six bookish bites on a thursday

1. Heartfelt Congratulations to Kate Coombs on winning the 2013 Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award for Water Sings Blue (Chronicle Books, 2012), her first published book of children’s poetry, masterfully illustrated by Meilo So!

water cover

Water Sings Blue was also a 2012 Cybils Finalist and has earned a veritable galaxy of bright and shiny *starred reviews* and other well deserved accolades. The week it was released last Spring, Kate dropped by Alphabet Soup to tell us more about the book. At the time, I was so blown away by this stunner that I really wanted it to win the LBH Poetry Award — and now it has! *happy dance*

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2. Speaking of the Cybils, I am equally thrilled that Laura Purdie Salas’s BookSpeak (Clarion, 2011) recently won the 2012 Cybils Poetry Award!

bookspeak cover

Since the time we celebrated this perky, quirky, fun collection (charmingly illustrated by Josée Bisaillon) on its pub day, BookSpeak went on to win the Minnesota Book Award (squee!) as well as many other very cool honors (NCTE Notable Book, Bank Street Best Books, Eureka! Gold Medal, Librarians’ Choice, et. al.). We congratulate Laura again on winning this year’s Cybils and are only too happy to don top hat and tails for another happy dance🙂.

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3. Looking for a fun and delicious challenge to ward off cabin fever? Why not enter Playing by the Book’s 2nd Annual International Edible Book Festival?


This online competition is open to anyone, with or without a blog — children, parents, authors, illustrators, booksellers, librarians, families, bakers. All are invited to create an edible book based on a children’s book in any language. This year’s Festival patron is British author/illustrator Bruce Ingman, and the deadline for submissions is March 20, 2013. Click here for full details and also check out Playing by the Book’s Pinterest board for ideas and inspiration.

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4. If you’re on Facebook or Twitter, you probably already know about The Niblings, a new children’s literature blog consortium representing Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast (Jules Danielson), A Fuse #8 Production (Betsy Bird), Nine Kinds of Pie (Philip Nel), and 100 Scope Notes (Travis Jonker). I like being able to nosh on the tasty links and kidlit news served up by all four of these powerhouse bloggers at the same table.🙂

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women's history month (2)500

5. Can you believe tomorrow’s the first day of March already? That means it’ll be Women’s History Month! Check in each day at the Kidlit Celebrates Women’s History Month blog for essays, book reviews and commentaries from authors, illustrators, and kidlit bloggers. This year’s theme is “Women Inspiring Innovation Through Imagination: Celebrating Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.” This site is a great resource for those interested in both new and older books for young people focusing on notable women throughout history.

6. Finally, Children’s Book Week will be here before we know it (May 13-19, 2013). Brian Selznick designed this year’s snazzy poster,


and Grace Lin created this gorgeous bookmark:

Can you find the hidden letters that spell “Reading”? (click to enlarge)

Grace recently discussed its backstory on her blog. Details about how to send for your free poster(s) and download your bookmarks are here and here.

Now, help yourself to a cup of hot chocolate and some cookies.🙂


Happy Thursday!


Copyright © 2013 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

22 thoughts on “six bookish bites on a thursday

  1. WOW on all these great bookish bites! Thank you for sharing (as always)! I must get the ocean poetry book – it’s calling to me. And I love everything else you shared – I won’t be entering the edible book contest but I can’t wait to see the entrants/winners! You’ll blog it, yes?😉 xo


    1. You’ll love Water Sings Blue. Such a gorgeous book!

      Zoe at Playing by the Book will post a gallery of all the entries. I’ll be sure to share the link🙂.


    1. If you haven’t already, “like” the Niblings Page on FB — they serve up a steady diet of kidlit news and links to posts from all four of their blogs. Pretty much covers all the bases🙂.


  2. It took me a WORRYINGLY long time to find the A in Grace’s illustration. I was DETERMINED by the time I realized I’d spent five minutes scanning the thing! She’s good!

    A lot of gorgeousness here, making me eager to fling open the doors and let some sun and light and color inside.


  3. It’s an amazing basket of online delights, Jama. I have both poetry books and love the uniqueness of each one. All the other things you’ve shared are good too. I love looking at all the book cakes, and order bookmarks from the Book Council each year. The poster is wonderful too. Thanks!


    1. Yes, aren’t those book cakes so much fun? Such creative people. I especially love this year’s bookmark. Grace outdid herself🙂.


      1. My mom makes gingerbread houses that she enters in contests. She helped my sister and I make them too. I won second place once.🙂 I am going to ask her if we can make a gingerbread book!😀


  4. My cup overfloweth with all these goodies! (And I need to catch up on some of your past posts, too.) So thrilled for Kate and for Laura – two deserving works for sure. Thanks for sharing all of this yumminess!


  5. So many lovely things to enjoy about this post. I just included/recommended Water Sings Blue for Project Splash! Asia – a bibliography that we’re working on to be launched in time for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content this year, plus it’s International Year of Water Cooperation as well (or something of the sort). I just ‘liked’ the Facebook page of The Niblings.🙂 What a powerhouse group indeed. And Children’s Book Week! Sounds like something that we shouldn’t miss for the world!🙂


    1. Oh, happy to hear you included Water Sings Blue in your bibliography! Perfect choice🙂. The Niblings is definitely a good thing. Love all the links they share each day. Children’s Book Week is fun — I always look forward to seeing which books all the kids vote for.


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