Tag Archives: Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Kekla Magoon

Author Spotlight: Kekla Magoon

“Kekla Magoon grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana. She wrote her first novel when she was in high school. She should have known then that she was destined to be an author, but it actually took her a while longer to figure out what she wanted to do with her life. Kekla always loved books, though. Her mom read lots of books to her, and took her to the library every week so she could read and read and read. Kekla made a habit of checking out as many paperbacks as she could carry!” ~keklamagoon.com biography

Book Discussion: How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon
College Avenue Branch
Monday, October 23, at 6:00pm

Teens and Adults are invited to discuss “How It Went Down” by Kekla Magoon. A writer from the Indiana Writers Center will lead the discussion. This program is made possible by the Robert & Toni Bader Charitable Foundation through a grant to The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation. Registration is required. Please call 317-275-4320 to register.


Awards:

Coretta Scott King Honor Books:

Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe Award New Talent:

NAACP Image Award:


eBooks & eAudio:

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Use your indyPL Library Card number and PIN to check out FREE Online eBooks & eAudiobooks. Click on a book jacket & enter your Library Card number and PIN to borrow. What’s My PIN?Overdrive Logo

Shadows of SherwoodHow It Went DownInfinity RidersX: A Novel

Print Books:

Camo GirlFire in the StreetsRebellion of ThievesThe Rock and the River

More about Black History:


To learn even more about fascinating and inspiring black history makers, visit the Center for Black Literature & Culture at Central Library. The Center is dedicated to celebrating the vibrant and resilient heritage and triumphs of those born of African roots.

WeNeedDiverseBooks LogoTo get young people engaged, one of the things they need is to see themselves in books. It is important for all of us to see ourselves in books, because that encourages us to read in a different way and encourages us to write more.” ~ Dr. Jerrie Cobb Scott Founder of the African American Read-in #weneeddiversebooks

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Author Spotlight: James Whitcomb Riley

Author Spotlight: James Whitcomb Riley

The poet James Whitcomb Riley was born in Greenfield, Indiana on October 7, 1849. To give you an idea about how long ago that was, he was about 12 years old when the U.S. Civil War started.  Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell were both born around the same time.

At the time of his death on July 22, 1916, James Whitcomb Riley was a beloved figure in Indiana. He was also well known for writing in dialect. A dialect is a particular form of a language that is special to a specific region, in this case Indiana. It is similar to what we would call an accent today. When a person read his poetry, it was like listening to a neighbor. People really liked that. Many of his poems were funny. People really liked that too. Riley traveled the country giving live shows reading his poetry. In his time, he was a rock star! His death was such news it made front page headlines in major newspapers all across the country. There is an old scrapbook of the events that followed his death at The James Whitcomb Riley Home & Museum. You can look at this scrapbook online. It has all kinds of old newspaper clippings in it. One of the headlines about his funeral says, “35,000 People Pass Casket of Indiana Poet”. That is a lot of people! 

During Riley’s life people did not have radios in their homes yet. To listen to music or readings they used phonographs. In Riley’s day you had to hand crank a machine to listen to a recording. Very early ones recorded onto cylinders. Later ones recorded onto flat discs, like a CD, only larger. Today you can play a digital file of an audiobook on your phone or computer. In 1912 Riley recorded poetry readings for the Victor Talking Machine Company on one of those flat discs so that people could listen at home – an old time audiobook. We have these old Riley Recordings at IndyPL in our digital collection. James Whitcomb Riley Recordings You can listen to the man himself reading his own poetry. Lucky for you they are in a digital file now!

Mr. Riley’s most famous poems for children were and still are, “Raggedy Man,” “The Little Orphant Annie,” “When the Frost is on the Punkin,” and “The Old Swimmin’ Hole.” You can read them right now in these free eBook from IUPUI. I recommend the deliciously scary “The Little Orphant Annie.” Annie is a great storyteller! She tells the story of why you better mind your parents because “The gobble-uns’ll git you ef you don’t watch out!” To read it click on the blue book Riley Child Rhymes and then click on page 23.

Read Right Now! Free eBooks:

Riley Child RhymesThe Book of Joyous ChildrenThe Raggedy Man

Websites:

In the spirit of another beloved Hoosier, David Letterman:

Top 10 Ways to Know James Whitcomb Riley was a Rock Star of his Time:

10. His book  Rhymes of Childhood was published in 1912. Today, over 100 years later, you can easily find his book at the library or go to an online bookstore and find it for sale as a print book or an eBook. There are not very many books that are still printed from that long ago!

9. In the late 1890s he encouraged the African American poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. He wrote Dunbar a letter of recommendation that helped get his work published.

8. When Riley died, the President of the United states, Woodrow Wilson, and the Vice-President of the United States, Thomas Riley Marshall (who was from Columbia City, Indiana), both sent messages of condolence to his family. The Governor of Indiana allowed him to be laid in state at The Indiana Statehouse Rotunda so that people could come pay their respects. Until that time, only Abraham Lincoln had been honored in that way.

7. Greenfield, IN, his birthplace, and Indianapolis, IN, his home for over 20 years, fought over where he should be buried. Over Riley’s Dead Body: Indy’s Weirdest Civic Fight. Indianapolis won. He was buried at Crown Hill Cemetery in a tomb at the top of a hill, the highest point in Indianapolis. Section 61, Lot 1.

6. Both his boyhood home in Greenfield, IN and his adult home in Indianapolis, IN are museums and on the National Register of Historic Places.

5. The James Whitcomb Riley Hospital for Children was created and named in his honor in 1924. In 1955 the hospital added Camp Riley, a camp for youth with disabilities.

4. In 1940, the U.S. Postal Service issued a 10-cent stamp honoring Riley.

3. A cargo ship, the SS James Whitcomb Riley, was commissioned in 1942 during World War II.

2. There used to be a Hoosier Poet Brand of coffee, oatmeal, vegetables, cigars and more.

1. James Whitcomb Riley donated the land indyPL’s Central Library is built on. The bronze gates at the main entrance on St. Clair Street were purchased with pennies donated by children. The bronze tables on each of the iron gates say: The gates are the gift of the children of Indianapolis in loving remembrance of their friend James Whitcomb Riley

Print Books:

When the Frost is on the PunkinThe Gobble-uns'll Git You Ef You Don't Watch OutLittle Orphant AnnieHoosier Boy James Whitcomb RileyJames Whitcomb Riley Young Poet
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Author Spotlight: John David Anderson

Author Spotlight: John David Anderson

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Indianapolis’s own John David Anderson has been named the 2017 Indiana Author Award Genre Excellence Winner for Middle Grade Fiction. That’s a long way to say he won an award for writing great books – books kids like – for middle school students. Mr. Anderson is the author of several favorites, including Ms. Bixby’s Last Day, Sidekicked, Minion, Standard Hero Behavior, and The Dungeoneers. A dedicated root beer connoisseur and chocolate fiend, he lives with his wife and two kids right here in Indianapolis. You can learn more at www.johndavidanderson.org.

 

Mr. Anderson’s new book is called Posted. It’s a story about what happens when kids go old-school, using post-it notes to communicate with each other instead of texts or social media when they get their cell phones taken away!

Here are some of the many awards Mr. Anderson’s books have received:

Ms. Bixby’s Last Day

  • The Kirkus Prize 2016 Nominee, Young Readers
  • NCTE Charlotte Huck Award for Outstanding Fiction for Children 2017, Honor
  • Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2016, Middle Grade
  • The New York Times Notable Children’s Books of 2016, Middle Grade
  • New York Public Library 2016 Best Books for Kids, Fiction
  • Booklist 2016 Editors’ Choice, Books for Youth, Middle Readers, Fiction
  • ALSC Notable Children’s Books 2017, Middle Readers
  • 2016 Cybils Finalist, Middle Grade Fiction

The Dungeoneers

  • 2015 Cybils Award Finalist 

Sidekicked

  • 2013 Cybils Award Finalist 

Standard Hero Behavior

  • 2010-2011 Young Hoosier Book Award Nominee
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Happy 101st Birthday, Beverly Cleary!

Happy 101st Birthday, Beverly Cleary!

Beverly Cleary has been a presence in children’s literature since her first book, Henry Huggins, was published in 1950, more than 65 years ago! Although her last book, Ramona’s World, was published in 1999, 18 years ago, long before any of her current readers like you were born, she has continued to inspire generations of us to fall in love with Ramona, Henry Huggins, and Ralph S. Mouse.

During her long career, she has been honored with a Newbery Medal (Dear Mr. Henshaw, 1984), 2 Newbery honors (Ramona and Her Father, 1978; Ramona Quimby, Age 8, 1982), the National Book Award (Ramona and Her Mother, 1981), among many accolades, and was recognized with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal (1975) for “a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.”

Her birthday, April 12, is recognized as National Drop Everything and Read Day (D.E.A.R). So on this day give Beverly the gift she wants for her birthday, a gift that is for you too! Drop everything and READ!

Read Right Now! Download & Stream for Kids

Websites:

Drop Everything And Read150

Video:

Favorite Series from Beverly Clearly:

Henry Huggins 1. Henry Huggins
2. Henry & Beezus
3. Henry & Ribsy
4. Henry & the Paper Route
5. Henry & the Clubhouse
6. Ribsy
Beezus and Ramona 1. Beezus & Ramona
2. Ramona the Pest
3. Ramona the Brave
4. Ramona & Her Father
5. Ramona & Her Mother
6. Ramona Quimby, Age 8
7. Ramona Forever
8. Ramona’s World
The Mouse and the Motorcycle 1. The Mouse & the Motorcycle
2. Runaway Ralph
3. Ralph S. Mouse
Dear Mr Henshaw 1. Dear Mr. Henshaw
2. Strider
Ellen Tebbits 1. Ellen Tebbits
2. Otis Spofford
Emilys Runaway Imagination 1. Emily’s Runaway Imagination
2. Mitch & Amy
3. Socks
4. Muggie Maggie
FIfteen 1. Fifteen
2. The Luckiest Girl
3. Jean & Johnny
4. Sister of the Bride

One Rainy Sunday Beverly Cleary Quote

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Author Spotlight: Judy Blume

Author Spotlight: Judy Blume


Books by Judy Blume:

Are You There God It's Me MargaretFreckle JuiceIggie's HouseSuperfudgeTales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Websites:


“Stories, both real and imagined, show what girls can do. The stories of women’s lives, and the choices they made, encourage girls to think larger and bolder, and give boys and men a fuller understanding of the female experience.”

~National Women’s History Project

More about Women’s History:

 

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