Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The Johnny Depp edition of Dahl’s famous title will be presented this Saturday as part of the Film Forum jr. for kids in New York City at 11 AM. Upcoming films in the series also include King and the Mockingbird from 1980 based on a Hans Christian Andersen tale, I Was Born But… (1932), and It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. A fun way to spend Saturday morning.


Robert Hoge has written a matter-of-fact biography about his childhood years. He came into the world in 1972, with a large tumor in the middle of his face, which pushed his eyes far apart, and short, twisted legs. His mother, who had four children already, wanted nothing to do with him for the first month of his life. Robert underwent many operations as a baby and young child, which removed the tumor and re-built his face and legs. Despite all the obstacles he faced, he accepted his fate and soldiered on. Then, at 14, Robert’s parents gave him the power to decide whether or not to have the final operation, which would substantially change his face, hopefully for the better. But Robert decided that the possibility of losing his eyesight wasn’t worth the risk, and declined the operation. My ten year old grandson is reading this as a school assignment, and I found it very uplifting.

Projectr: Free Streaming

Anyone with an NYPL library card now has access to the streaming service, Projectr. NYPL recently partnered with the service available for instant viewing. Any resident of NY state is eligible for an NYPL card which is easily obtained online (click here) in a few easy steps. Projectr has thousands of movies, documentaries and shorts. Give it a try!

Where Are the Children Now?

This new novel is the sequel to Where Are the Children?, which was released in 1975 by Mary Higgins Clark. I don’t recall reading the original, so I checked back and there are only 16 copies still in the system. That title chronicled the kidnapping of Nancy Eldridge’s two children, Michael and Melissa. The current sequel deals with the adult Melissa’s new marriage to Charlie Miller. Initially they are very happy together, but the marriage soon becomes a nightmare when Charlie’s three year- old daughter Riley goes missing on Melissa’s watch. Is this a repeat of Melissa’s abduction as a young child? But the evidence points to Melissa as being the kidnapper now, with the police convinced that she is guilty. Can Melissa find Riley and prove her innocence before it is too late? It’s a quick read, and enjoyable. Definitely less creepy that the original title, which I will pass on reading…

Kwame on Disney channel

Author Kwame Alexander’s popular Newbery title, The Crossover, is now on the Disney channel. Eight episodes are planned for season one. Produced by Lebron James, The Crossover follows the Bell brothers, family and friends. As a novel-in-verse, grpahic novel and now TV series, we are closely wacthing Alexander to see what he does next. He is starting a book tour next week to promote his new title, Why Fathers Cry at Night: a Memoir.