indieBRAG Kids

Susan Weintrob
Susan Weintrob, our Foodie Lit writer, is a food blogger and reviewer on her website, Susan grew up around food and its prep. Her father owned a deli and catering business, which taught her the key components of the industry. "Writing food blogs is an amazing opportunity. Cooking and talking about food is simply fun and takes me back to memories of my Dad."

A Wonderful Book, A Lovely Playground and a Snack- what could be more Fun!

  Dana Deserves a Playground Too by Yael Manor Sometimes you just fall in love with a book, the illustrations, the characters and the story.  And that is what has happened here. Yael Manor has written a story for children that needs telling.  Dana is a young girl with a loving family and friends. She goes to the playground where her friends are playing happily. Dana is in a wheelchair and there is nothing there that she can do.  Not the swings, not the carousel, not the slide or the climbing equipment. Yael’s point is that Dana is not alone. Most community or school playgrounds simply do not welcome children who are physically challenged. Children like Dana are excluded from playing with friends. She told me how she was inspired to write this story.  “One day, I came across a story on Facebook about a woman who met a father and daughter at the playground. Due to a disability, the girl was confined to a wheelchair and unable to enjoy any of the playground facilities. All she could do was put her doll in the swing and push it, which caused great sorrow for her and her father. This story gave me the inspiration to…

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Let’s begin a Jolabokaflod!

The small country (329,000 people) of Iceland boasts it has more writers, books published and books read than anywhere else in the world. Can you imagine that? To those of us who are “Book People”, this is astonishing! A tradition we can all be envious of is Jolabokaflod – the “Christmas Book Flood”. Christmas Eve is a time of giving books and stores are sold out long before the special night.  Each person receives at least one print books (not ebooks) along with chocolate to enjoy for the rest of the evening when it is tradition to spend the night reading. It wasn’t long ago that all TV stations in Iceland stopped broadcasting from 6pm-10pm because everyone was reading! The book season kicks off in September when each family receives Bokatidindi, a catalog of new publications from the Iceland Publishers Association distributed free to every Icelandic home.  By early December book stores are sold out. Because of this amazing tradition, Reyckavik has been named by the United Nations as a “city of Literature” and it host the international children’s literature festival and the international Literary Festival. Icelanders have a grand history of storytelling.  The Icelandic Sagas written around the 13th century…

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Comics Are Books Too!

  When I was a child, I saved all my money to buy comic books!  Not just any comic books but the ones called Classics Illustrated and Classics Illustrated Junior.  The former were condensed, comic book versions of some of the greatest books ever written, and the latter were the greatest of fairy tales.  At one time, I owned them all and I am so fortunate that one of my sons, a serious comic book collector, has preserved those of these treasures that survived my growing up and many household moves over the years.  I credit these comic books for my love of books today. I was only about 5 years old when I began collecting the fairy tales—some well-known—and others just as wonderful but lesser known like The Penny Prince, The Wild Swans and Silly Hans.  When I was in grade school, I moved up to the Classics. Can you imagine a second grader reading The Last of the Mohicans?  In comic book form they were readable for a young child and I loved them.  I later made it a goal to read the entire book version of each of these classics. We all know the benefits of reading…

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Interview with Award Winning Author Michelle Eastman

We are delighted that Charla White has chosen to interview Michelle Eastman who is the author of, The Legend of Dust Bunnies, a Fairy’s Tail, our medallion honoree at indieBRAG. To be awarded a B.R.A.G. Medallion ®, a book must receive unanimous approval by a group of our readers. It is a daunting hurdle and it serves to reaffirm that a book such as, The Legend of Dust Bunnies, A Fairy’s Tail, merits the investment of a reader’s time and money. Michelle, what were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them? The goal for publishing my first book, The Legend of Dust Bunnies, a Fairy’s Tail, was to create a picture book for my son. Initially, I had no intention of publishing it for others to read. I just wanted him to have something special from me. Thankfully, the story became much bigger than that, and I am delighted with the way things turned out. Collaborating with illustrator Kevin Richter was a wonderful experience, and that experience led to book number two, Dust Fairy Tales: Absolutely Aggie. What do you think most characterizes your writing? What most characterizes my writing is rewriting. I always begin with a legal pad…

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indiebrag Cover Crush: A Boy Called Duct Tape by Christopher Cloud

By Book Blogger Margaret Cook - Just One More Chapter A Boy Called Duct Tape The cover for this book jumped out at me right away for various reasons. I recall seeing a pair of shoes identical to that in my front hallway once.  So looking at this cover just brought back so many memories and there are so many possibilities where this book can go.  As I write this up I have not read the synopsis for the story I am really curious to see where it goes. My initial thoughts and what I picture in my mind is an adventurous young boy who doesn't let the fact that he cannot get new runners stand in his way of doing what he wants. His family may be down in their luck and they cannot afford it or he is a boy who just likes to improvise and do his own thing. He is confident in who he is and doesn't care about the laughs and jeers these shoes invoke from fellow classmates.  I am also picturing a polite and respectful lad who is devoted to family and his friends (though he might not have many). Aside from the possible health…

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An Interview with the author of Veggie’s Bully

Our indieBRAG Kids chat with author C JoVan Williams A drawing by our indieBRAG Kids! Mrs. D and Class!I'm always happy to hear from readers! Thank you so much for reaching out to me and here are the answers to your questions. 1. I like it because it rhymes. Why did you make it funny?Devin, I wanted to keep young readers like you entertained while still telling an important story. As long as you stay positive, remember to always be true to yourself. 2. Why is Piggy so mean?Ewan, I don't even think Piggy know why he's so mean. Hopefully, he'll get better! 3. When was the story written?William, I wrote the story in December of 2013. 4. Why did you write about Veggie?Sophie, Veggie reminds me a little bit of me and how I deal with people who don't always have kind words to say. 5. Why do the characters have food names?Gideon, I love food just as much as I love writing, so I wanted to combine the two! 6. Why did you write this story?Julissa, I wanted to share with others that you don't have to let the words of others ruin your day...or your life! 7.…

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Angie Harris & Kelsey talk to Mrs. D’s Class

Our wonderful students in Mrs. D's class have a great interview with Angie Harris and Kelsey authors of Sue's Deep Sea Adventure~ Why was the girl afraid of her feet?              Sue was afraid of change. The new toes made her feel uncomfortable with herself and how others viewed her. She wanted to stay the same forever. The feet she wore in her dreams would not allow her to do that. Why did the shark want to eat Guss?             The shark was mean and liked to scare people. He chased Guss in his dreams as a way to torment him until Sue and Michelle scared him away. Why did they have superpowers?             They got the superpowers from the new feet that they got each night in their dreams. The powers made it possible for them to help others in trouble who suffered from nightmares. Why did you make a rhyming book?              I have always enjoyed stories that are written in poetry format. It flows better and the story is easier to remember when it reads like a song. Dr Seuss was always one of my favorite authors growing up. I try to make my stories sound similar to his in how…

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Talking with Lisa Ard- author of Saving Halloween!

    Thank you for answering my questions Mrs. Ard.Halloween is my favorite holiday so I loved your book. What made you write a book about a spooky family that is really pretty normal?One of the themes of Saving Halloween is that things (and people) aren't always what they appear to be. I think that's true in real life too. Sometimes the kid who seems to have it all and must be really happy, really isn't. Or sometimes a person with a disability, who we may think we'd have nothing in common with, shares our interests and becomes our best friend. The Spavento family may seem strange at first, and kind of spooky, but it turns out they're loving, fun and magical! Which family would you rather be a part of – Halloween's or Anne's?Oh definitely Halloween's! Did you grow up in a normal family or were they a bit strange- not as strange as Halloween's!Oh I suppose I thought they were strange when I was a kid – especially my brother, but looking back I'd say we were pretty normal. Do you have children?I have a 14-year old son named Holden and a 12-year old daughter Molly. An image…

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Ebook reader or not!

  EBook reader or not! Ok, it is no news that kids think technology is cool! If carrying an eBook reader makes you look cool, reading on one is even better. I like to read both my Kindle and a regular book- both are fun but I always have my Kindle when I am in the car or when I am traveling. Most of the eBooks are not as expensive and I can take lots with me- I have the whole series of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, my favorite books! I go to visit my MomMom's in Wisconsin in the summer and I can take all my books with me- and it fits in my backpack along with all my other "must haves"- hair brush, headband, snacks, teddy bear. A girl has to have her things. Even when I am waiting for my brother- which seems all the time- I read my Kindle. Do you know that Barnes and Noble have "The NOOK Kids Store" on line and you can find books by age and they tell you which are the most popular? Amazon lists children's eBooks but I don't think it is quite as easy. I only wish…

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a new year full of new books!

We are back in school after a wonderful Christmas! It is now time for me to think about books once again.  I have a couple of books I really want to talk to the authors about, so check back soon.  Do you have some questions for one of the authors of a B.R.A.G.Medallion Honoree?  Just let me know in the comments and I will be sure to ask. Talk to you soon-

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