled about what happens to people after they die—animals, too. When … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Do Fish Sleep?

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Witch Hat Atelier, v. 1

What if the thing you most yearned to do was an innate ability? And you weren’t one of the lucky ones born with it? That’s the set up for Witch Hat Atelier, a wonderful YA coming-of-age manga series by Kamome Shirahama, translated by Stephen Kohler, the first volume of which just won an Eisner Award for the … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Witch Hat Atelier, v. 1

Awards – recognition and publicity

New Zealand has a number of Book Awards run by different organizations. It is a great way for me as an ex-pat to keep up to date with the best of New Zealand writing. Awards can be arbitrary and follow the whimsy of the awards panel but overall what they offer all of us is … Continue reading Awards – recognition and publicity

#WorldKidLitWednesday: My Beijing: Four Stories of Everyday Wonder

My Beijing: Four Stories of Everyday Wonder is a charming, whimsical graphic novel for readers ages 7-11. Illustrated with beautiful watercolors, the book consists of four heartwarming tales about a young disabled girl named Yu’er and her beloved, quirky grandfather by renowned Chinese author-illustrator, Nie Jun. My Beijing introduces English readers to Nie’s East-meets-West art and … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: My Beijing: Four Stories of Everyday Wonder

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Three picture books by Torben Kuhlmann: “Lindbergh,” “Armstrong” and “Edison”

I’ve always had a soft spot for mice. Not the computer kind, nor the kind that were supposed to make Victorian women shriek and fall into a dead faint. (Probably because their corsets were too tight….but I digress.) No, the cute, cotton, and cuddly kind. So I fell hard for Torben Kuhlmann’s imaginative historical fiction … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Three picture books by Torben Kuhlmann: “Lindbergh,” “Armstrong” and “Edison”

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Cry, Heart, But Never Break

What if Death liked his coffee "black and strong?" And left his scythe outside the door, so as not to scare the young ones? That's who Death is in Cry, Heart, But Never Break, originally written in Danish by award-winning children's author Glenn Ringtved, with wistful, pencil-and-watercolor illustrations by Charlotte Pardi. In this gentle, moving … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Cry, Heart, But Never Break