Young Adult Goes to Broadway

The classic Young Adult novel Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit has been made into a Broadway musical which follows the trend of producing shows based on other young adult novels such as The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, Aladdin, and Matilda.

The success of these other shows has prompted producers to put on shows that inspire the magical feeling that these shows do and to bring a sense of nostalgia that will also appeal to adults.

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So perhaps if you are thinking of going to see Tuck Everlasting, you may want to first go back and re-read the book to remember the reasons that make it such a magical story in the first place.

Authors’ Guild loses case against Google

The Supreme Court recently declined to hear the case Authors’ Guild v.Google, regarding the lower courts decision that Google Books is within the fair use doctrine of copyright law in its scanning of out of print books for online use. This decision ends ten years of litigation since the lawsuit was first filed in 2005. The authors represented have argued that they are due remuneration for the works used by Google, but the courts have not found that to be necessary. The decision was not unexpected, as several appellate courts have already upheld the original decision. More information can be found in this NY Times article.

Calling all fourth graders

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If you are planning a vacation this summer with a fourth grader in tow, you may be able to access a National Park free with your child. Thanks to a link from the Utica Public Library’s Facebook page, I discovered that the National Park Service is turning 100 years old this year, and is offering a free pass for current fourth graders and their families to enter National Park sites for free. The program “Every Kid in a Park” began last September, and runs until August 30th of 2016. After a fun online activity, the pass can be printed out and will admit children under 16 in the household and up to 3 adults. Of course it does say that not all the sites found will accept the pass, and to call first to find out. But there are many options, and more information is available here. Check out your area libraries’ facebook pages, too, you never know what you might discover…

Amazon goes to School

According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon just signed a contract with the country’s largest school district: New York City. Worth over $30 million, the e-book contract will range over three years with the possibility of a 2 year extension. Serving over one million students, Amazon will be the supplier of e-textbooks and e-books starting this coming school year. The contract does not include devices or kindles. Schools will buy the digital titles and provide them to students. The books will be uploadable on devices, phones and computers. If the contract extends even further it can net Amazon over $60 million dollars. Amazon is hoping this will buy them entry into the college population as well.

“The Night Gardener”

When the reader first meets William, he seems sad and lonely.  He lives at the Grimloch Orphange on Grimloch Lane.  His world, as pictured by the illustrator Eric Fan, is gray and colorless.  But then something happens that excites William and the other inhabitants of this street.  Huge, intricate topiary begin to appear by magic.  Trees begin to turn into wonderful animals.  An owl, a cat, a rabbit, a parakeet, an elephant all crafted by the magical night gardener begin to attract huge crowds.  Gradually drab Grimloch Lane is transformed in a colorful world.

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One night as William is headed home he sees a stranger.  Wondering if this man is the night gardener, William follows him.  Of course, the man is the night gardener.  He asks William for his help and the two work together into the night.  The gardener leaves William a gift–his own pair of shears.  As the seasons change, the topiary eventually disappear, but the people of the the town will never be the same, nor will William.

Written by Terry Fan with illustrations done in pencil and colored digitally by his brother, “The Night Gardener” is a magical story.  Perfect for readers ages 4-8, children will enjoy the story of a boy and a town that are both transformed by beauty.