Monday, October 18, 2010

BBF for Kids

As an elementary school librarian, I, of course, found myself drawn the sessions for kids at the second annual Boston Book Festival.

At promptly 10:00AM I arrived at the "Fun with Fancy Nancy" session with Fancy Nancy author, Jane O'Connor, and illustrator, Robin Preiss Glasser. Everyone was dressed especially fancy in hot pink feather boas and sparkly rhinestone tiaras. Jane and Robin read Nancy's newest adventure "Fancy Nancy and the Fabulous Fashion Boutique" and it was a real hit!

Seeing and meeting authors and illustrators (the faces behind the books)is so exciting for me as an adult, I can only imagine how neat the kids think it is to meet a "real live author."

In the afternoon, I attended the Kids' Keynote, where Jeff Kinney was promoting his newest "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" book "The Ugly Truth." I was worried about this keynote at first because I was not sure what to expect, but it was actually really interesting. Again, it was great to see the face behind the books, but Jeff Kinney focused much of his talk on how the Diary books came to be, and that was actually quite interesting.

Some fun facts:
**Greg Heffley will be making a debut appearance in this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
**Jeff Kinney lives in Natick, MA, and works full time downtown Boston on the online site for kids, Poptropica.
**Originally "Diary" was supposed to be a novel for adults in one volume. Jeff never thought of it as a kids' book. He says he decided to write and draw it like a middle school boy because that is the extent of his artisitic talent. If he couldn't draw better than a middle schooler, then he would write as one!
**Jeff began releasing "Diary" online one page at a time, like a comic strip (which I thought was an interesting idea). It makes me wonder how the story changes for the reader in paginated installments, rather than a whole book at a time.

So, readers look for "The Ugly Truth" on bookshelves if you are just dying to know if Greg and Rowley's friendship can last, and if you can't wait to see the ugliness of puberty rearing its head in Greg Heffley's world.

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