1. It’s a common cliché, and it’s very subtle. In our ever-increasing commitment to include diverse characters in novels, we’ve also, at the same time, increased a stereotype ― that black kids (when they’re among an “ensemble cast”) don’t have much going on and aren’t worthy of the spotlight. In the old days they called this tokenism ― sticking a person of color into the mix for the sake of having a black face among the group. This has its disadvantages. Young readers want to know what’s in the hearts and souls that are behind those faces of color. But when we don’t give these characters the same depth as is allowed the other characters, we perpetuate the stereotype that black teens are lesser people.

    — Andrea Davis Pinkney - CBC Diversity: Diversity 101: The Sidekick Syndrome (via sdiaz101)

  2. School Library Journal has the world’s first Caldecott Medal infographic (we think).

    School Library Journal has the world’s first Caldecott Medal infographic (we think).

  3. I remember that quandary every time I read an essay about gender in Young Adult literature (which, since I teach it, is often). I see, in the ongoing conversation about Bella and Katniss, our culture pondering whether YA novels support the strong daughters we all want to raise. But as we debate ad nauseum whether, for example, Bella Swan is a dangerous role model for young women, we’ve neglected to ask the corresponding question: what does it tell young men when Edward Cullen and Jacob Black are the role models available to them? Are these barely-contained monsters really the best we can imagine?

    — 

    via the Los Angeles Review of Books - “YA and the End of Boys”

    We’re sure all of our YA peeps will be buzzing about this essay, but rather than trying to show that contemporary YA is FULL of awesome young men, we’re just going to share our list of YA books full of male protagonists.

    (via bookish)

  4. Tamora Pierce (yes, the Tamora Pierce) on a serendipitous voting AND library card procuring trip to her local library branch.

    Tamora Pierce (yes, the Tamora Pierce) on a serendipitous voting AND library card procuring trip to her local library branch.

  5. justbabel:

I will never, ever let go of these. (Taken with instagram)

    justbabel:

    I will never, ever let go of these. (Taken with instagram)

  6. 35 Going on 13 columnist Angelina Benedetti reviews John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars in her latest column.

    Green, John. The Fault in Our Stars. Dutton Juvenile. 2012. 336p. ISBN 9780525478812. $17.99.

    The release of any book by Green is eagerly anticipated by teen and adult readers alike. Drawing even more attention to his latest offering, the popular author determined to autograph all 150,000 copies of the book’s first print run, making it an Amazon best seller over a month before its publication date. Lofty expectations, and Green delivers; this story of two teens fighting end-stage cancer may be his best book to date. Hazel is alive (but depressed) thanks to a miracle drug that has bought her more time with her “lungs that suck at being lungs.” At support group she meets Augustus Waters, who has lost a leg to osteosarcoma. He is struck by her sharp wit and resemblance to Natalie Portman and invites her home to watch V for Vendetta, beginning a relationship that will take them from the ICU to Amsterdam, exploring the joys and despairs of first love when there may not be a second chance. The author’s experience as a chaplain in a children’s hospital informs the story, so that it avoids the becoming maudlin, even as Hazel’s and Gus’s every dignity is stripped away by their respective cancers. An unforgettable story with more than just two unforgettable characters.

  7. Self-censorship. It’s a dirty secret that no one in the profession wants to talk about or admit practicing. Yet everyone knows some librarians bypass good books—those with literary merit or that fill a need in their collections. The reasons range from a book’s sexual content and gay themes to its language and violence—and it happens in more public and K–12 libraries than you think.

    — From the 2009 School Library Journal article “Self-censorship is rampant and lethal.”