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    July 11, 2014: Apply for a Thurber House residency!

    Thurber House has a Children’s Writer-in-Residence program for middle-grade authors each year and  guidelines and application form for the 2015 residency were just released.

    This unique residency has been in existence since 2001, offering  an opportunity for authors to have time to work on their writing in a fully furnished apartment, in the historic boyhood home of author and humorist, James Thurber. Deadline is October 31, 2014. For details, go to READ MORE

    July 10, 2014:

    Spread MG books in unexpected places 7/19
    Drop a copy of your own book or of another middle-grade favorite in a public place on July 19 -- and some lucky reader will stumble upon it.
    Ginger Lee Malacko is spearheading this Middle Grade Bookbomb (use the hashtag #mgbookbomb in social media) -- much in the spirit of Operation Teen Book Drop.  Read more ...

June 16, 2014:
Fizz, Boom, Read: Summer reading 2014

Hundreds of public libraries across the U.S. are celebrating reading this summer with  the theme Fizz, Boom, Read! Find out more about this year's collaborative summer reading program and check out suggested booklists and activities. Read more ...
 

April 30, 2014:
Join the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign and help change the world

The conversation on diversity in children's books has grown beyond book creators and gate keepers to readers and book buyers. What can you do? Take part in the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign May 1 though 3 on Tumblr and Twitter and in whatever creative ways you can help spread the word to take action. Read more ….

April 11, 2014:
Fall 2014 Children's Sneak Peek
A peek at forthcoming middle grade books (as well as picture books and YA books) in a round-up from Publisher's Weekly. First printed in the February 22 issue, but now available online. Time to add to your to-read list. Read more ...

April 9, 2014:
How many Newbery winners have you read?
You could make a traditional list of all the Newbery Medal Award-winning Children's Books you've read, but there's something so satisfying when you check them off and get a final tally on this BuzzFeed quiz. Read more ...

March 28, 2014:
Middle Grade fiction is hot at 2014 Bologna Children's Book Fair

For the second year in a row, publishers are clamoring for middle-grade, reporters Publishers Weekly. "I’ve been coming [to Bologna] for 12 to 15 years, and I’ve never had as many European publishers asking for middle-grade," said Steven Chudney of the Chudney Agency. Read more ...

February 14, 2014:
Cybils Awards announced
Ultra by David Carroll (Scholastic Canada) wins the Cybil for middle grade fiction; Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud (Disney Hyperion) wins for Speculative Fiction. Read more.

January 27, 2014: And the Newbery Medal goes to ...
Kate DiCamillo won the Newbery Medal for "Flora & Ulysses"; Rita Williams-Garcia won the Coretta Scott King Author award for "P.S. Be Eleven." Newbery Honor awards to authors Vince Vawter, Amy Timberlake, Kevin Henkes and Holly Black. For all the exciting ALA Youth Media Award News ... READ MORE

November 12, 2013:
Vote in the GoodReads semifinal round

Readers' votes have narrowed the middle-grade semifinals down to 20 titles. Log in to your GoodReads account and vote for your favorite middle-grade (and in other categories, of course). Read more ...

November 9, 2013:
Publishers Weekly Top Children's Books of 2013

Middle-grade and young adult titles selected by the editors of Publishers Weekly as their top picks of the year. Let the season of "top ten books" begin! Read more ...

October 14, 2013:
Middle Shelf: Cool Reads for Kids debuts January 2014

Shelf Media Group, publisher of Shelf Unbound indie book review magazine, will launch a new free digital-only publication for middle-grade readers. The debut issue features interviews with such notable authors as Margaret Peterson Haddix and Chris Grabenstein as well as reviews, excerpts, and more. Middle Shelf will be published bi-monthly beginning in January 2014.
Read more ...

September 19, 2013: Writer-in-Residence program at Thurber House

Dream of time and space to focus on your own writing project? Applications now being accepted (11/1/2013 deadline) for The Thurber House Residency in Children's Literature, a month-long retreat in the furnished third-floor apartment of Thurber House in Columbus, Ohio. Read more ...

September 18, 2013: Vermont College of Fine Arts Scholarship opportunity

Barry Goldblatt Literary launches The Angela Johnson Scholarship, a talent-based grant for writers of color attending the MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults program at VCFA. Up to two $5,000 grants will be awarded each year. Read more ....

September 16, 2013:
National Book Awards longlist for youth literature

For the first time, the NBA is presenting lists of 10 books/authors on the longlist in each category. The 2013 young adult literature list includes five middle grade novels and five YA. Read more ...

Sept. 13, 2013: Spring preview
Check out Publishers Weekly roundup of upcoming children's books to be published in spring 2014. Read more...

August 21, 2013:
Want to be a Cybils Award Judge?

Middle grade categories are fiction, speculative fiction, nonfiction. Applications due August 31! Read more ...

August 19, 2013:
S&S and BN reach a deal
Readers will soon be able to find books from Simon & Schuster at Barnes & Noble. The bookstore chain was locked in a disagreement with the publisher over how much it was willing to pay for books. Read more ...

August 6, 2013:
NPR's 100 Must-Reads for Kids
NPR's Backseat Book Club asked listeners to nominate their favorite books for readers ages 9 to 14. More than 2,000 people nominated titles, and a panel of Newbery authors brought the list to 100. Most are middle grade books. Read more ...

 
July 2, 2013:
Penguin & Random House Merger

The new company, Penguin Random House, will control more than 25 percent of the trade book market in the United States. On Monday, the newly formed company began to take shape, only hours after a middle-of-the-night announcement that the long-planned merger had been completed. Read more ...

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  • The Great Library Giveaway WINNER (And Final Spotlights)!

    Uncategorized

    Today is the day! We have compiled all nominations into our random generator, and it has chosen a winner for us. We are pleased to announce that we will be sending our 68-book middle-grade collection to:

    Old Orchard Elementary School Library in Valencia, California!

    Our random generator pulled Tina Daucher’s name from the nearly 375 entries we received for our Great Library Giveaway. Thanks to her, the children at Old Orchard Elementary will soon be inundated with piles of books graciously donated by authors, publishers, and middle-grade book lovers throughout the United States. And as thanks for nominating such a worthy library, we will be sending Tina a $25 gift card to her local independent bookstore so her own home library can grow as well. Tina, be watching for an email from us with additional information.

    Here is the final spotlight of titles donated for this giveaway.  Thank you so much to all those who have sent us a book or two!  And we hope you enjoy these and the rest of the titles, Old Orchard Elementary!

    8th Grade Super Zero by Olugbemisola Rhuday Perkovich

    Description from Indiebound:

    Ever since a deeply unfortunate incident earlier this year, Reggie’s been known as “Pukey” McKnight at his high-intensity Brooklyn middle school. He wants to turn his image around, but he has other things on his mind as well: his father, who’s out of a job; his best friends, Ruthie and Joe C.; his former best friend Donovan, who’s now become a jerk; and of course, the beautiful Mialonie. The elections for school president are coming up, but with his notorious nickname and “nothing” social status, Reggie wouldn’t stand a chance, if he even had the courage to run.

    Then Reggie gets involved with a local homeless shelter, the Olive Branch. Haunted by two of the clients there–George, a once-proud man now living on the streets, and Charlie, a six-year-old kid who becomes his official “Little Buddy”–he begins to think about making a difference, both in the world and at school. Pukey for President? It can happen . . . if he starts believing.

    The Ghost of Crutchfield Hall by Mary Downing Hahn

    Description from Indiebound:

    When twelve-year-old Florence boards the crowded horse-drawn coach in London, she looks forward to a new life with her great uncle and aunt at Crutchfield Hall, an old manor house in the English countryside. Anything will be better, she thinks, than the grim London orphanage where she has lived since her parents’ death.
    But Florence doesn’t expect the ghost of her cousin Sophia, who haunts the cavernous rooms and dimly lit hallways of Crutchfield and concocts a plan to use Florence to help her achieve her murderous goals. Will Florence be able to convince the others in the household of the imminent danger and stop Sophia before it’s too late?

    Hugging the Rock by Susan Taylor Brown

    Description from Indiebound:

    What do you do when your mom runs away from home?

    Rachel retreats into herself–away from the father who has always kept his distance, away from school, and away from her best friend. Rachel’s mom says that her dad is a rock, the good kind you can always count on. But Rachel doesn’t even know if he really loves her. And she doesn’t know the secrets he’s kept since before she was born. Slowly, over time, Rachel grows close to the parent who stayed and comes to understand the truth of why her mom left.

    This bittersweet story of loss and revelation reveals the powerful and complex bond between fathers and daughters.

    Mudville by Kurtis Scaletta

    Description from Indiebound:

    Welcome to Moundville, where it’s been raining for longer than Roy McGuire has been alive. Most people say the town is cursed—right in the middle of their big baseball game against rival town Sinister Bend, black clouds crept across the sky and it started to rain. That was 22 years ago . . . and it’s still pouring.

    Baseball camp is over, and Roy knows he’s in for a dreary, soggy summer. But when he returns home, he finds a foster kid named Sturgis sprawled out on his couch. As if this isn’t weird enough, just a few days after Sturgis’s arrival, the sun comes out. No one can explain why the rain has finally stopped, but as far as Roy’s concerned, it’s time to play some baseball. It’s time to get a Moundville team together and finish what was started 22 years ago. It’s time for a rematch.

    Noonie’s Masterpiece by Lisa Railsback

    Description from Indiebound:

    Fantastic illustrations with a fresh, contemporary look enrich this debut novel about a 10-year-old aspiring artist stuck living with an aunt, uncle, and cousin who clearly don’t recognize her genius. A humorous and heartfelt reminder that “a brilliant artist is never afraid,” this book reveals that sometimes our greatest masterpieces are the bonds we unexpectedly forge with the people in our lives.


    Operation Yes by Sara Holmes

    Description by Julie Wilson from Bookworm, as quoted at Indiebound:

    Bo’s life is centered on a North Carolina Air Force Base, but what has always seemed like a cozy world gets shaken up when he starts sixth grade. There’s a new teacher who challenges all his ideas, a cousin who has come to join his family while her mom is deployed to Iraq, and even some change stirring in his own family. Lots of humor and can-do attitudes make Bo and his friends worth getting to know.


    Palace Beautiful by Sarah DeFord Williams

    Description from Indiebound:

    When sisters Sadie and Zuzu Brooks move to Salt Lake City, they discover a secret room in the attic of their new house, with a sign that reads “Palace Beautiful” and containing an old journal. Along with their neighbor, dramatic Belladonna Desolation (real name: Kristin Smith), they take turns reading the story of a girl named Helen living during the flu epidemic of 1918. The journal ends with a tragedy that has a scary parallel to Sadie and Zuzu’s lives, and the girls become obsessed with finding out what happened to Helen after the journal ends. Did she survive the flu? Is she still alive somewhere? Or could her ghost be lurking in the nearby graveyard?

    Sarah DeFord Williams has created a gripping read that covers two time periods, many fantastic characters, and a can’t-put-it-down ending, all with delightful, extraordinary prose.

    The Rise and Fall of Mt. Majestic by Jennifer Trafton

    Description from Indiebound:

    Ten-year-old Persimmony Smudge leads (much to her chagrin) a very dull life on the Island at the Center of Everything . . . until the night she overhears a life-changing secret. It seems that Mount Majestic, the rising and falling mountain in the center of the island, is not a mountain at allÑitÕs the belly of a sleeping giant, moving as the giant breathes. Now Persimmony and her new friend Worvil the Worrier have to convince all the islandÕs other quarreling inhabitantsÑincluding the silly Rumblebumps, the impeccably mannered Leafeaters, and the stubborn young kingÑthat a giant is sleeping in their midst, and must not be woken.

    Enhanced with Brett HelquistÕs dazzling illustrations, Jennifer TraftonÕs rollicking debut tells the story of one brave girlÕs efforts to make an entire island believe the impossible.

    Solving Zoe by Barbara Dee

    Description from Indiebound:
    Zoe Bennett feels lost at her fancy private school.

    She’s not the star drama queen like her sister, or a brainiac math genius like her brother. Luckily her best friend, Dara, is just as content as Zoe is to stay in the shadows — or is she? When Dara gets a part in the school musical, Zoe feels abandoned. What’s worse, Zoe’s practically being stalked by the weird new kid, Lucas. Then Lucas accidentally drops his notebook and Zoe finds it’s written in symbols and numbers — it’s complete gibberish. Yet she sees her name in there, plain as day. Now Lucas is telling her she’s a natural code-reading genius — or some kind of mental freak.

    As Zoe’s daydreaming lands her in trouble at school, anonymous notes start to appear in students’ lockers, and Zoe is the number one suspect. Solving word puzzles may come easily to her, but now there’s more at stake — will Zoe be able to solve her way out of this?

    With plenty of wit and insight, Barbara Dee has created this fresh, funny story of a girl who discovers that fitting in sometimes means standing out.

    The Summer of Moonlight Secrets by Danette Haworth

    Description from Indiebound:

    At The Meriwether, Florida’s famous antebellum hotel off of Hope Springs, nothing is quite as it seems. Secret staircases give way to servants’ quarters and Prohibition-era speakeasies make for the perfect hide-and-seek spot. Allie Jo Jackson knows every nook and cranny of The Meriwether—she’s lived there her whole life—and nothing surprises her, until the first time she spots the enigmatic and beautiful Tara emerging from the springs. Tara’s shimmery skin, long flowing hair, and strange penchant for late moonlight swims disguise a mysterious secret—and once Allie Jo and her friend Chase discover Tara’s secret, nothing will ever be the same.
    From the celebrated author of Violet Raines Almost Got Struck by Lightning comes another magical summer tale full of memorable characters and a one-of-a-kind setting.

    Up and Down the Scratchy Mountains by Laurel Snyder

    Description from Indiebound:

    THIS IS THE tale of Lucy and her best friend, Wynston. Until recently, they spent their days paddling in the river, picking blackberries, and teasing each other mercilessly. But now, King Desmond has insisted that Wynston devote every spare second to ruby-shining and princess-finding. Lucy feels left out. So she sets off for the Scratchy Mountains to solve the mystery of her missing mother. When Wynston discovers that Lucy is gone, he tears after her, and together they embark on a series of strange and wonderful adventures.

    5 Comments

    5 Comments

    1. Donna Gephart  •  Nov 30, 2010 @9:53 am

      Congratulations, Old Orchard! This book giveaway was such a great idea. Thanks so much for allowing me to be part of it.

    2. Wendy S  •  Dec 1, 2010 @5:45 am

      Congratulations, Old Orchard! Happy Reading!

    3. brian_ohio  •  Dec 2, 2010 @11:39 am

      Congrats to Old Orchard!!! Lots of great books to enjoy!

    4. Laurie Beth Schneider  •  Dec 2, 2010 @4:48 pm

      Wish I could be there when the box arrives! Congratulations!

    5. Diana Greenwood  •  Dec 6, 2010 @2:01 pm

      Congratulations!! Enjoy the bounty!