Posts tagged Amulet Books
Posts tagged Amulet Books
Kirkus TV interviews Jon about his new six book series from Abrams/Amulet Books: “Jon Scieszka is the funniest kid’s writer in America, hands down. He’s also one of the most respected. We talk to Scieszka about his new book Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor, in which Frank Einstein, kid genius and inventor, is staying with his grandfather while his parents travel to Antarctica.”
Scieszka mixes science and silliness again to great effect.
Frank Einstein, kid genius and inventor, is staying with his grandfather while his parents travel to Antarctica. That’s just fine with Frank; he and his sidekick, Watson, have inventing to do, and Grampa Al’s fix-it shop is the perfect place to do science. Frank is hoping to win the Midville Science Prize because Grampa won when he was a kid…and because the prize money will let Frank save Grampa’s shop from the bill collectors. Frank’s attempt to build a SmartBot fails, but overnight, a spark ignites the brain he’s created for the bot, and the next morning he finds two very different robots in his workshop. Now he’s got Klink, a smart, self-assembled robot who can learn, and Klank, who’s really into hugging. Frank doesn’t feel right entering Klink and Klank in the contest since they assembled themselves, but together with Watson, the four of them can surely some up with something great. Only evil, rival child genius T. Edison stands in their way, and he’ll stop at nothing. Scieszka launches a six-book series with a likable protagonist and a good supporting cast. Science facts are slipped into the story on nearly every page, and Biggs’ two-color drawings are the C12H22O11 on the cookie.
Less wacky (and more instructive) than Scieszka’s Spaceheadz series—but just as much fun. (Science fiction/humor. 8-12)
“Dear Frank Einstein,From the Abrams website:
Please invent time machine. Send your books back in time to me in 1978.
Also a levitating skateboard.
—Tom Angleberger, The Strange Case of Origami Yoda
“In the final analysis, this buoyant, tongue-in-cheek celebration of the impulse to ‘keep asking questions and finding your own answers’ fires on all cylinders.” —Booklist, starred review
“I never thought science could be funny … until I read Frank Einstein. It will have kids laughing.” —Jeff Kinney, Diary of a Wimpy Kid
An amazingly touching self portrait of a child coping with friendship, family and school after suddenly becoming deaf due to meningitis at age four. CeCe Bell is a normal kid who faces an extraordinary challenge adapting to a new environment of quiet, learning how to understand and communicate with her friends and family after her illness. Honest, intimate, poignant and funny, El Deafo is ultimately a joyous triumph of one’s girl’s determination to navigate her way through the various pitfalls inherent in childhood friendships, first crushes, teachers, classmates, parents and siblings while managing her hearing issues. Her phonic ear, the audio device which enables her to hear more acutely in school, gives her superpower hearing: the ability to hear her teacher wherever she is in the school building, thereby giving her a distinct advantage with her school friends when she reveals its attributes. As a graphic novel memoir, El Deafo is seamlessly engaging and surprisingly helpful, illustrating aspects of the life of a little girl dependent upon visual cues for connections with illustrated diagrams. The illustrations are loving and playful and are the genius behind the book. Cece’s double talent of writing and illustrating bring her childhood experiences to life in ways that every reader can identify. I enjoyed seeing it as much as reading it and as a reader, I was cheering her on along the way. A note from the author explains deafness and the deaf culture in more detail. Kudos, Cece Bell!
"Totally charming graphic autobiography gives much needed insight into a girl’s childhood growing up with hearing aids. Sweet, funny, awkward and heroic, the graphic format is perfect (you certainly couldn’t read it out loud!). There’s nothing like this out there, an instant classic." — Angie Smits, Southern Territory Associates
"Though billed as a kids’ graphic novel, this intelligent, emotional, funny, and—let’s face it—adorable memoir will appeal to readers of all ages. Cece Bell’s story of growing up hearing impaired while searching for a true friend will make you smile and tear up in places. This would be a great book to read and discuss with your kids." — Janet Geddis, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA
A bout of childhood meningitis left Bell (Rabbit & Robot: The Sleepover) deaf at age four, and she was prescribed a Phonic Ear, with a receiver draped across her chest and a remote microphone her teachers wore. Her graphic memoir records both the indignities of being a deaf child in a hearing community (“IS. THAT. AAAY. HEAR-ING. AAAID?”) and its joys, as when she discovers that the microphone picks up every word her teacher says anywhere in the school. Bell’s earnest rabbit/human characters, her ability to capture her own sonic universe (“eh sounz lah yur unnah wawah!”), and her invention of an alter ego—the cape-wearing El Deafo, who gets her through stressful encounters (“How can El Deafo free herself from the shackles of this weekly humiliation?” she asks as her mother drags her to another excruciating sign language class)—all combine to make this a standout autobiography. Cece’s predilection for bursting into tears at the wrong time belies a gift for resilience that makes her someone readers will enjoy getting to know. Ages 8–12. — Publishers Weekly starred review, 7/7/2014.
A humorous and touching graphic memoir about finding friendship and growing up deaf.
When Cece is 4 years old, she becomes “severely to profoundly” deaf after contracting meningitis. Though she is fitted with a hearing aid and learns to read lips, it’s a challenging adjustment for her. After her family moves to a new town, Cece begins first grade at a school that doesn’t have separate classes for the deaf. Her nifty new hearing aid, the Phonic Ear, allows her to hear her teacher clearly, even when her teacher is in another part of the school. Cece’s new ability makes her feel like a superhero—just call her “El Deafo”—but the Phonic Ear is still hard to hide and uncomfortable to wear. Cece thinks, “Superheroes might be awesome, but they are also different. And being different feels a lot like being alone.” Bell (Rabbit & Robot: The Sleepover, 2012) shares her childhood experiences of being hearing impaired with warmth and sensitivity, exploiting the graphic format to amplify such details as misheard speech. Her whimsical color illustrations (all the human characters have rabbit ears and faces), clear explanations and Cece’s often funny adventures help make the memoir accessible and entertaining. Readers will empathize with Cece as she tries to find friends who aren’t bossy or inconsiderate, and they’ll rejoice with her when she finally does.
Worthy of a superhero. — Kirkus starred review
"There isn’t a jot of doubt in my mind that CeCe Bell’s book is going to be vastly beloved by nearly every child that picks it up. Engaging and beautifully drawn, to say nothing of its strength and out-and-out facts, El Deafo is going to help set the standard for what a memoir for kids should be. Infinitely clever. Undeniably fun. Don’t miss it." Elizabeth Bird, School Library Journal, A Fuse 8 Production Blog, August 21, 2014
@trkravtin Have you looked at p 40 of Jabba yet?— OrigamiYoda (@OrigamiYoda) August 28, 2013
@OrigamiYoda I read it all voraciously, but I must have missed it! *scurries off to look again*— Teresa Rolfe Kravtin (@trkravtin) August 28, 2013
@OrigamiYoda OMG!!!!!! I DID miss it. *happy dance* TY— Teresa Rolfe Kravtin (@trkravtin) August 28, 2013
"In The Shadow of Blackbirds is a page turning blast to the past. The time is 1918 with the world reeling from war and a deadly flu. Spiritualists claim they can put you in touch with your loved ones and take your picture with their ghosts. Our reluctant heroine, with her goggles that allow her to peer into the future, finds herself entangled in a ghostly mystery she’s determined to solve. If she survives, that is.” — Karen Schwettman, FoxTale Book Shoppe, Woodstock, GA
"This was a total package … Not only did Cat Winter’s score with this amazing story, but her cover is beautiful. LOVED! — Reader, Stevie Lynn Turner, pictured above.
Sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black lives up to her striking name—she’s a curious girl fascinated by science, living in 1918, “a year the devil designed,” as Mary puts it. With WWI raging on and Mary’s father on trial for treason, she goes to live with her Aunt Eva in San Diego, Calif., even as influenza sweeps across America, devastating the population and rendering those left behind paranoid and weary. Grieving for her childhood beau Stephen, who died while fighting overseas with the Army, Mary goes outside during a thunderstorm and is struck dead by lightning—for a few minutes. When Mary comes to, she discovers she can communicate with the dead, including Stephen. Winters’s masterful debut novel is an impressively researched marriage of the tragedies of wartime, the 1918 flu epidemic, the contemporaneous Spiritualism craze, and a chilling love story and mystery. Unsettling b&w period photographs appear throughout, à la Ransom Riggs’s Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, greatly adding to the novel’s deliciously creepy atmosphere. — Publishers Weekly
US National Library of Medicine and The Marlin Company, Wallingford, Connecticut
"Cat Winter’s debut novel … is creepy good. Winters … leaves readers haunted." — Chelsey Philpot, The Boston Globe, April 27, 2013
"Winters’ debut ropes in the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918, WWI shell shock, national prejudice, and spirit photography, and yet never loses focus from its primary thesis: desperation will make people believe—and do—almost anything. Mary Shelley Black, 16, has been sent to live with her aunt in San Diego, a city crawling with gauze mask–wearing citizens fearful of catching the deadly virus. Loss is everywhere, which means booming business for spirit photographer Julius, the older brother of Mary’s true love, Stephen, who is off fighting in the trenches. Stephen’s death coincides with Mary suffering electrocution, an event with strange aftereffects: Mary sends compass needles spinning, can taste emotions, and begins to see and hear Stephen’s ghost, in torment over the maniacal “birdmen” that tortured and killed him. Mary believes his spirit will rest when she uncovers the truth about his death—a truth more horrifying than most readers will expect. A scattering of period photos, including eerie examples of spirit photography, further the sense of time and place, but the main event here is Winters’ unconventional and unflinching look at one of the darkest patches of American history. More than anything, this is a story of the breaking point between sanity and madness, delivered in a straightforward and welcoming teen voice." — Daniel Kraus, Booklist
The Surprise Attack of Jabba the Puppett Teaser
"Dark times have fallen on McQuarrie Middle School. Dwight’s back—and not a moment too soon, as the gang faces the FunTime Menace: a new educational program designed to raise students’ standardized test scores. Instead, it’s driving everyone crazy with its obnoxious videos of Professor FunTime and his insidious singing calculator! When Principal Rabbski cancels the students’ field trip—along with art, music, and LEGO classes—to make time for FunTime, the students turn to Origami Yoda for help. But some crises are too big for Origami Yoda to handle alone: Form a Rebel Alliance the students must. United, can they defeat the FunTime Menace and cope with a surprise attack from Jabba the Puppett?" — ABRAMS Books website
Spotted last week at Scott’s Bookstore DWK The Third Wheel @AmuletBooks @WimpyKid
What is it that makes a novel primarily for teenagers, as opposed to anyone else? You might be surprised at the debate this question spawns. I’ve had many thoughtful discussions on the subject, sometimes with critics who raise the question about my own work, but I’ve also seen YA novelists denounce – and I use the word advisedly – books as brilliant as Mal Peet’s Life: An Exploded Diagram as great in themselves but definitely Not For Teenagers.Dying to Know You
Peet’s book sits in that hinterland where teenagers themselves reside: one foot in youth and one in the great wide world beyond. Aidan Chambers’s Dying to Know You, longlisted for this year’s Guardian Children’s Fiction prize, is likely to fuel the debate. Its unnamed narrator is a 75-year-old author of books for teenagers who is mourning the recent loss of his wife, who has to consider his sciatica before sitting for any length of time, and is constantly taking emergency urinary breaks in roadside hedges..
He befriends 18-year-old Karl. Taciturn but likeable, Karl has already left school and is working as a plumber. He approaches the narrator because his girlfriend, 16-year-old Fiorella – a fan of the author – has tired of his reticence and demanded he answer a series of questions about himself in “full-dress English”. What she doesn’t know is that Karl is severely dyslexic, unable to translate his thoughts into written words. For reasons of his own – namely that he hasn’t been able to write at all since the death of his wife – the author agrees to help Karl..
Their friendship is as unexpected to the characters as it is to us; at one point Karl has a violent run-in with thugs at the pub who put the worst spin on it. But Chambers is so skilled, so calmly truthful in his writing, that Karl’s simple, decent humanity and the narrator’s careful concern come across as entirely believable. Not all teenagers are the defiant balls of attitude they are too frequently portrayed as in the media. In fact, most aren’t, and none of them are that way all of the time. Most of them are like Karl: cautious, principled, finding their way..
Dying to Know You doesn’t stay long in its expected Cyrano de Bergerac groove. Fiorella responds quite badly when she finds out Karl’s words aren’t his own, and a camping trip she takes with Karl to get closer to him doesn’t go the way either of them planned. The story darkens, but never gratuitously, and Chambers is unafraid of frank discussions of sex, depression, the death of a parent, and even serious thoughts of suicide. Chambers himself is 78, a few years older than his novel’s narrator, and what emerges is not just a moving, unexpected story of the complexity of teenagers, but also a story of later life, of ageing and loss, and what experience really means..
So is this a book for teenagers? Why on earth not? It features two fully realised, complicated teenagers at its centre, viewed with a clear-eyed compassion by an observer who could have tipped towards the alien but remains fully human. It is perfect for that cloudy expanse between older teenager and younger adult, a novel that doesn’t pretend to advise, but merely sees its characters for who they really are. No one appreciates that more than a teenager does.
—Patrick Ness, The Guardian UK, 6/15/12