Category Archives: Texas Librarians

TWO starred reviews for STUCK IN THE STONE AGE! (from Publisher’s Weekly and Kirkus)

The first review of STUCK IN THE STONE AGE is in, and Publisher’s Weekly thinks it’s worth your time!

“…this two-for-one tale is as smart as it is entertaining…”

“Jam-packed with both writing advice and jokes…”

“…this madcap tale also serves as an instruction manual for children thinking of writing their own books…”

Check out the full starred review here!

Learn more about the book here! 

AND OH, HEY, LOOK: a second review just came in from Kirkus, who also gave it a star! You can read the full review here, or just enjoy this fancy graphic the publisher created to highlight a quote from it:

If you’re a kid (or know a kid) who either loves to laugh OR has any interest in creating stories of your own, you might really dig this book. It comes out on March 6th, and you can preorder it at Powell’s, IndieboundBarnes&Noble, iBooksBooks-A-Million, or Amazon.


Posted in Best Adventure Books, Best Middle Grade Books, Best Middle Grade Series, Creative Writing, Funniest Middle Grade Books, Funny Middle Grade Books, Humor Books for Kids, Reluctant Readers, School Librarians, Stuck in the Stone Age, Texas Librarians | Leave a comment

Endangered Authors Tour Diary, Day 9

Cincinnati, Atlanta, Mobile, Miami, and Houston, I have bad news: none of you are as cool as Austin.

Don’t take this personally. It’s hard to be as cool as Austin! Just ask Seattle (nice try, Seattle! You had a good run there in the ’90s).

We got in a little on the late side, but thanks to the motivational efforts of Adam and Jacqueline, we piled into a cab and made the trek from our hotel-in-the-lonely-shadow-of-the-interstate to the South Congress neighborhood, where we had fantastic Tex-Mex at Guero’s…IMG_0451

…then stepped across the street to catch the last half of the Peterson Brothers’ set at the Continental Club… IMG_0452

…after which we all realized we were exhausted, so we packed it in. But not before I took this picture, because in Austin, EVEN THE BATHROOM WALLS ARE COOLER THAN I AM:IMG_0454

After an early wake-up call, we headed to Mills Elementary. You know how they say everything’s bigger in Texas? That’s DEFINITELY true of their elementary school audiences:IMG_0458

Great bunch of kids at Mills Elementary! Only about half of them are in that shot, because my camera doesn’t have a wide-angle lens.

Then it was on to Kiker Elementary, where super-librarian Zonia Smith and her crew greeted us with these:IMG_0459

This is the first time a flower has ever been constructed from my face, unless it’s happened before and I suppressed the memory. All four of us posed with our floral doppelgängers, but only Jacqueline looked cute doing it:IMG_0463

The kids at Kiker were awesome, and there were a LOT of them:IMG_0469

Now we’re headed for a three-day stand in the Chicago suburbs, a mere 110 miles from my hometown of Freeport, Illinois. Which is exciting!

Except that we’re not actually going to make it out there this time around.

See you on Skype in a couple of weeks, Freeport! Looking forward to it.

Posted in Appearances, Endangered Authors Tour, Texas Librarians | 1 Comment

Endangered Authors Tour Diary, Day 8

Houston, Texas! Not a lot of jokes in this installment, because the woman sitting next to me on the flight out wouldn’t quit talking long enough for me to write them.

But there were a LOT of great kids in Houston. We spent the morning at West University Elementary, home of thoroughly awesome librarian Kelly Russell (whose husband, Glen, owes me an email) and a few hundred of the best audience members we’ve encountered yet. Here they are listening to Adam explain how a road-worn copy of the original Grimm’s Fairy Tales inspired his bestselling A Tale Dark and Grimm:IMG_1933

Here they are gazing in awe at Curtis’s transformation of Bob the Builder into a werewolf:IMG_1943

Then it was on to Bunker Hill Elementary, where we were treated to lunch with not only awesome librarian Tammy Holley but also the phenomenal Cathy Berner of Blue Willow Bookshop (where you can currently get signed copies of all our books).

And the kids at Bunker Hill were the best:IMG_0446

See the shaved heads? They did that as part of a fundraiser for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, which raises money for childhood cancer research.

Kids don’t get better than that. No joke.

Posted in Appearances, Endangered Authors Tour, Texas Librarians | 1 Comment

Texas librarians are the best

Just got back from the Tweens Read Book Festival in Houston, Texas, where I had the rare privilege of seeing six hundred kids lose their minds in the presence of kidlit superstars Heather Brewer (The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod) and Rachel Renee Russell (The Dork Diaries).

It was also great meeting and/or catching up with the likes of Amy Ignatow (The Popularity Papers), Tommy Greenwald (Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading), Trent Reedy (Stealing Air), E.J. Patten (The Hunter Chronicles: Return to Exile), and Stefan Bachmann (The Peculiar).

But that’s not why I’m posting. I’m posting about the cupcake.

The cupcake that reproduced the Deadweather and Sunrise book cover in frosting:

And not just the cupcake. Oh, no. The cupcake was just the deliciously frosted, red-velvet tip of the iceberg.

There was also a glazed tile drink coaster, also hand-crafted with a reproduction of the Deadweather book cover:

And then there was the hand-knitted cup cozy.

I don’t have a picture of that one, but go ahead and conjure up a hand-knitted cup cozy in your mind’s eye.

Then make it much nicer.

Nicer still.

Even nicer than that…

Okay, now you’ve got it. It was that nice.

All of these things were gifts, hand-made by Texas librarians for no other reason than they are really, really nice people, and love books, and have amazing cupcake-making, tile-glazing, and cozy-knitting skills.

And they created these incredibly touching, personalized gifts for TWENTY-ONE DIFFERENT AUTHORS.

Thank you, Texas librarians! I am in awe of you.

The kids were pretty cool, too. But honestly, I’m not sure they realize just how good they have it librarian-wise.

Posted in Appearances, Chronicles of Egg, Texas Librarians | 3 Comments