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Showing posts from December, 2011

Who's A Happy Hugglewug, Then?

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Disney's London based production base has given the go-ahead for a new animated series 'The Happy Hugglemonsters' which will premiere in August 2012 on Disney Junior and will be airing in over 150 countries worldwide. This 52x11 minute series, aimed at preschool children, is based on the wonderful picture book 'I'm A Happy Hugglewug' by our wonderful, wonderful Niamh Sharkey.
And if all of that isn't enough to make you happy, the series will be produced by Brown Bag Films' Dublin-based studio.... making Happy Hugglewugs out of us all.
http://niamhsharkey.blogspot.com/2011/12/happy-hugglemonsters.html?spref=fb

Some of My Christmas and Winter Favourites

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We're at one week and counting until the big day! Every year, I always bring home one special book for the season, and my collection is growing exponentially. I'd like to take a moment to share with you a few of my favourites over the years. These books come out year after year for the whole family to enjoy. I hope you enjoy them as well.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
This book needs no introduction, but I need to add that my very favourite edition of this is the one illustrated by PJ Lynch...beautiful and evocative!








Twas the Night Before Christmas illustrated by Matt Tavares
Again, a story that needs no introduction and there are numerous editions available, with new editions published nearly every year. For me, the edition that sums up the time and the spirit of this story is illustrated in black and white by Matt Tavares. Timeless!



North Child by Edith Pattou
North Child is not really a Christmas story, but it is a beautiful and eloquent winters' tale. Based on the …

R.I.P. Russell Hoban

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True legend and most beloved author Russell Hoban has passed away at the age of 86. While his work was prolific to say the least, and he wrote across many genres, Hoban found his biggest comercial success with his children's books: The Mouse and His Child, The Marzipan Pig, and (my personal favourites) the Frances the Badger series: Bedtime for Frances was read over and over in our home.
It is fair to say that Hoban could be described as a maverick writer with truly original, creative gifts and talents and a unique ability to turn a plotline. His vision was truly unique in all his writing.
Hoban died last evening, 13th December. His unique vision, which was easily expressed in all his writings, will be remembered with great love and joy, and he will be truly missed.
Russell Hoban - born 4 February, 1925 died 13 December, 2011

Guardian Children's Advent Calendar

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It may be the 14th of December (where does the time go?), but it's not too late to check out the Guardian's Advent Calendar... even if you  have to play a bit of catch up.... Harry Potter quiz, decorate the tree, listen to clips from some of your favourite children's/YA authors; there are 24 ways to count down the remaining days with all kinds of book-related fun. Have you learned how to draw a penguin yet?
http://www.guardian.co.uk/childrens-books-site/interactive/2011/dec/01/count-down-christmas-childrens-books-interactive

Sarah Webb's Guide to Great Books for Christmas

If you're still in a quandary as to what books the kids will be looking for this Christmas, check out Sarah Webb's suggestions in today's Independent. It's a great place to start and will set you straight as to what's great out there.
http://www.independent.ie/entertainment/books/childrens-books-wimpy-kids-and-skeleton-detectives-it-must-be-christmas-2954492.html

Brand New and Brilliant!

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Here's a few of the stunning brand new books out 9over the last couple of months) for various age groups. Each one is truly fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable:
The Windvale Sprites by Mackenzie Crook
The morning after a storm has swept across the country, Asa wakes up to two shocking discoveries. The first is that his sleepy little village, Windvale, is now completely unrecognisable due to all the damage. The second...among the debris that is now his back garden, Asa finds a tiny winged body; and it's not an insect. It appears to be a fairy. But fairies don't really exist... or do they? Fabulous story with marvellous illustrations throughout, all done by the author.



The Sleeping Army by Francesca Simon
Freya is an ordinary, contemporary school girl, living in a contemporary world with one very big difference.... the people still worship the ancient Norse gods. One night, while stuck with her father as he works the night shift in the British Museum, Freya finds herself inex…

review: Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent

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Just a quick link for you all. I've had another review published on The Bookbag. Here's the link for my review of the fabulous 'Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent' by Alan Early, published by The Mercier Press. This is the first book of the 'Father of Lies Chronicles', and frankly... after reading this one, I just can't wait for book two!
http://www.thebookbag.co.uk/reviews/index.php?title=Arthur_Quinn_and_the_World_Serpent_%28The_Father_of_Lies_Chronicles%29_by_Alan_Early

Books for Sharing.....

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Nothing helps young readers develop more than being read to at home. It helps them in school, helps their literacy and their imagination grow, and it creates a lifetime of memories and a deep love of books. Here's a few suggestions from this years' books for the whole family to gift, own and enjoy (in no particular order.)

Sally Go Round The Stars by Sarah Webb & Claire Ranson, illustrated by Steve McCarthy
A real treasure trove of traditional Irish rhymes from everybodys' childhood. This beautifully illustrated book will bring another generation of young readers the rhymes we knew from our own youths'. Pure delight! This is a must have for your home collection! (Royalties from this book all go to the National Children's Hospital Tallaght).




Nursery Rhymes (with CD) by The Speks
Loads of old nursery rhymes set to traditional Irish music, this will have the whole family up and dancing and singing along. Just brilliant! (And if you haven't caught one of the Spek…

Happy December!!!

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It's December 1st and the holiday shopping season is now in full swing. We've got the Late, Late Toy Show tomorrow night, and there have been loads of recommendations in the press and online lately in regards to which books to gift this season. (It was also really interesting to learn that, this year, here in Ireland, the gifts we all most want to receive is....BOOKS!) I just thought I'd add to the mix with a few suggestions of my own.
These are not necessarily echoing the recommendations already made by many of my brilliant colleagues and friends in the book business. I thought I'd try to have some alternatives that haven't received as much recognition...though I think you'll find that's not necessarily true, either.
Anyway.. today, I'm going to recommend some series. I'm frequently asked about series at work. It makes sense. You're looking for something that will really excite your favourite young people about reading, and if there is more tha…