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TOON’s Lost in NYC Earns SIX Starred Reviews!
TOON’s Lost in NYC Earns SIX Starred Reviews!

GET ON THE EXPRESS TRAIN with Lost in NYC: A Subway Adventure, published by TOON Books! The new TOON Graphic, aimed at ages 8-12, is burning up the charts with starred reviews in School Library Journal, Kirkus, Booklist, Horn Book, Shelf Awareness, and Publishers Weekly.

Written by Eisner-nominated author Nadja Spiegelman, and illustrated by one of Spain’s most celebrated experimental cartoonists, Sergio García Sánchez, this story brings all the bustle and beauty of NYC to young readers around the world. In an interview on Comic Book Resources, Spiegelman said “it’s foremost a unique visual experience, but I suppose if I meant to tell the plot, then it’s about a new kid who gets lost during a field trip to the Empire State Building. It’s also a non-fiction book filled with facts about the New York City subway system that reflects my own love for the city.”

“The storytelling is kinetic. . . . This is a love song to the city that never sleeps as well as a solid friendship story. Paired with robust, detailed historical notes and an engaging Spanish translation by Moral, this book is sure to be a hit with kids and their adults. Recommended for all collections.”—School Library Journal, April 2015, starred review

“Required reading for anyone, tourist or resident, mystified by or anxious about using arguably the greatest public transportation system on the planet.”—Kirkus Reviews, February 2015, starred review

“Young readers enamored by the Big Apple will be both delighted by the wealth of information and atmospheric artwork and encouraged by Pablo and Alicia’s successful, if a bit nerve-wracking, solo journeys.”—Booklist, April 2015, starred review

“In this vibrant graphic-novel picture book, Spiegelman’s lively text is superbly matched by García Sánchez’s art. His detailed images from every perspective, filled with trains, stations, people, streets, skyscrapers, and even maps, vividly convey the kids’ travels below and above ground.” The Horn Book Magazine, July 2015, starred review

“With humor and sensitivity, Spiegelman reveals how getting lost can be the first step toward finding your way—while also giving NYC residents and visitors alike a valuable primer on the subway system and its history.” Publishers Weekly, April 2015, starred review

“A graphic novel tale of friendship that combines fascinating facts about the New York subway system, the Empire State Building, history and geography.” Shelf Awareness, April 2015, starred review

“García’s adroit art bursts with activity, while the story highlights the ingenuity city life brings out in the young. Packed with subway maps, lore and miscellany, it’s sure to be treasured by tweens and adults, too.” New York Times

“Aimed at ‘visual learners,’ this elegantly presented and emotionally satisfying graphic story is well worth the time even of children who have never set foot in Manhattan.” The Wall Street Journal, April 2015

“Visually stunning (to say nothing of its accuracy) with abundant factual information wriggled into every available crevice, you don’t have to be a New Yorker to enjoy this book (though, boy, does it sure help).” Elizabeth Bird, NYPL Youth Materials Specialist, March 2015

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The #DioramaChallenge has been issued!

To celebrate the launch of MY LIFE IN DIORAMAS, Tara Altebrando has challenged middle grade authors to make dioramas of their latest books. Many have answered, including Leslie Margolis, Anne Ursu, and Rita Williams-Garcia. You can see the fruits of their labor here.

Now you can bravely take up the #DioramaChallenge by hosting a special craft day in your library or classroom! Download our activity guide here.

#DioramaChallenge on Twitter:
#DioramaChallenge on Facebook


My Life in Dioramas-

Kate Marino knows very well that home is where her heart is, and if she had any say in the matter, her heart would stay put in Big Red. The old, rambling farmhouse has withstood the test of time with her family, but now Kate’s parents have decided to sell it from under her feet.
The preventative solution: sabotage the realtor’s tours with the help of best friends and a plan that has maximum stinkage potential.
The back-up plan: hang on to at least a little bit of life at Big Red by creating shoebox dioramas of each room.
But even with a full-scale assault, will her mission be a success? And if not, what will the diorama of Kate’s future look like?
With a keen eye for capturing the moments that matter, acclaimed author Tara Altebrando explores the pain—and promise—of letting go.


A beautiful, poignant book trailer for MY LIFE IN DIORAMAS.






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Library Reads & the Association of American Publishers Welcome you to BookExpo America 2015!

Hear first hand what book publishers are excited about for the forthcoming season, and learn their behind the scenes secrets why!

Thursday, May 28

1:45-3:15 pm. AAP Annual Librarians’ Book Buzz—Part I. Jacob K. Javits Center (Room 1E14)

Hear the first installment of what book publishers are excited about for the forthcoming season, and learn their behind the scenes secrets why!  Dominique R. Jenkins Academic Conventions and Library Marketing Manager, Penguin Group USA; Jen Childs, Director, Library Marketing, Random House; Michelle Fadlalla, Director of Marketing, Education & Library, Simon & Schuster;  Michael Rockliff, Director of  Library Sales and Marketing, Workman, Golda Rademacher, Library Marketing Manager, W. W. Norton;  Linda Hollick, Publisher, New York Review Books; and Meredith Barnes, Soho Press.


Friday, May 29

2:00 pm – 3:30 pm. AAP Annual Librarians’ Book Buzz—Part II. Jacob K. Javits Center (Room 1E14)

Hear the second installment of what book publishers are excited about for the forthcoming season, and why. The second installment will feature publishers;  Virginia Stanley, Director of Library Marketing, HarperCollins; Elenita, Chmilowski, Library Marketing Director, Perseus Books Group; Melissa Nicholas, Library Marketing Manager, Hachette Book Group, Chris Vaccari, Director, Library Marketing, Sterling; Talia Sherer, Director, Library Marketing, Macmillan; Claire Kelley, Marketing Manager, Melville House; and Julie Schaper, President, Consortium Book Distribution, and Jean Johnson, National Accounts Manager for Schools and Libraries Sourcebooks.


3:30 pm – 5 pm.  Seventh Annual Librarian Shout ‘n Share @ Book Expo.  Jacob K. Javits Center (Room 1E14), Co-sponsored by the AAP and Library Journal. Librarians gather at the close of the 2nd day of BEA to talk about their most recent discoveries on the exhibit floor, and upcoming works they are looking forward to sharing with their patrons.  Wilda Williams, Fiction Editor, Library Journal moderates this year’s Shout N Sharers: Kristi Chadwick, Advisor, Small Libraries Massachusetts Library System; Charlene Rue, Acting Director of BookOps, New York & Brooklyn Public Libraries; Jamie Watson, Collection Development Coordinator, Baltimore County Public Library; Jennifer Dayton, Collection Development Manager, Darien Library; and Robin Nesbitt, Collection Development, Columbus Public Library.

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Button Books

Did you know that Publisher Group West now proudly distributes Button Books in the USA?

Based in East Sussex, UK, Button Books (an imprint of GMC Publications) is an exciting new list of design-led children’s books which will appeal to adults as much as they do to children. The key values of Button Books are focused on impeccable design to compliment the content of each book as well as high-end print production techniques and finishes.

Button Books was launched in the Fall of 2012, beginning with a range of board and hardback gift books aimed at 0-2yrs and 2-5yrs, using the archive of French illustrator Alain Grée. Since then they have developed other products including flash cards, a height chart and some stationery. Their focus has been on the UK and they have not previously been distributed in the US or Canada.

Take a look at what you can expect to find for Spring and Fall 15!

Button Books_Page_1

Button Books_Page_2Alain Grée’s beautiful illustrations from the 1960s and 70s are known throughout the world.  With their naivety of form and bold use of colour, their charm is undeniable.  Comprising a delightful collection of board & hardback books, activity sets and flash cards, these products feature Alain Grée’s stunning archive of vintage imagery throughout.

Mibo was founded by Madeleine Rogers with the aim of creating affordable, yet beautifully designed printed homeware products. This series, designed by Madeleine, presents titles that teach children about animals and their environments. Five animals are explored in each books, with a two-page spread dedicated to each animal. Bright, appealing illustrations and fun educational rhymes make these books an ideal learning tool for adults to share with children. In the pocket at the back of each book are five paper animals that little hands will be able to pop out and create into 3D figures, simply by folding and adding a bit of glue.

Order now through Publishers Group West or your favorite wholesaler:
Phone: 1-800-788-3123 * Fax: 1-800-351-5073 * Email:

Be sure to visit Button Books at or go to

Visit PG Kids Booth 942 at BEA2015!

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Rich and Fragrant Lebanese Cuisine
Rich and Fragrant Lebanese Cuisine


 Featured Cookbook

The New York Times Food Section

Written by Melissa Clark

May 27


“A terrific and important book!” –Anthony Bourdain, host of No Reservations “Maureen’s love letter to Lebanese food and the story of her family is so rich and delicious it was hard to stop reading and start cooking. But the recipes and photos compel me to do just that, and it’s hard to know where to start: thick yogurt in olive oil, lamb with spices and herbs, warm dates, pomegranate and rose sorbet. This book is a feast from Maureen and her family table, and I can hardly wait to bring her food to mine.”

–Faith Durand, executive editor of

“What a charmer of a book. Maureen Abood brings us Lebanon on a plate, the Lebanon of her family and her imagination. Her recipes keep bringing to mind descriptors like, “deliciously sexy” and “got to do this.” Her family stories paint Lebanese life on both sides of the ocean. And the vegetable recipes alone are worth the price of admission. This is one for “The Keeper Shelf.””

–Lynne Rossetto Kasper, Host of The Splendid Table® from American Public Media

“A warm and welcoming guide to the fragrant world of Lebanese cooking. Abood writes with an American heart and a Middle Eastern soul, and she takes us on a delectable journey infused with luscious recipes, stunning images, and sweet memories.” –Louisa Shafia, author of The New Persian Kitchen

“Not nearly well known enough in this country, the rich and fragrant Lebanese cuisine finally gets this worthy representation both in the range of dishes presented and the gorgeous, mouth-watering illustrations of them.” –Mimi Sheraton, longtime food critic of The New York Times and author of 1,000 Foods to Eat Before You Die

“Maureen’s unique perspective on Lebanese cooking is richly represented in Rose Water & Orange Blossoms. It is approachable, inspiring, and simply delicious.”–Michael Solomonov, executive chef and co-owner, Zahav restaurant 

“Maureen is a special kind of cookbook author–insightful, mindful of tradition, always appreciative. Rose Water and Orange Blossoms celebrates life, family, beautiful recipes, and Lebanese (culinary) food ways. She uniquely uses charm, experience, warmth, and evocative storytelling to invite us into the seductive realm of her Lebanese table–rose water, orange blossom, pomegranate, sumac, dates, and all.” –Heidi Swanson, author of Super Natural Every Day

Edewlweiss link

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The Slippers’ Keeper from Groundwood Books

9781554984145_f44fcSchool Library Journal April Review
April. Gr 2-4–This exquisitely illustrated picture book describes the life of Joe Purdon, who devoted his life to the preservation of the showy lady’s-slipper, an orchid native to North America. When he was 13, Purdon learned about the flowers from his teacher, who told her students how rare and delicate they were because of their inability to self-pollinate and because they require a precise balance of water and sunlight. Purdon came across more Showy Lady’s-slippers growing in a wet, lowland area of his family’s farm in Eastern Ontario. Believing them to be “‘the prettiest thing this side of sunset,” he began to study their life cycle, learning how to pollinate them and how much water and sunshine they needed to grow and protecting the colonies of pink flowers from hungry animals. The book ends with Purdon as an adult, still nurturing the now thousands of plants flourishing under his care. An epilogue and a note at the end of the book describe how the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority was established in 1982 to protect the colony. Dominated by shades of green, the illustrations are elegant. The text fictionalizes somewhat, relying heavily on dialogue. Slightly on the stiff side, the writing may not resonate with readers, but the images will keep them turning pages. VERDICT A solid addition to science collections, this title introduces young readers to the concept of conservation and emphasizes that one person can make a difference.–Patricia Ann Owens, formerly with Illinois Eastern Community Colls., Mount Carmel

9781554984145_IL_4_5c923Midwest Book Review ‘Botany Shelf’ review. March 2015 issue:
“The Slippers’ Keeper” is an exquisitely illustrated true story of a boy named Joe Purdon who loved walking and exploring the Canadian woods with his dog, Laddie. On his walks he observed and learned to know many things about the plants and animals of his beloved woodlands. One special discovery that he treasured was the Showy Lady’s Slipper, which he discovered was a flower unable to pollinate itself and bloom without the help of bees or insects. The delicate wild orchid also required just the right balance of water and sunlight to thrive. Joe decided to make it his project to help Showy Lady’s Slippers to grow in the fen. This was not a project that had the full support of his father, who approved Joe’s activities only after his farm chores were done. Fortunately Joe’s mother understood he needed to pursue his special interest for pleasure in the beauty of the wild orchid. Joe studied and observed the needs of the wild orchid and persisted in his plan to aid the spread of Showy Lady’s Slippers in the fen near his farm home. Joe grew into a man who loved his work with the wild orchids, maple syrup production, and woodworking with felled trees, rather than farming. Gradually he watched his orchid colony grow and increase, just as his own family did also. Joe’s work with the preservation of the Showy Ladys’ Slipper was later preserved and honored by the Purdon Conservation Area, later the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority. “The Slippers’ Keeper” honors this amazing legacy with narrative and tender portraits of the beautiful landscape of the Showy Lady’s Slipper in eastern Ontario, Canada.


Ian Wallace has had a distinguished career as an author and illustrator of picture books, publishing such classics as Chin Chiang and the Dragon’s Dance, Boy of the Deeps, The Huron Carol, Canadian Railroad Trilogy by Gordon Lightfoot and Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling. He has won the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Award, the Mr. Christie’s Book Award, the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Award and the IODE Violet Downey Book Award. He has also been nominated for the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award and the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. Ian lives in Brookline, Massachusetts, with his wife, Deb.

The Slippers’ Keeper
Trade Cloth, Picture Book
US $18.95

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THE TRIUMPH OF SEEDS: How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History
THE TRIUMPH OF SEEDS:  How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History

“Conservation biologist Hanson’s new book showcases an even more approachable style than his 2011 Feathers. Using a personalized viewpoint derived from his backyard lab and dissertation research in Costa Rica with the almendro tree, as well as visits with specialists worldwide, he describes how seeds nourish, unite, endure, defend, and travel.”

Library Journal

“[Hanson is] jocular and entertaining in his dispensing of remarkable facts about these little vessels of life-to-be…. From high-tech, high-security seed banks bracing for climate change to the story of the gum extracted from guar seeds that is used in everything from ice cream to fracking, this upbeat and mind-expanding celebration of the might of seeds is popular science writing at its finest.”

Booklist, starred review

“Who knew that seeds could be so thrilling and dangerous? Thor Hanson is a lively storyteller, a lyrical writer, and a quick wit. The Triumph of Seeds is more than an engrossing work of natural history. It’s a compelling and highly entertaining journey, populated by scientists and historians, criminals and explorers, aviators and futurists. Following Hanson’s global voyage is the best sort of armchair travel, because it is filled with wonder, poetry, and discovery.”

—Amy Stewart, author of The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks, a New York Times Bestseller


“As he did in his phenomenal Feathers, Thor Hanson brings us the nearly incredible world of seeds in a package as graceful and elegant as they are themselves, gift-wrapped in utterly seductive stories. I cannot recall a book I was so eager to finish, that I might begin it again.”

—Robert Michael Pyle, author of Wintergreen and Mariposa Road
“If you eat seeds of any kind, you must read this book! Ecologist Hanson gives us a rich Darwinian view of how seeds came to be the most important nutritional resource for human as well as older than human species. He is at his best when we are in the field with him, learning like detectives the ‘whodunnits’ of seed dispersal. You will never look a seed in the eye again without thanking Thor.”

—Gary Paul Nabhan, Franciscan brother and author of Enduring Seeds and Food, Genes, and Culture 



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Landmark report on Ferguson policing practices from the DOJ coming this summer from The New Press

Check out the landmark report on Ferguson policing practices from the DOJ coming this summer from The New Press.

On August 9, 2014, Michael Brown, an unarmed African American high school senior, was shot by Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri. For months afterward, protestors took to the streets demanding justice, testifying to the racist and exploitative police department and court system, and connecting the shooting of Brown with the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, and other young black men at the hands of police across the country.

In the wake of these protests, the Department of Justice launched a six-month investigation, resulting in a report that Colorlines characterizes as “so caustic it reads like an Onion article” and laying bare what the Huffington Post calls “a totalizing police regime beyond any of Kafka’s ghastliest nightmares.” Among the report’s findings are that the Ferguson Police Department “Engages in a Pattern of Unconstitutional Stops and Arrests in Violation of the Fourth Amendment,” “Detain[s] People Without Reasonable Suspicion and Arrest[s] People Without Probable Cause,” “Engages in a Pattern of First Amendment Violations,” “Engages in a Pattern of Excessive Force,” and “Erode[s] Community Trust, Especially Among Ferguson’s African-American Residents.”

Contextualized here in a substantial introduction by renowned legal scholar and former NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund president Theodore M. Shaw, The Ferguson Report is a sad, sobering, and important document, providing a snapshot of American law enforcement at the start of the twenty-first century, with resonance far beyond one small town in Missouri.

“I was shocked but not that surprised . . . all of the police departments, all of the mayors and county and other officials throughout the country [need to] take a look in the mirror.”
—Colin Powell

“What the Justice Department report demonstrates is that we’re not crazy. There is a system of racial and social control in communities of color across America.”
—Michelle Alexander

“Utterly devastating.”
—Charles Blow

—Wolf Blitzer

“The scope of the racism and appalling behavior is worse than I expected.”
—Jeffrey Toobin

—Gwen Ifill

“The Department of Justice’s investigation of the Ferguson Police Department has scandalized the nation, and justly so.”
—David Graeber


The Ferguson Report: Department of Justice Investigation of the Ferguson Police Department

By The Department of Justice; Introduction by Theodore M. Shaw

July 21, 2015

$10 / Trade Paperback




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Prickly Jenny from Owlkids Books

Hello! Angela here from the PGW Berkeley marketing team.

I really want to tell you all about a book that resonates with me this week titled Prickly Jenny from Owlkids Books. The last two weeks with my almost four year old have been rather prickly! It feels like Sibylle Delacroix has written about my toddler this week except it would be titled Prickly Lilah! As a parent of a toddler I am loving this gem of a book and so does The New York Times

“No one does cranky with quite as much panache as the French. Two picture books about bad moods, both written by Francophone authors and offered in English translations for the first time, demonstrate what may be the secret. Both take an approach that many parents struggle to master: The less you fight it, the more likely it is that irritability will give way on its own to something else — sometimes, even something charming.

“Prickly Jenny,” by Sibylle Delacroix, is short, direct and small in size — befitting the proper approach to its subject. We meet Jenny, a round, rumpled toddler who “doesn’t say good morning because, really, what’s so good about it?” She won’t wear the polka-dot dress her mother picks out. She didn’t want to go to the fair with her father, so she “grumbles and drags her feet.” She even says she won’t eat ice cream for dessert — though we see her gobble it up, anyway.

Delacroix ventures into the paradoxical heart of toddler grumpiness: “Jenny says ‘Leave me alone!’ But she cries when Mommy goes away.” When she holds up her drawings, she “doesn’t want to hear ‘wow’ or ‘that’s nice!’ ” At one point she begins to crack a smile — but, we’re told, “if you fuss about it, Jenny will go back to grumbling.” The fact is, Delacroix concludes, “Jenny doesn’t know what she wants today.” That’s hard for grown-ups to accept, but it’s worth remembering, as Jenny does, that “tomorrow, when she’s bigger, it will get better.”

This wonderful little book gently suggests that maybe all a kid like Jenny needs from the people around her is a kind of warm, quiet presence. Delacroix’s drawings are soft around the edges, capturing the feeling of a child’s world that’s just a bit out of focus. She makes Jenny’s head enormous, like some giant, heavy object she must struggle to balance on narrow shoulders, which is just how a child — or anyone — carrying a load of disagreeable thoughts feels.”

The New York Times Sunday Book Review | By   – Online March 18, 2015

Prickly JennySibylle Delacroix graduated from the École de Recherché Graphique in Brussels and worked as a graphic designer for several agencies while juggling her illustration career. She now illustrates full time and lives in the Midi-Pyrénées in France.

Prickly Jenny
Author:  Sibylle Delacroix
March 17, 2015
$16.95 USD
Hardcover Picture Book
Juvenile Fiction \ Social Issues \ Emotions & Feelings
Ages 3 to 7, Grades P to 2
Owlkids Books


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Throw Like a Woman (The Story Plant)

Looking for a good book that will tide you over until Opening Day?  Check out Throw Like a Woman, a novel about a woman finding herself again after her divorce by landing on the mound as the first woman player in Major League history.

Download a digital reading copy today:

“For baseball fans who yearn for a female Jackie Robinson, reading Susan Petrone’s fun and absorbing novel THROW LIKE A WOMAN becomes a kind of prayer. ‘Please, Lord! Give talent a chance. Let this dream come true!'”
– Mary Doria Russell, author of THE SPARROW

Throw Like a Woman

By Susan Petrone

p-ISBN: 9781611881998, e-ISBN: 9781611882001

Hardcover, 336 pages, $25.95 (US & Canada)

Pub Date: March 24, 2015

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