Archive for the 'Picture Books' Category

What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,
Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Bárður Oskarsson

h1 Friday, November 28th, 2014


“…’She is totally flat,’ said the rat.
For a while they just stood there looking at her.”

(Click to enlarge and see spread in its entirety)


 
This morning over at Kirkus, I write about the anniversary editions of Robie H. Harris’ It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, and Sexual Health and It’s So Amazing! A Book About Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families. These informative and thorough books for children (must-haves for parents and children’s libraries) on sexual health and puberty have been updated for their birthdays this year. Both books are illustrated by Michael Emberley.

That link is here.

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Last week, I wrote here about Bárður Oskarsson’s The Flat Rabbit, and I’m following up with some art today.

Enjoy. Read the rest of this entry �

Star Stuff with Stephanie Roth Sisson

h1 Thursday, November 27th, 2014

Carl Sagan was prolific. He used to walk around with one of those tape recorders that had a strap and a microphone on a cord and record ideas when they came to him. Ideas just poured out of the guy. I love that image of him wandering around with this, recording his thoughts about this and that. I had many of [his] books to draw on, as well as television, radio, and print interviews. Mostly, I was looking for material that would capture the feeling that he left his audience with — that feeling of wonder and wanting to explore and find out more. ”

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Today over at Kirkus, I chat with author-illustrator Stephanie Roth Sisson, pictured above, about Star Stuff, her new picture book biography of Carl Sagan.

That link is here, and next week I’ll have some art from the book here at 7-Imp.

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Photo of Stephanie Roth Sisson used by her permission.

A Moment with the Art of Lisbeth Zwerger

h1 Tuesday, November 25th, 2014



 
I’ve got some art here at 7-Imp today from Austrian illustrator Lisbeth Zwerger.

First up are Zwerger’s illustrations—originally created in 2009, I believe—from The Pied Piper of Hamelin, an edition of the story retold by Renate Raecke and translated by Anthea Bell. This was just released in September by Michael Neugebauer Publishing, a.k.a. Minedition. The Kirkus review writes: “This strange and unsettling tale is made all the stranger and more unsettling by Zwerger’s spare, isolated figures in their pale interiors and landscapes.” Today feels like a good day to share such a story, as it seems the entirety of the U.S. feels unsettled — given the news, that is, leaving us heavy-hearted.

Also from Minedition is Zwerger’s vision of The Night Before Christmas. This was released last month, a book with a small, cozy trim size and Zwerger’s take on Clement Clark Moore’s famous poem, first published in the 1800s. Zwerger’s illustrations were originally created in 2005. Pictured above are Dasher, Dancer, and part of the rest of St. Nick’s crew. Pictured right is the man himself, trying to cheer us up.

I’m glad, in both cases, that Minedition has released these new editions. I’m always pleased to see Zwerger’s artwork. She’s one of those illustrators who made me want to study children’s literature. In fact, if you’re a fan too, you may be happy to know this has been released. The copy I ordered finally arrived. In the Foreword, Peter Sís writes: “Her art flows and shines.” Yes, what he said.

Enjoy. Read the rest of this entry �

7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #407: Featuring August Hall

h1 Sunday, November 23rd, 2014


“Foxes, wolves, deer nest too. Forest knows waking, opening up.”
(Click to enlarge spread)


 
I always look forward to new picture book releases from Kentucky novelist and poet, George Ella Lyon. I reviewed her newest picture book, What Forest Knows (Atheneum, November 2014), illustrated by August Hall, for BookPage. That link is here, if you’d like to read more about it. And today I’m sharing some spreads from it.

While we’re on the subject of Lyon, I’m also currently reading this wonderful book, which she wrote with J. Patrick Lewis and which was released by WordSong last month:

There’s more about the book here, including several starred reviews, and here’s an interview with Lyon at Sylvia Vardell’s site.

Here are two more spreads from What Forest Knows: Read the rest of this entry �

What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,
Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Alexis Deacon

h1 Friday, November 21st, 2014


(Click to enlarge)


 
This morning over at Kirkus, I write about Bárður Oskarsson’s The Flat Rabbit, released by Owlkids Books in September. That link is here.

Last week, I wrote about Russell Hoban’s Jim’s Lion, which has been re-imagined as a graphic novel (Candlewick, November 2014) with the illustrations of Alexis Deacon. That link is here, and above and below are some spreads from the book, as well as the cover of the 2001 picture book with art from Ian Andrew.

Enjoy. Read the rest of this entry �

Hook, Heidi, and Hendrix

h1 Thursday, November 20th, 2014


“Though she couldn’t tell for certain from her vantage point, Jocelyn did not expect to find a single corset on the entire island. She was utterly charmed. Even so, the girl knew that somewhere down there, amidst all the wonder, a terrible beast was waiting. Reminds me a bit of my first wedding day.”


 
Just last week, dear Imps, I chatted over at Kirkus with author Heidi Schulz about her debut novel, Hook’s Revenge (Disney-Hyperion, September 2014), illustrated by John Hendrix. That link is here, but I wanted to follow up with some art from Hendrix today. Above and below are some of his interior illustrations from the book.

Enjoy. Read the rest of this entry �

Sci Fi Before Breakfast: A Visit with Tony DiTerlizzi
and Some Bonus Art from Ralph McQuarrie

h1 Tuesday, November 18th, 2014


An early sketch of Otto from DiTerlizzi’s WondLa trilogy
(Click to enlarge)


 

Ralph McQuarrie’s art from
Star Wars: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight by Tony DiTerlizzi


 
Caldecott Honor illustrator and author Tony DiTerlizzi is visiting 7-Imp this morning for an in-his-own-words type of piece, meaning I’m going to hand the site over to him to share some art and talk about his new books. I asked him about wrapping up his WondLa trilogy, which he just completed; Book III, The Battle for WondLa, was released in May. In this third and final installment of the illustrated science fiction fantasy trilogy, Eva Nine is on the run — yet is the only one capable of bringing peace to the humans and aliens of Orbona.

I also asked Tony what it was like to be asked to adapt the original Star Wars trilogy into a picture book for children, which is precisely what Lucasfilm asked him to do. The book, Star Wars: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight, features the existing artwork of concept artist Ralph McQuarrie, who was the artist behind the original Star Wars trilogy, and was released by Disney Lucasfilm Press in October.

Tony shares some process sketches and final art from WondLa, as well as some spreads from the Star Wars picture book adaptation. Here’s Tony in his own words, and I thank him for visiting.

Read the rest of this entry �

7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #406: Featuring Alex Barrow

h1 Sunday, November 16th, 2014


“This tale begins with Samuel Drew, wherever he goes, his dog goes too.
The day is fine, the sky is bright, as Sam and dog stroll into sight.
Look there he is, the little boy with dog-on-wheels, his favourite toy.
Let’s watch and find out where they go … But hurry up — we can’t be slow!”

(Click to enlarge)


 
This week over at BookPage, I have a review of Gabby Dawnay’s A Possum’s Tail, illustrated by Alex Barrow. The two have worked together on stories and poems for the UK’s OKIDO magazine, and this is their first picture book together. It was published this month from Tate Publishing in London but is distributed by Abrams here in the States.

The review is here, so you can head over there if you want more information. This morning, I share two spreads so that we can all get a sneak peek inside the book. One more is below.

Read the rest of this entry �

What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,
Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Floyd Cooper

h1 Friday, November 14th, 2014


“… With every bend, I hope. / With every plié, / every turn, /
every grand jeté, I hope. …”

(Click to enlarge spread and see rest of text)


 
This morning over at Kirkus, I write about
Russell Hoban’s Jim’s Lion. It’s been re-imagined as a graphic novel with the illustrations of Alexis Deacon. That link is here.

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Last week, I wrote here about Kristy Dempsey’s A Dance Like Starlight: One Ballerina’s Dream, illustrated by Floyd Cooper. Today, I’ve got some spreads from the book.

Enjoy.

Read the rest of this entry �

Cartoon-Me Interviews Red Panda and Hippo …

h1 Friday, November 14th, 2014


As you can see, I’m doing something totally different today.

That’s the cartoonized version of me up there, interviewing the two main characters of an upcoming graphic novel for children, called Hippopotamister. Springing from the mind of comics creator John Green (pictured right), who lives in Brooklyn and is best known for Teen Boat, his collaboration with Dave Roman, Hippopotamister is Green’s solo debut. It’s a comic geared at younger children and tells the story of Hippo and his friend, Red Panda. They live in the city zoo but head out to get jobs in the bustling world of humans. (Hippo becomes the titular Hippopotamister — just to survive out in the big city.) Red Panda finds the occupational world challenging, and even though Hippo excels at each job he secures, Red Panda manages to get them fired. The book is scheduled for an early-2016 release from First Second.

You can read a great process essay from John here at School Library Journal, as well as this interview at The Beat. (P.S. Mr. Schu got cartoonized, too.)

I thank John for visiting. This makes the second time I’ve interviewed wise-crackin’ animals. (Punk Farm was my first.)

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Art is copyright © 2014 by John Green and used by his permission.

Photo of John Green taken by Ellen B. Wright.