I served as a Cybils Awards round one judge for the second time this year! In 2018 I served on the Easy Reader/Early Chapter Book committee and this year I served on the Elementary/Middle Grade Speculative Fiction committee. It turns out middle grade novels are WAY LONGER than easy readers! Of course, I knew that going in! It was a pleasure to work with amazing bloggers putting together a list of books we all loved! Check it out:
It was about a month after I attended the Children’s Literature Association’s 2018 conference and I wanted to share my research about queer children’s picture books with a larger audience. At the conference I met with an editor from the University Press of Mississippi who was interested in publishing my work. I’ve since signed a contract with Mississippi and my book about queer children’s picture books should be out Spring 2021. As excited as I was, and am, to publish academic work, it’s also very important to me that I have an audience outside academia. I want this audience to include parents, educators, librarians, and of course, queer kids, who need the books I research and review! I’ve since reviewed over 100 queer children’s books all of which can be found on my blog under “Snapshots of LGBTQ Kid Lit.” Continue reading →
Written by Anika Aldamuy Denise and illustrated by Paola Escobar, Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Story Teller Pura Belpré (2019), is an exceptional biography of New York City’s first Puerto Rican librarian. In addition to accessibly and inventively capturing Pura’s story, the book provides a window into US history. It is also a timely tale of Arts-based activism that speaks to ongoing struggles to secure equal access to cultural representation. Continue reading →
A Princess of Great Daring (2015), written by Tobi Hill-Meyer and illustrated by Elenore Toczynski, is about a transgender girl named Jamie and her friends.
Jamie has not seen her friends all summer and plans on telling them about her gender identity. Her two moms drop her off at her friend’s house as all of her buddies are starting to play a game. They will be princes and will save a princess form distress. Jamie says she would like to be a princess and the boys are excited to have someone to rescue, but she interrupts the traditional narrative declaring that she will be “a princess of great daring.” Concerned that they will have no one to rescue, one of the boys, Liam, volunteers to be captured by a dragon. Continue reading →