Tag Archives: authors

Remembering Nat Hentoff

Wendy asked me the other day if I had heard that the author Nat Hentoff died.  I didn’t realize at first that this was the same person I heard memorialized on the radio as “an outspoken advocate of free speech and a prolific jazz writer.” The old, recorded interview didn’t even mention his success as a young adult author among his other accomplishments.

Back in 1984, children at Fountaindale had an opportunity to vote for their favorite author during the Summer Reading Program. Authors were invited to write to the children and make their case for the children’s votes.  Here is Nat Hentoff’s response, on his Village Voice notepaper:

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It reads, “I am honored to have been selected as one of Fountaindale Corners’ favorite authors. Here is my campaign speech: I write, first of all, to widen my own imagination because the act of fiction is the act of constant surprise. Then, I try to surprise my readers into breaking out of their familiar responses to themselves by feeling what it is to be inside other people’s heads + vulnerabilities + strengths. I write to spread the sense of wonder at how various we all are.”

If you search his name in our catalog, some of his young adult fiction is available from another Pinnacle library. You will also see notes on many jazz albums and opinion pieces on issues important to him.

Remembering Joseph Medicine Crow

You may have seen the news yesterday about the death of Joseph Medicine Crow. He was described as “the Crow’s last war chief… an activist, an author, a Medal of Freedom recipient and a vital chronicler of the history of his tribe.” He fought in World War II and “heard stories of the Battle of Little Bighorn from people who were there.” He was the first Crow to earn a master’s degree (in anthropology), and became the tribal historian and anthropologist.

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Counting Coup: Becoming a Crow Chief on the Reservation and Beyond by Joseph Medicine Crow with Herman Viola

Couting Coup, one of his many books, won the 2008 American Indian Youth Literature Award.  Reviewers praised his autobiography for its “absorbing, humorous style” and as an “informative yet entertaining read” that “brings the past to life.”

Here are some other books available in our library system that he wrote or contributed to:

From the Heart of the Crow Country: The Crow Indians’ Own Stories by Joseph Medicine Crow (a book for adults)

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Brave Wolf and the Thunderbird story by Joe Medicine Crow; illustrations by Linda R. Martin

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The Earth Made New: Plains Indian Stories of Creation by Paul Goble; foreword by Joe Medicine Crow

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Custer’s Last Battle: Red Hawk’s Account of the Battle of the Little Bighorn, June 25, 1876 told & illustrated by Paul Goble; foreword by Joe Medicine Crow

Some writer!

https://www.npr.org/player/embed/496699113/496755024

James Herriot at 100

Author James Herriot would have been 100 years old this year.  He wrote beloved stories about his experiences as a country veterinarian.  Most of these were published as books for adults, but you can also find picture book versions and collections of stories for children.

Oscar, Cat-About-Town by James Herriot
Ruth Brown, illustrator
Nobody knows why a stray cat keeps sneaking away from his new home until he begins turning up at social events all over the village.

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James Herriot’s Treasury of Inspirational Stories for Children
illustrated bu Ruth Brown and Peter Barrett
A collection of the author’s stories for children, including “Moses the Kitten,” “The Market Square Dog,” and “Smudge, the Little Lost Lamb.”  The collection is also available as an audiobook with a slightly different title.

Roald Dahl specials

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Have you ever tried to drink a chocolate river?  You can at our Interactive Family Movie on Sunday, September 18.  When you enter,  you will receive a goody bag with treats to enjoy during the movie.

Saturday, September 24 is our big Roald Dahl Turns 100 Celebration.  You can stop in any time from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for special activities:

You can also bring (or buy) a lunch and enjoy a movie at 12:30 that day!

No registration required; all Roald Dahl programs are drop in to the limit of the room.

Remembering a great writer

August 19 marks the 80th anniversary of the death of poet and playwright Federico García Lorca during the Spanish Civil War.  Here are a few books in Spanish and English for introducing the writer and his work to children:

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Federico García Lorca by Georgina Lázaro León
This picture book biography in Spanish was awarded a Pura Belpré Author Honor in 2010.
Poetic text recounts the childhood of the noted Spanish poet, including his love for the nature and folklore of his native Andalusia, his introduction to music and literature at home, and his health problems.

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You’re on! Seven Plays in English and Spanish, selected by Lori Marie Carlson
This selection includes “The girl who waters basil and the very inquisitive prince” in English and “La nina que riega la albahaca y el principe pregunton” in Spanish.

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Tomie dePaola’s Book of Poems
An illustrated collection of poems by various authors includes “Cancion Tonta” (Silly Song) and “Caracola” (Snail) in both Spanish and English.

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A Family of Poems: My Favorite Poetry for Children, selected by Caroline Kennedy
An anthology of poems includes a different interpretation of “Caracola,” titled “Seashell,” in English.

75 years of Lynne Cheney

Former Second Lady Lynne Cheney turns 75 today.  Did you know that she has written a number of books on American history for children?

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A is for Abigail: An Almanac of Amazing American Women
“Each letter of the alphabet is represented by an important woman in the history of the United States, as well as others in her same field of accomplishment.”

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America: A Patriotic Primer
“Each letter of the alphabet is represented by important people, ideas, and events in the history of the United States.”

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A Time for Freedom: What Happened When in America
Browse your way through American history with facts, trivia, and quotations.

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We the People: The Story of Our Constitution
“In May 1787 delegates from across the country–including George Washington, James Madison, and Benjamin Franklin–gathered in Philadelphia and, meeting over the course of a sweltering summer, created a new framework for governing: the Constitution of the United States.”

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When Washington Crossed the Delaware: A Wintertime Story for Young Patriots
“Best-selling author Lynne Cheney tells the dramatic story of the military campaign that began on Christmas night in 1776.”