Author Archive

Kate Greenaway & CILIP Medals

June 27, 2019

The winners of these British children’s books awards were announced last week.

The Poet X (older readers) and The Lost Words (younger readers) won this year.

The 2019 CILIP Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Medals shortlists

CILIP Carnegie Medal:

1. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo (Electric Monkey)

2. Rebound by Kwame Alexander, illustrated by Dawud Anyabwile (Andersen Press)

3. The House with Chicken Legs by Sophie Anderson  (Usborne Books)

4. Bone Talk by Candy Gourlay (David Fickling Books)

5. A Skinful of Shadows by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan Children’s Books)

6. Things A Bright Girl Can Do by Sally Nicholls (Andersen Press)

7. Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds, illustrated by Chris Priestley (Faber & Faber)

8. The Land of Neverendings by Kate Saunders (Faber & Faber)

CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal:

1. The Day War Came by Nicola Davies, illustrated by Rebecca Cobb (Walker Books)

2. Ocean Meets Sky written and illustrated by Eric and Terry Fan (Lincoln Children’s)

3. Beyond the Fence written and illustrated by Maria Gulemetova (Child’s Play Library)

4. The Wolf, the Duck and the Mouse by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen (Walker)

5. Julian is a Mermaid written and illustrated by Jessica Love (Walker Books)

6. You’re Safe With Me by Chitra Soundar, illustrated by Poonam Mistry (Lantana)

7The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane, illustrated by Jackie Morris (Hamish Hamilton)

8. Suffragette: The Battle for Equality written and illustrated by David Roberts (Two Hoots)

The Mother-in-Law

June 20, 2019

The Mother-in-Law  A family drama set in Australia, “The Mother-in-Law” begins with the death of Diana Goodwin.  Lucy Goodwin married into the family and has never been close to her mother-in-law.  A cold, distant woman, Lucy hasn’t been able to figure out why Diana doesn’t like her.  The police claim her death appears to be a suicide, but Lucy’s husband, Ollie (Diana’s son) can’t find a reason she would make such a decision.  As each chapter unfolds, we learn about Diana’s tough teenage years that carved her tough exterior.  We learn about her troubled daughter, Nettie, who is growing more and more unhappy when she doesn’t get pregnant. We learn about the financial predicament of Ollie when Diana’s will brings more unexpected news.  Lucy is a likable character confused by the events following Diana’s death and struggling to be a mother to her three children as her family is blindsided by Diana’s sudden death.

Death in Provence

June 13, 2019

If you like an atmospheric, cozy mystery then try “Death in Provence.” 50-something Penelope Kite has relocated to Provence, France from England following a divorce. Impulsively buying a run-down home delivers a dead body in the swimming pool on her first day. Having retired from the British Home Office, Penny has some experience solving crimes and does not make herself welcome when she decides to do some crime solving on her own. Death in Provence: A Novel (Penelope Kite Book 1) by [Kent, Serena]   Once she finally manages to get her electricity and water up and running, Penny begins to get to know the locals.  Her estate agent proves to be both a help and nuisance as she shows up unexpectedly at odd times.  Will Penny ever get to relax and enjoy her glass of rose at sunset without dead bodies turning up on her property? Pick up this mystery and find out.

Before the Food Network there was Maida

June 8, 2019

Before America’s Top Chef and other reality cooking shows, Maida Heatter was the queen of baking, desserts and chocolate recipes. Her first cookbook, “Maida Heater’s Book of Great Desserts” was published in 1974. Other Heatter titles include “Maida Heatter’s  Pies and Tarts,” “Maida Heatter’s Cookies,” “Maida Heatter’s Great Book of Chocolate Desserts,” and “Maida Heatter’s Cakes.”  Her cookbooks serve as reference books to the classic desserts.  She wrote recipes for the New York Times as well.  She died June 6th in Florida at age 102. Her title, “Happiness is Baking: Cakes, Pies, Tarts, Muffins, Brownies, Cookies: Favorite Desserts from the Queen of Cake” was just released in April. Maida recommended baking to relieve stress so go bake something delicious today!

Happiness Is Baking: Cakes, Pies, Tarts, Muffins, Brownies, Cookies: Favorite Desserts from the Queen of Cake

Girl he Used to Know

May 30, 2019

The Girl He Used to Know: A Novel    This new novel follows Annika Rose, a young woman who stands apart from the crowd.  The story is divided into two time periods: when Annika is first in college in Chicago in 1991 and the “current day” of 2001.  When we meet Annika in college we see she is a high-functioning possibly-on-the-spectrum attractive young student who just manages to get by in the world.  Annika runs in to her college boyfriend, Jonathan in 2001 after ten years of being apart. He is newly separated from his wife and we aren’t sure how happy he is to see Annika.  Why did they break up in the first place ten years ago?  Annika is now a librarian and single. She sees a therapist.  In the chapters told from Jonathan’s point of view, we see he has moved on from his college relationship, but may still have feelings for Annika.  Janice, Annika’s college roommate and friend, has guided Annika over the years to help her navigate the world.  Annika is a quirky, caring, and somewhat naive woman who doesn’t process social cues, but yet sees the world much brighter than most of us do.  I enjoyed watching how she lived in the world and managed to maintain relationships.

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