Author Archives: Mattlibrarian

Rapping up Darwin & Evolution

Worth publicising in the Teen areas in Libraries, I am hoping to make it down to the London show.

THE DEVIL IN DOVER
THE RAP GUIDE TO EVOLUTION

Darwin Bicentenary 2009

An evening programme to celebrate the Life, Work and Legacy of
Charles Robert Darwin (1809-1882)

Monday, 9 February: Chemistry Lecture Theatre, Lensfield Road, Cambridge CB2 1EW 7.30pm

Tuesday, 10 February: AV Hill Lecture Theatre, UCL, Gower St, London WC1 7.30pm

Thursday 12 February: Medical School, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, B15 2TT 6pm

Friday 13 February: The Hive, 5 Belmont, Shrewsbury, SY1 1TE 7.30pm

Organised by Professor Mark Pallen, Author of The Rough Guide to Evolution

Sponsored by the British Council

Download the flyer here: darwintourflyer.pdf

Spine Breakers Live

17 February 2009 / The Sage Gateshead / Gateshead Quays

The teen team at spinebreakers.co.uk invite all teens aged from 13 to 18 to The Sage Gateshead for a day of creative workshops.

Sign up for one of the following:

• learn book jacket design skills with a professional designer

create a short story – practical tips on creative writing with an experienced editor

produce multi-media content for your favourite book – videos, soundtracks & photo stories

PLUS hear Joe Dunthorne, bestselling debut author of Submarine, reading from his book and discussing life, the universe and everything.

Tickets: £5
Times: 9.45 arrival for a 10am start till 4.30pm

Location: The Sage Gateshead, St Mary’s Square, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 2JR

Tickets are limited so BOOK NOW at www.thesagegateshead.org
or Ticket office: 0191 443 4661

For more information visit: www.spinebreakers.co.uk

The Graveyard Book wins 88th Newbery Award

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman has become the 88th title to win the Newbery Award for Children’s Literature.

For the full story go here

For Mr Gaiman’s response to the news you can read his blog.

Teen Librarian Monthly January 2009

The January issue of TLM is availalbe to download here.

Mad Dog Moonlight by Pauline Fisk

This story revolves around a young boy who has been found wandering the Welsh countryside, with only his baby brother and his ffon, a walking stick with a mysterious carving on the top, in his arms. He has no memory of where he has come from except for the name that his parents have given him – Mad Dog Moonlight.
Despite being fostered into a loving home (and renamed Ryan Lewis), Mad Dog finds it hard to adjust to his new ‘normal’ lifestyle. As time goes by he comes to realise that he is not the same as other children as the magic of nature surrounds him and follows him wherever he goes. Soon, both the open road and the persistent call of the mysterious and sometimes sinister Plynlimon Mountain, leads Mad Dog on a wild journey into the secrets of his past, which finally provides him with the answer to his biggest question of all….who he really is.
There was something rather familiar about this book and storyline- although I couldn’t quite pin it down. At first I found the plot rather slow but this sped up in the second half of the book which I found much more exciting and purposeful. This obviously is a shame as it might put off readers who aren’t willing to persist through the first half. The concept of the book was quite unusual in terms of the blend of fantasy into reality and ‘everyday life.’ I also liked the fact that Fisk incorporated myth and Celtic history and culture intensely into the plot, however, I felt a little confused about her focus.
Whilst obviously a theme of the story was about self-discovery and maturation, the magical aspect of the story grated a little with the more well-developed aspects of the text such as daily life in the school-place, the experience of a foster-family and even the landscape and weather of Wales! Personally, I think that if this aspect of the story was given more depth or put into a clearer context in relation to the characters then it would make for a more comfortable read. Nevertheless, I did enjoy this book very much and found Fisk’s description of the Welsh landscape particularly beautiful, therefore if I were to rate this book I would still give it a solid 7 out of 10.

Reviewer: JP

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Read the full-text of Coraline online (including Dave McKean’s illustrations).

A discussion guide for Coraline is available here if you would like to discuss it in a reading group.

Something Old, Something New – a WriteAway Conference

From picture books to novels, poetry to comics, oral stories to classic film, this event will assert the importance of values and quality texts for teaching literacy and nourishing young minds. Speakers include John Agard, Anthony Browne, Emma Chichester Clark, Gabrielle Cliff-Hodges, Jonathan Douglas, Nikki Gamble, Prue Goodwin, Martin Jenkins, Nicolette Jones, Jane Ray, Chris Riddell, Morag Styles and Kate Wilson.

An exciting range of practical workshops will present creative approaches to teaching with texts. Presenters include Marilyn Brocklehurst, Darren Coult, Pam Dix, Mel Gibson, Samantha Hardy, Phil McDermott, Cliff McNish, Emma Madden, Sarah Mussi, David Reedy, Kathryn Saeb-Parsy, Luke Slater, Sara Stanley, Mat Tobin and Emma Vieceli.

Date: Friday 22 May 2009

Time: 9.00am – 4.30pm (Registration from 8.30)

Venue: University of London

Fee £150 (£120 before 28th February) Book early to avoid disappointment. We were fully booked a month before the last conference.

PROGRAMME

8.30 Registration (tea and coffee)

9.00 Something Old, Something New: Nikki Gamble

9.30 The Relevance of Classic Texts: Jonathan Douglas, Director National Literacy Trust; Kate Wilson, MD Scholastic UK; Gabrielle Cliff-Hodges, University of Cambridge

10.10 Poetry: addressing the concerns of the Ofsted survey Morag Styles, University of Cambridge

10.40 Martin Jenkins and Chris Riddell: Writing and illustrating Don Quixote and Gulliver’s Travels

11.10 Coffee

11.40 Workshop A choices

12.40 Lunch at the Royal National Hotel

1.40 Workshop B choices

2.50 Interpreting Hansel and Gretel through illustration: Anthony Browne, Jane Ray, Emma Chichester-Clark chaired by Prue Goodwin

3.40 John Agard: Young Inferno

4.10 Closing words

4.15 Tea and book signing

5.00 Close

Workshop A choices

* Universal Stories: approaches to teaching the old epics
* Fairy Tales and Philosophy
* Approaching classic stories through comics and graphic novels
* Choosing texts for the class and school library
* Storybox: an approach to making stories through traditional
motifs
* Telling, reading and writing ghost stories

Workshop B choices

* Shakespeare and Manga
* Classics? Whose Classics? Challenging the literary canon
* From oral storytelling to storywriting
* Teaching Science Fiction through classic films
* Bringing the past to life: historical fiction, costume and artefacts

For more information and to download the conference flier click here

Tintin at 80

Tintin & Snowy

Tintin & Snowy

This Saturday the 10th January marks the 80th anniversary of Tintin‘s first appearance in Le Petit Vingtième.

Tintin has remained consistently popular with children, teens and adults for the past 80 years. The 80th anniversary comes amidst news that the long-awaited Tintin film (to be directed by Steven Spielberg and a script written by Doctor Who scribe Steven Moffat) is due to be released in 2010.

While the filming is only due to start in February, the film once released may be used as a taster of Tintin to get reluctant readers interested in trying the books themselves.

Teen Librarian Monthly December

The December edition of Teen Librarian Monthly is available to download here

This month’s edition contains information on Leeds Central Library’s Tokyopop ReCon event, Northern Ireland’s Libraries have been running Manga and Fashion Comic workshops, groupthing launches in January and 2008 saw the release of a number of movies that are based on YA Literature.

Lastly, the Eight Questions With… author interview is with Sam Enthoven author of The Black Tattoo and TIM Defender of the Earth

Enticing teenagers into the Library

Enticing teenagers into the library by:  Clare Snowball Faculty of Media, Society and Culture, Curtin University of Technology, Perth, Australia

Click on the title for an excellent and informative article on enticing teens into the library by Clare Snowball.