Okay, maybe this isn’t a big secret, but have you discovered this amazing resource at your local library? She’s called the Children’s Librarian. I’ve yet to meet one I didn’t love. What’s great about my children’s librarian is she anticipates my research needs before I voice them. Just the other day she brought over two new books to my office. “Here you go,” she said. “I know you’re writing a story for Fifth Graders. These might help you.” (FYI, I haven’t read them yet, but they are Pie by Sarah Weeks and Dumpling Days by Grace Lin). How much more amazing are the results when I DO ask a direct question; she won’t rest until she’s scoured the physical and electronic shelves for my answer.
Sometimes I have the privilege of working in the Children’s Room at my library. That’s when I realize how much there is to learn. Did you know there’s a great little series out by ABDO Publishers called “Children’s Authors.” Each book features a modern author, such as the beloved Maurice Sendak, Grace Lin, Kate DiCamillo and the Wimpy Kid’s very own Jeff Kinney? It’s also when I get to SNOOP …sneaking a peak at our most recent additions. One of my favorite newbies was selected as a Must-Read by the Mass Book Awards. Neville by Norton Juster (Phantom Tollbooth), illustrated by G. Brian Karas. This is not your average “child moves to a new neighborhood” kind of book. It’s quirky and funny all wrapped into one.