August 2006 Archives

Commas Etc

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The Observer | Review | Love of the comma people

Review of the children's version of Lynne Truss's bestseeler Eats, Shoots & Leaves: Whyt Commas Really Do Make A Difference

Unofficial Leak

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Oxford Universtiy Press have just issued a Press Release stating that they are investigating how details of the shortly-to-be-published Peter Pan sequel (by Geraldine McCaughrean) were leaked to the New York Times.

The Press Release, for those who are intereted, can be read in full below...

Gary Paulsen

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The real-life and literary adventures of the author Gary Paulsen - New York Times

Highly Recommended Gary Paulsen feature in the New York Times!

Superb Stylist

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Yesterday's entry from L. Lee Lowe's blog:

One of the pleasures of blogging: to be able to ignore all of the books everyone's talking about, precisely because everyone else is already talking about them, books which hardly need my voice added to the chorus - or outcry. Instead, I want to devote at least some of my time to less-known fiction, which though it may not be the work of genius, is well worth a readership. And needs a little guidance lest its trajectory land it in the out-of-print zone.

Here's Charles Butler, senior lecturer at the University of the West of England, who teaches both children's and Renaissance literature (and holds a postgraduate degree in computer science - a man after my own heart, for I love those fiction writers with a strong interest or background in science/technology/mathematics). He's written both dauntingly fine academic works (Four British Fantasists is his most recent) and wonderful children's and YA fantasy books.

Death of a Ghost is Butler's latest YA novel. His body of fiction fits well into the tradition he himself has studied so extensively, the fantasists of whom Alan Garner was undoubtedly the most influential of his generation. Like Garner, Butler draws on myth in his fiction; like Garner, he examines the nature of time; and like Garner, he is a superb stylist.

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

The Monstrous Memoirs Of A Mighty McFearless by Ahmet Zappa

Ahmet Zappa is Frank Zappa�s son and this book shows signs of the celebrity fast-track to publication: the prose (made-up names aside) is ordinary and the author�s marginal doodles of monsters unskilled. And yet it has something. What it lacks in writerliness it partly makes up for in sincerity. NICOLETTE JONES

Michelle Paver Feature

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No more Mr Big Bad! - Books - Times Online

Feature interview with Michelle Paver in The Times (Amanda Craig)

Count On Mum

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Your say - Books - Times Online

From the 'Your Say' section in today's Times:

I was interested to read the review of The White Giraffe by Lauren St John, in particular Amanda Craig�s comment that it had been a long time since a children�s author dared to write about Africa. In April this year Anderson Press published Sophie and the Albino Camel, by Stephen Davies. I am biased as I am his mother but The Times Educational Supplement of July 20 did describe it as �an exceptional short novel�.

The TES review, by me, was actually published on 23rd June.

Mark Haddon Feature

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Independent Online Edition > Features

Recommended feature interview with Mark Haddon in The Independent:

His website lists 16 children's books he has written (and mostly illustrated), starting with Gilbert's Gobstopper in 1987 and including Agent Z and the Penguin from Mars and the Baby Dinosaur series of boardbooks.

Haddon is possibly the only person to win the Commonwealth Writers Prize for best first book with his 17th book.

Leaf Men Animation

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Animation Magazine | Fox Falls for Joyce�s Leaf Men

Having tapped children�s author William Joyce to help design and produce its last feature, Robots, 20th Century Fox Animation will again collaborate with the Rolie Polie Olie creator on a feature toon. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ice Age and Robots director Chris Wedge will direct a big-screen adaptation of Joyce�s kids� book, The Leaf Men and the Brave Good Bugs.

Inkheart Casting

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Fraser in Inkheart - Cinematical

Filed by Martha Fischer on Cinematical:

I feel old: Brendan Fraser (that's Link to you) just got a gig as a father -- another one. This time he's Mo, a bookbinder with the ability to bring characters in books to life simply reading aloud about them.

Peter Rabbit & The Japanese Tourist

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The Japan Times Online - U.K. biopic on 'Peter Rabbit' author set to lure Japanese to Lake District

U.K. biopic on 'Peter Rabbit' author set to lure Japanese to Lake District... ...

Biggest Obstacle

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No fear

The biggest obstacle to writing or illustrating a children's book and getting published is, well, your own fear.

"To put myself out there and know I was going to get rejected was a big obstacle for me," Stephenie Meyer, author of the wildly popular young adult novel Twilight, said... ...

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

Moonbird by Joyce Dunbar and Jane Ray

In the light of In the Picture, the Scope campaign that aims for more children with disabilities to be represented in children�s literature, this lovely picturebook warrants wide dissemination. It is a fairy tale about a young prince who is deaf.... ...

More Than A Book Abut Depression

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Guardian Unlimited Books | Review | The lost chord

Nicola Morgan is impressed by <em>A Note Of Madness by Tabitha Suzuma:

If this book weren't so compassionate, it would be a case study, and it is indeed a clear exposition of manic depression, or bipolar illness. We even learn the specific name, bipolar two, as well as some of the drugs that treat it and the risks of taking lithium. In other hands such information could be clod-hopping, but here it feeds our fascination and feels right.

Chandlersque Colfer

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The little people are big business - Books - Times Online

Amanda Craig reviews Artemis Fowl And The Lost Colony by Eoin Colfer:

Colfer�s technological wizardry, Chandler-esque dialogue and comic gusto have built a robust and detailed world, comparable to those of J. K. Rowling, Philip Pullman and Diana Wynne Jones.

Oppel Character Name Auction

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CBC Arts: Auction seeks bids to name character in Oppel book

One of Canada's most celebrated children's authors, Kenneth Oppel, will auction off naming rights for a character in his next book.
Children's writer Kenneth Oppel will allow the winning bidder to name a character in his next book. (Steve Carty) The author of the acclaimed Silverwing series and more recently, Skybreaker, has donated the naming rights as a fundraiser for the Canadian Children's Book Centre in Toronto...

Harper Hottie

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Michael Stearns got the nod for being "one of the few single, straight men in children's publishing"�a rare feat, indeed. An editorial director with HarperCollins' children's division, Stearns got props for his "Paul Bettany-esque" looks�with "blue eyes, perfectly sculpted nose, high cheekbones, and long lean body"�but the extra points stem from his wit�and his "martini-glass-through-the-nose" stories...

Children's books are not represented in the Vote on the Hottie of Publishing, Women's Division...

Death Madness And...

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

Just In Case by Meg Rosoff

this disturbing, blackly comic, sophisticated meditation on death, madness and sexuality is powerful and tenaciously haunting. NICOLETTE JONES

Mortal Ghost Chapter 4

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Mortal Ghost

Chapter 4 of L Lee Lowe's online serial novel for young adults... The author posts a new chapter every Friday.

Tockla's World

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Tockla's World of Children's Literature

New blog on the block:

Tockla's World of Children's Literature is written by Laura Atkins a children's literature enthusiast now based in the south-east. Although only four days old, it's already clear that this is going to be a lively addition to the blogging scene. Also includes a link to Laura's interview with Annie Eaton and Maloriie Blackman which first appeared on ACHUKA in 2002 but which is currently unavailable here. There are many other useful links in the sidebar, so visit the Tockla's World astraight away and bookmark it!

900 Pages Long

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Natural magic of the brave and good - Books - Times Online

Amanda Craig reviews Forest Mage by Robin Hobb, part of The Soldier Son trilogy:

The Soldier Son [trilogy] can be read as a political satire on American military aggression, but on a more personal level it is profoundly perceptive about the challenge faced by the honourable, brave and good.... ...Rich in character and plot, and 900 pages long, this is the kind of fantasy that Anthony Trollope would have written if he lived now.

Anne Fine Interview

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ACHUKA Interviews

Jacob Hope, ACHUKA's most industrious book reviewer, has conducted a wide-ranging inerview with Anne Fine. I happen to think it's one of the best author interviews ACHUKA has ever run and have no hesitation in marking it as

Very Highly Recommended!

Newsround Competition

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CBBC Newsround | Press Pack Reports | Competition: Report from the Edinburgh Book Festival

Link to CBBC Newsround Edinburgh Book Festival competition - deadline Aug 13th - children can enter using the online form

The winner will spend the day getting us all the literary low-down - checking out workshops and even rubbing shoulders with top authors and illustrators!

Waterstone's Departure

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Publishing News - News Page

From Publishing News:

Perhaps Grey, like Scott Pack (see below) will start a blog and let us know :)

Big Mouth Blog

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Me And My Big Mouth :: The Scott Pack Blog

The Scott Pack Blog
Scott Pack is Commercial Director of The Friday Project. Prior to joining TFP in the summer of 2006, Scott was Buying Manager for Waterstones.
Me And My Big Mouth is Scott's uncensored blog on life, the publishing industry and everything. ACHUKA will keep a watchful eye on it and alert you to any entries remotely relevant to children's and young adult books.

Audio Link

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Andy Griffiths and Judith Blackshaw

Andy Griffiths and Judith Blackshaw in conversation with Richard Fidler - audiolink

Harry Toppled

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Young spy breaks the spell of boy wizard - Britain - Times Online

Having dominated the bestsellers� charts for nine years, the boy wizard created by J. K. Rowling has been toppled by Alex Rider, a 14-year-old spy from the pen of Anthony Horowitz. Days after the release of a new film adaptation of a novel by Horowitz, Stormbreaker, the author has topped the children�s bestsellers� charts. ...

Borders Boobs

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SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. -- A local woman said she was disgusted at what she found among children's books in a local store...

Handler As Pop Video Director

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Pitchfork: Stars' Torquil Campbell Preps Second Memphis Album

Daniel Handler s set to co-direct the video to accompany release of a new single by Memphis (from their second album A Little Place In The Wilderness)

"I'll Do Whatever You Want" is an upbeat, likeable piece of dreamy guitar pop with a couple of keyboard flourishes thrown into the background for good measure. That is, it sounds a lot like a Stars song, which is not a bad thing. Daniel Handler, author of the Lemony Snicket children's books, will co-direct (with Campbell) the song's video, which will be filmed in Vancouver in early September.

The picture book is back!

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Devas T. Rants and Raves!: The picture book is back! And so am I

"The picture book is back!"
D Tate reports on the 35th Annual sCBWI Conference held in Los Angeles on his blog.

Harry Potter Adult Convention

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Guardian Unlimited Books | By genre | Harry Potter and the mystery of an academic obsession

And you thought Harry Potter was kids' stuff ? Try telling that to the delegates who packed into a conference in Las Vegas last week discussing moral alignment and metanarrative in the works of JK Rowling. But one question: why were the mostly female delegates dressed up as witches and schoolgirls and talking feverishly about Potter porn?

Carole Cadwalladr
Sunday August 6, 2006
The Observer

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

The Fantastic Mr Wani by Kanako Usui

This picturebook won the best new illustrator award in Booktrust�s Early Years awards for 2005. Usui has a sophisticated sense of the design of a page, and his pictures have the child-friendliness of computerised cartoons without the nasty slickness...NICOLETTE JONES

Centre Of My World

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Guardian Unlimited Books | Review | Review: Centre of My World by Andreas Steinhofel

Meg Rosoff reviews Centre Of My World by Andreas Steinhofel:

Centre of My World qualifies as one of the increasing number of crossover novels that punch full weight both in terms of style and subject. Breaking all the rules of the young adult novel with its calm, internalised landscapes and eccentric, meandering narrative, it pulls the reader forward powerfully towards the open air, towards freedom and possibilities and growth.

Will & Leonardo

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Portraits of artists as young men - Books - Times Online

Amanda Craig reviews

Will Shakespeare and the Pirate's Fire by Robert J Harris
"Packed with spies, sword-fights, daring escapes and traitorous villains, this is just the kind of swashbuckling adventure to engage bored schoolchildren in Shakespeare..."


The Medici Seal by Theresa Breslin
"Not only is it a gripping historical thriller, it is an exceptionally touching exploration of a relationship between a man and a boy..."

Toughening Up

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Authors urge Rowling to spare Potter?|?Top News?|?

Reuters report about a joint appearance by J. K. Rowling, Stephen King and John Irving:

"When fans accuse me of sadism, which doesn't happen that often, I feel I'm toughening them up to go on and read John and Stephen's books," [JKR] said. "I think they've got to be toughened up somehow. It's a cruel literary world out there."

Divine Secrets

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Soundtrack to the Motion Picture - Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya (Young Adult Young Adult) Sisterhood

What boggles my mind is the exponential growth & depth & breadth & excellence of today's young adult fiction... ...

A LiveJournal blog entry enthusing about contemporary 'YA' fiction...

Pop-Up Craft

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Successful pop-up book team Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart discuss their craft and more ... ...

Bullying Series

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icWales - 'I'd read the boys bedtime stories and I'd be thinking to myself that I could do better'

A CHANCE trip to the seaside for children's author Julie Hegarty resulted in a book series which is now fighting bullying in primary schools. The mother-of-three's inspiration for her debut book came after a conversation with her son about the name for a shell. Now the Michelle series is being used to encourage very young children to think about bullying and their actions.

Michelle In Crabbit Comes To Stay

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This page is an archive of entries from August 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

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