Cece Bell and the Superhero Power of Stories

Posted by on June 21, 2016.

Last Wednesday evening, I stood outside Montpelier High School and greeted young readers and their adults as they arrived at the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award Ceremony. Kids and their adults piled into the auditorium to hear Cece Bell speak about her award-winning book El Deafo.

Why Writing Matters

Posted by on October 18, 2015.

When I was in elementary school, I decided that I would be an author when I grew up. Naturally I was thrilled when my fourth grade teacher announced that a real writer was going to be visiting our class. A real writer!

Middle Ground: The Diverse, Delightful 2015 Newbery Honorees

Posted by on February 5, 2015.

2015 Newbery Medalist and Honorees

This weekend, while many people placed bets on the Super Bowl, I jotted down my predictions for the Newbery Award, one of the most celebrated and notable awards in children’s literature. Every year I make my guesses, and I am almost always surprised.

Middle Ground: Why Are Middle-Grade Books So Sad?

Posted by on January 6, 2015.

Girl reading a sad book

I recently recommended a book to Mary (not her real name), a twelve year-old girl who regularly comes to the library. Mary and I talk about books a lot, and she’s always seemed to like the books I’ve suggested. On this particular visit, I encouraged her to read what I thought was a pretty hilarious book.