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Entries for 'Heidi Estrin'


Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee member Barbara Krasner has created an expert-packed workshop to guide Jewish children's writers in new directions with guest faculty and AJL member Linda Silver, author of Best Jewish Books for Children and Teens, to help. The workshop will take place at the homeplace of the Founders of Highlights for Children near Honesdale, Pennsylvania, May 15-18, 2011.

Additional guest faculty includes Margery Cuyler, publisher, Marshall Cavendish Children’s Books and its new Jewish imprint, Shofar Books; Ruth Katcher, Egmont editor-at-large; Natalie Blitt, expert on Jewish children’s literature and former program director and book selection committee chair, The PJ Library; Debra Hess, Senior Editor, Highlights for Children; and Laurel Snyder, author of Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to Be Kosher and Penny Dreadful.

Find complete information at http://www.highlightsfoundation.org/pages/current/FWsched_jewishThemed_11.html.
jbcThanks to Linda K. Wertheimer for hosting this month's Jewish Book Carnival over at Jewish Muse! She has gathered interesting posts about Purim, faith, reading recommendations, and by luck, multiple reviews of David Grossman's To the End of the Land.

Follow the links! Read the posts! Leave lots of comments! And watch for April's Jewish Book Carnival at The Jewish Book Council.
PRESS RELEASE

For more information, contact:
Daniel Scheide
dscheide@fau.edu

2011 Judaica Reference and Bibliography Awards Announced by Association of Jewish Libraries
For immediate release

The Research Libraries, Archives, and Special Collections Division of the Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL) is very pleased to announce the winners of its 2011 Judaica Reference and Bibliography Awards.

Reference

In the reference category, the winner is The Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, published by Brill. Edited by Dr. Norman Stillman of the University of Oklahoma, this 5-volume encyclopedia is the first English-language reference that deals with a part of Jewish history that is obscure and inaccessible for many readers. The Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World opens a new window into this world and will inevitably generate more research and interest in the field. An online version is currently available as well. More information on the Encyclopedia can be found at http://www.brill.nl/default.aspx?partid=227&pid=26005.

An honorable mention has been awarded to The Eerdman’s Dictionary of Early Judaism, edited by John J. Collins and Daniel C. Harlow. It is an essential reference in a field of study that has rapidly expanded in recent decades. More information on the Dictionary can be found at http://www.eerdmans.com/shop/product.asp?p_key=9780802825490.

Bibliography

In the bibliography category, the winner is The Bibliography of Jews in the Islamic World, published by Brill. Edited by María Angeles Gallego, Heather Bleaney and Pablo García Suárez, this bibliography is an important contribution to the study of Jews in the Islamic World due to its thematic and geographical scopes, especially considering the difficulties in covering such a diverse field and multitude of languages. More information on the Bibliography can be found at http://www.brill.nl/product_id31220.htm.

Thanks to Our Sponsors

We would like to thank Dr. Greta Silver of New York City and Eric Chaim Kline of Los Angeles, who respectively sponsor the annual Judaica Reference and Bibliography Awards. The 2011 awards will be presented at the AJL 46th Annual Convention banquet, which will take place on Tuesday evening, June 21, 2011 at the Marriott Montréal Château Champlain in Montréal, Québec.

For more information about AJL's Judaica Reference & Bibliography Awards, including past winners, please visit http://jewishlibraries.org/ajlweb/awards/ref_and_bib.htm.

Awards Committee

The Reference & Bibliography Awards Committee includes Michlean Amir (United States Holocaust Memorial Museum), Yoram Bitton (Columbia University), Rachel Leket-Mor (Arizona State University), Daniel Rettberg (Hebrew Union College, Cincinnati), Pinchas Roth (Hebrew University), Rachel Simon (Princeton University), and Daniel Scheide, chair (Florida Atlantic University).

About the Association of Jewish Libraries

The Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL) promotes Jewish literacy through enhancement of libraries and library resources and through leadership for the profession and practitioners of Judaica librarianship. The Association fosters access to information, learning, teaching and research relating to Jews, Judaism, the Jewish experience and Israel. Visit AJL at jewishlibraries.org.

10:00AM to 3:00PM - SUNDAY, APRIL 3, 2011



Featured Speakers:


Sid Jacobson was editor in chief at Harvey Comics, where he created Richie Rich, and was the executive editor at Marvel Comics. His collaborations with illustrator Ernie Colon include the fascinating 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation, and the new illustrated biography of Anne Frank entitled, Anne Frank: The Anne Frank House Authorized Graphic Biography.

William J. Rubin is the executive editor of Nachshon Press and the chief architect of the National Jewish Book Award winner, Homeland: The Illustrated History of the State of Israel.

Barry Deutsch is the 2011 Sydney Taylor Award winner for Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword.

Anastasia Betts is a well-known education professional with an expertise in graphic literature.

10:00 AM Registration and Bagels
10:30 AM Questions and Answers about graphic literature with authors Sid Jacobson, Barry Deutsch and William Rubin
12:00 PM Buffet Lunch with special presentation by Sydney Taylor Award winner Barry Deutsch
1:15 PM History of graphic literature for children with Anastasia Betts
2:30 PM Literature marketplace and autographing by local children's literature authors

Manuscript consultations available

Conference will be held at American Jewish University,
15600 Mulholland Dr., Los Angeles, CA


Sponsored by Sinai Temple Blumenthal Library, Association of Jewish Libraries, AJLSC, and American Jewish University


For reservations and information call Susan Dubin at (818) 886-6415, or send email to Lisa Silverman, lsilverman at sinaitemple dot org.


Registration: $55 (includes lunch); $45 for AJL members, and $45 for a manuscript consult.

The Association of Jewish Libraries is delighted to announce the winners of the 2011 Life Membership and Fanny Goldstein Merit Awards, to be presented at the AJL Annual Convention in Montreal, Quebec, Canada in June 2011.

Pearl Berger, Benjamin Gottesman Librarian and Dean of Libraries, Yeshiva University, New York, NY is the 2011 recipient of the Association’s Life Membership Award. Life Membership is granted in recognition of outstanding leadership and professional contributions to the Association and to the profession of Jewish librarianship.

Etta D. Gold, Library Director, Temple Beth Am, Miami, Florida will receive the Fanny Goldstein Merit Award for 2011. The Fanny Goldstein Merit Award, named for the librarian, social activist and founder of National Jewish Book Month, is bestowed in recognition of loyal and ongoing contributions to the Association and to the profession of Jewish librarianship.

Elizabeth F. Stabler
Chair
Life Member and Fanny Goldstein Awards Committee
Facebook members can easily keep up with AJL's doings by visiting the AJL Facebook page at facebook.com/jewishlibraries and clicking the Like button. If you already "like" AJL on Facebook, you should be receiving our status updates in your Facebook news feed (on your "wall").

If you have not been seeing AJL's status updates in your news feed lately, it's because when Facebook switched to the "new profile" (the one with your photos displayed across the top), they also switched to a setting to show ONLY posts from people or pages you had been interacting with recently.

If you enjoy reading what AJL has to say (even if you don't always want to leave a comment), you can easily ensure that you get all our updates. Here's how: Scroll down to the bottom of the news feed on your Home page and click on "Edit options" on the bottom right (as seen in the image below)  click on "Show posts from" and change the setting to "All of your friends and pages." That way you won't miss announcements about AJL events and other Jewish book and library news!

Posted in: News
Montreal

Ready-set-go! Get out your passports and cash in your air miles because it's time to book your travel and hotel reservations for June 19 -22, 2011 in Montreal! All AJL Convention 2011 registration and preliminary program information isnow available online. Early bird registration deadline is April 10. To receive the AJL Convention Hotel rate you must book before May 20. Please check out the AJL website for more information:

Click here for full convention information.

Click here for the registration form, which you will need to print and mail in with your check.
Posted in: Convention
jbcWelcome to the February 2011 edition of the Jewish Book Carnival, a monthly event where bloggers who blog about Jewish books can meet, read and comment on each others’ posts.

This month, the Carnival is hosted by The Boston Bibliophile and you can find the post here.

The carnival was started by Heidi Estrin and Marie Cloutier to build community among bloggers and blogs who feature Jewish books. It runs every month on the 15th. The Carnival headquarters is here.

The Jewish Book Carnival has a GoodReads page, where we host discussions and more. Whether or not you’re participating, we hope you’ll stop by, join and take part!

If you’d like to participate, either to host or contribute a link, send me an email at heidi@cbiboca.org and I’ll get you hooked up on the particulars. We are actively looking for hosts for May 2011 and beyond.

Feel free to download and save the logo, and use it on your blog posts or sidebar. Please do not link directly to the picture.

In the mean time, visit The Boston Bibliophile for this month’s carnival and don’t forget to check out the many great participating bloggers!
Hello Safranim, here are this week’s Judaica links of interest. I'll be trying to post the link roundups earlier in the week in order to give you more time to explore them. From here on out, I’ll also be archiving all of these links under the tag “ajl_links” in Delicious. If you want to see them, just go to the www.delicious.com and type the query “ajl_links” in the search box. More on this next week…  Bob

World War, 1939-1945, German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection
Correspondences available from various concentration camps. "More than 2000 correspondences were scanned and the images are in jpg format. Images are available for screenshow or download (by way of Blog for IST 677: Creating, Managing & Preserving Digital Assets 2010).

Flickr accidentally nukes user's 4,000 photos: Makes you think twice about the viability of preserving your pictures and other personal content online.

Selections from Three Faiths Exhibit at NYPL. You can also watch a few videos on the making of parchment and ink as well as the scribal arts by linking to videos from the main page here. If you're in the NYC area, try to go see this great exhibit before it closes on February 27th.

Jewish Life in America, 1654-1954: “Jewish Life in America will enable you to explore the history of Jewish communities in America from the arrival of the first Jews in the 17th century right through to the mid-20th century…This treasure trove of material provides digital images of collections from the American Jewish Historical Society in New York. All of the typescript and printed material is full-text searchable.” (by way of Michelle Chesner’s Jewish Studies at CUL Blog).

Extensive Collections from the Center for Jewish History: I was fortunate to have had the opportunity this week to interview Andrea Buchner (director of the Gruss Lipper Digital Lab) for one of my classes. If you’ve never been to the catalog, take a look now. This is a gigantic (and FREE) repository of Judaica artifacts which includes all different types of media formats.
Posted in: Link Round-Up
Today is the final day, the "grand finale" if you will, of the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour. We hope you've been enjoying the interviews with our gold and silver medalists, and that you'll continue to follow their work.

Don't forget, in addition to these medalists we've featured in the blog tour, we've also got lots of fine books on this year's Notables list. Be sure to check out those books too; here's a PDF listing every book recognized by the awards committee for 2011.

Here are the last two stops on our blog tour. Enjoy!

OnceOnce is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Teen Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Morris Gleitzman at The Fourth Musketeer with blogger Margo Tanenbaum.

Here's a teaser:
Margo: Could you also comment on why you prefer to call Once and its sequels novels about friendship, rather than novels about the Holocaust?

Morris: My starting point for these books, even before I decided to set them against the Holocaust, was friendship.  I've long been interested in how young people today feel growing up in a world that increasingly seems to be the product of the worst of our human tendencies.  I like to write stories that don't shy away from that worst, but which also never lose sight of the best we're capable of.  And I think loving friendships are where most of us get to show our best.

Read more...

Blogger Barbara KrasnerFinally, we have a wrap-up of the Blog Tour with a virtual panel featuring various winners over at The Whole Megillah with blogger Barbara Krasner.

Here's a teaser:
Barbara: What trends do you see coming our way?

Kristina Swarner: I’ve been approached about electronic books more often lately, and have been thinking about ways to make illustrations move or interact with the readers.
Dana Reinhardt: It’s tough out there for writers of realistic fiction. But thanks to organizations like the Association of Jewish Libraries, sometimes these smaller books get attention and ultimately find their audience.
Sarah Gershman: I see more of an openness to talking about G-d, particularly in books aimed at both affiliated and unaffiliated families.

Read more...

To learn more about the Sydney Taylor Book Award, please visit the Association of Jewish Libraries. You can hear podcasts of past winners receiving their awards at the AJL convention at jewishlibraries.org/podcast.

Thanks for reading the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour!
Welcome back to the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour! We've got three more amazing interviews for you today.

Kristina SwarnerKristina Swarner is the illustrator of two books recognized in the Younger Readers Category this year! She illustrated Gathering Sparks by Howard Schwartz (Sydney Taylor Book Award Winner) as well as Modeh Ani by Sarah Gershman (Sydney Taylor Honor Book).

Read an interview with Kristina at The SCBWI Children's Market Blog with blogger Alice Pope.

Here's a teaser:
Alice: Your style is so soft and beautiful--it has an ethereal quality. Will you tell us about your technique?

Kristina: I begin with a black and white linoleum print that helps me get the positive and negative shapes and the underlying texture. Then I go over it with watercolor and colored pencil. I try to leave the white of the paper where I can, so things like stars really glow.

Read more...

Life, AfterLife, After is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Teen Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Sarah Darer Littman at Into the Wardrobe with blogger Tarie.

Here's a teaser:
Tarie: What does winning a Sydney Taylor Honor Award for Life, After mean to you?

Sarah: I can't tell you how incredibly honored I feel to be twice honored by the AJL. When my first book, Confessions of a Closet Catholic won the Sydney Taylor Award for Older Readers in 2006, I was new on the scene and there was a part of me that thought maybe it was a fluke, especially since I followed up my win with a terrible case of second book blues (probably not helped by the fact that I was going through a very lengthy and painful divorce at the time). This time, it is perhaps even more meaningful because I feel like, "Wow, maybe they didn't make a horrible mistake that first time after all!"

Read more...

Hush

Hush is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Teen Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Eishes Chayil at Frume Sarah's World with blogger Frume Sarah.

Here's a teaser:
Frume:As our synagogue educator is fond of asking, what is your goal? What do you hope that this book will do for others?

Eishes:It was the only way to have a voice heard that would not be heard otherwise. It was witnessing the agony and devastating trauma that abuse brings on its victims and realizing that I was lucky (or cursed) enough to be a writer, and can tell the story they can not.

Read more...

Tune in tomorrow for the final day of our blog tour! We'll feature an  interview with Morris Gleitzman (Once) at The Fourth Musketeer, and we'll have a wrap-up with all the winners over at The Whole Megillah. We hope you've been enjoying the blog tour and we'll see you tomorrow!
Welcome back to the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour! Today we've got interviews with each of our gold medal-winning authors!

Gathering SparksGathering Sparks is the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Younger Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Howard Schwartz at Boston Bibliophile with blogger Marie Cloutier.

Here's a teaser:
Marie: Who do you see as the audience for the book?

Howard: Since the repair of the world is such a big job, I hope that everyone will do their part. So while the Ari lived in an exclusively Jewish world in Safed, his myth should be an inspiration not only for Jews, but for everyone. Of course, Jewish people can be especially proud that a genius like the Ari [Rabbi Isaac Luria] created a myth to inspire and guide the people to work together in harmony to make the world a better place. But the basic teaching of tikkun olam can be appreciated by everyone, Jewish or not.

Read more...

Hereville

Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword is the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Older Readers Category.

Read an interview with author/illustrator Barry Deutsch at BewilderBlog with blogger Laurel Snyder.

Here's a teaser:
Laurel: Did you just wake up one day and say, “Aha! What the world really needs is an Ortho-fantasy-graphic novel!”

Barry:Yes, that’s exactly it!

I think Hereville was mostly inspired by Lis Harris’ book Holy Days, which has a lot of appealing stories of daily Hasidic life. I read Holy Days 10 or 15 years before I created Hereville, but I thought it would be a great setting for a comic book, so it was in the back of my brain, waiting to be used.

Read more...

The Things a Brother Knows

The Things a Brother Knows is the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Teen Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Dana Reinhardt at A Chair, a Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy with blogger Liz Burns.

Here's a teaser:
Liz B: After reading The Things a Brother Knows, two things in particular stay with the reader. First, the family and friends of Levi Katznelson are amazing. I want to go his house for Friday dinner. Second, there are no easy answers, but much to think about, when it comes to sending young people to fight wars. What inspired this story? In creating such a complex world, were you a “plunger” or “plotter”?

Dana: For better or worse, I’m a plunger. This does tend to get me into trouble when I reach a certain point in my writing, as I inevitably do, where I have no idea where the story is going next. I start with characters. I begin at the beginning. I usually have some sense of where they’re going, and often I find out later that it’s somewhere I didn’t imagine.

With this book I started with listening to the radio and hearing the voices of the mothers of returning soldiers telling the stories of their changed and damaged sons, and I started to wonder about the other son, the brother who didn’t go. What has his life been like the last few years? What will it be like now that his brother is back? This is where I found Levi and the rest of the Katznelsons. They’d love to have you over for Friday night dinner, by the way.

Read more...

Tune in tomorrow for interviews with Kristina Swarner (illustrator, Gathering Sparks and Modeh Ani) at Alice Pope's SCBWI Children's Market Blog, Sarah Darer Littman (Life, After) at Into the Wardrobe, and Eishes Chayil (Hush) at Frume Sarah's World.
Welcome to Day 3 of the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour! We've got three more exciting interviews for you today.

Cakes & MiraclesCakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Younger Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Barbara Diamond Goldin at Great Kid Books with blogger Mary Ann Scheuer.

Here's a teaser:
Mary Ann: What was the inspiration for this story, Cakes and Miracles? Does it come from a specific folktale?

Barbara: The inspiration for Cakes and Miracles came from a dream where, in my sleep, I put together aspects of tales I’d been reading in a new way. I love Isaac B. Singer stories, and had just read one about a blind boy and girl who were friends. I was also reading a book by Bella Chagall, where she mentioned that on Purim in her home town, people gave each other not only hamentashen, but also cookies in the shapes of violins, etc. That night I had a dream about a blind boy who makes cookies in wonderful shapes. As soon as I woke up, I wrote these ideas down. Then I had to fill in the story.

Read more...

Jaime ZollarsJaime Zollars is the illustrator of Cakes and Miracles.

Read an interview with Jaime at The Book of Life with blogger Heidi Estrin.

Here's a teaser:
Heidi: Cakes and Miracles was originally published in 1991 with illustrations by Erika Weihs. Did you refer to the original illustrations in any way as you worked on this book, or did you start completely fresh?

Jaime: I started completely fresh on this title. My first instinct was to look at the original book first, but then I decided that it would only limit my thinking if I peeked too early in the process. Once I had my sketches in, I did order the book to see how it was first illustrated.

Read more...

Black RadishesBlack Radishes is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Older Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Susan Lynn Meyer at The Three R's - Reading, 'Riting & Research with blogger Joyce Hostetter.

Here's a teaser:
Joyce: Talk to us about research – how you approach it, what you’ve learned about how to research, and about your favorite way to gather info.

Susan: What works best for me is a “total immersion” method of research for historical fiction. I read everything I can about the period, especially first-hand accounts, such as memoirs. I love reading newspapers from the time, because they give you a very vivid sense of what daily life was like. They can be painful to read, too, because of their immediacy—they are written just as terrible things are happening, and the writers are living through those terrible times and don’t know yet how the events will turn out.

Read more...

Tune in tomorrow for interviews with Howard Schwartz (Gathering Sparks) at Boston Bibliophile, Barry Deutsch (Hereville) at BewilderBlog, and Dana Reinhardt (The Things a Brother Knows) at A Chair, a Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy.
http://greatkidbooks.blogspot.com/2011/02/sydney-taylor-award-blog-tour-chatting.html
Welcome back to the Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour! We've got three more exciting interviews for you today.

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="138" caption="Emma's Poem"][/caption]

Emma's Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Younger Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Linda Glaser at ASHarmony with blogger Elizabeth Lipp.

Here's a teaser:
Elizabeth: Linda, I was surprised to read that you struggled as a young reader. How does your struggles as a young reader inform your writing for young readers?

Linda: Yes. I did struggle with reading when I was a kid. In fact, I thought I'd never learn how. That may be why I use a clear simple style when I write for children. I was the type of reader who needed that. And now, I want my books to be accessible to all children--including those who find reading difficult. When I do school visits I always let kids know that I struggled to read. I figure there are probably some kids listening who are heartened to hear that I know what they are going through and that there is hope.

Read more...

Statue of Liberty under constructionClaire Nivola is the illustrator of Emma's Poem.

Read an interview with Claire at Lori Calabrese with blogger (wait for it) Lori Calabrese.

Here's a teaser:
Lori: Emma Lazarus's famous lines inspired the way we envision America's exceptional freedom and the way we hold it dear today. How were you inspired to create the amazing illustrations in Emma's Poem?

Claire: Most inspiring for me was the photographic record of the time - pictures of newly arrived immigrants, photographs of the statue itself partially uncrated, of the statue once erected seen from the decks of ships arriving in the N.Y. harbor. Photography was still in its infancy then, but often those early black and white pictures documenting the arrival of a refugee or a family carrying all its modest belongings provided a powerful, deeply telling, and poignant record.

Read more...

One is Not a Lonely NumberOne Is Not a Lonely Number is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Older Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Evelyn Krieger at Ima On and Off the Bima with blogger Phyllis Sommer.

Here's a teaser:

Phyllis: What inspired you to write this story? I see from your biography that you are one of six kids, what brought you to a story about an only child?

Evelyn: When you are the oldest of six kids, its only natural to occasionally wonder what it's like to be an only child.As part of my preparation for the book, I interviewed only children--both kids and adults.  I remember a first grader who wanted a sibling so badly that he invented his mother's pregnancy for show and tell. And I fell for it!

Read more...

Tune in tomorrow for interviews with Barbara Diamond Goldin (Cakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale) at Great Kid Books, Jaime Zollars (illustrator, Cakes and Miracles) at The Book of Life, and Susan Lynn Meyer (Black Radishes) at The Three R's - Reading, 'Riting, & Research.
The Sydney Taylor Book Award 2011 Blog Tour begins today with three stops!

ResistanceResistance is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Older Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Carla Jablonski at Jewish Comics with blogger Steven Bergson.

Here's a teaser:
Steven: When did the idea for writing the Resistance books come to you? Was there a particular event that occurred which inspired you to write it?

Carla: The war in Iraq, actually, got me wondering about what it would be like to live in an occupied country. I was also interested in the tensions between an experience as it is happening vs. history or hindsight.

Read more...

image from Resistance

Leland Purvis is the illustrator of the graphic novel, Resistance.

Read an interview with Leland at Shelf-Employed with blogger Lisa Taylor.

Here's a teaser:



Lisa: In Resistance, you often use Paul’s sketchbook to portray people or events  in the story. I found it interesting that, in most cases, Paul’s sketchbook depicts events not through the filtered eye of the young boy, but as they are. In my mind, that tells a story in itself - that the behavior of Nazi  Germany was so horrific that exaggeration, even for an imaginative young boy, is impossible. Was that the point that you were trying to make, or does the sketchbook have another purpose in the story?

Leland: The sketchbook serves a couple of purposes, which is why you were sensing a dual-role, essentially. On the one hand it was a narrative device by which Paul could be valuable to the Maquis resistance in a credible way. Also it does provide a look into Paul's head about his reaction to the town and people around him. We very much included panels that were strictly Paul's P.O.V. This has continued into the sequels.

Read more...


Modeh Ani

Modeh Ani: A Good Morning Book is a 2011 Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Younger Readers Category. Its predecessor, The Bedtime Sh'ma, was the 2008 Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Younger Readers Category.

Read an interview with author Sarah Gershman at Biblio File with blogger Jennie Rothschild.

Here's a teaser:
Jennie: Many Jews do not write out God and instead use a substitute, such as G-d. However, throughout your book, you use God. Why did you make this decision and do you have a response to those who are critical of it (I noticed it came up in the Amazon reviews of the Bedtime Sh'ma.)

Sarah: My main motivation was to make the book accessible to people of all backgrounds. That being said, there are also Rabbinic opinions that say that writing God in English is not the same thing as writing God's full name in Hebrew. We were careful not to do that in the Hebrew portions of the book, as well as on the Bedtime Sh'ma CD.

Read more...

Tune in tomorrow for interviews with Linda Glaser (author, Emma's Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty) at ASHarmony, Claire Nivola (illustrator, Emma's Poem) at Lori Calabrese, and Evelyn Krieger (One is Not a Lonely Number) at Ima On and Off the Bima.

Here’s this week’s collection of links about libraries, Jewish libraries, librarianship and more. Many thanks to Marie Cloutier for establishing this feature on AJL's Blog, and welcome to Bob Schrier, who now takes up the reins!



In the recent reference workshop held by the local NYC chapter of AJL, Columbia University’s Michelle Chesner discussed the social bookmarking tool Delicious. If you haven't signed up for an account yet, now is the time. Use Delicious to save your bookmarks into a searchable index that can be shared with others and is web-accessible (rather than accessible only locally on your computer).   Search and see what a couple of AJL members have done with Delicious here and here.


Are upper-classmen popping into your library yet to begin looking for jobs? JewishJobs provides a searchable database and weekly email digest for Jewish-related jobs nationwide.


Cooking based on the weekly parsha brought to you by Elisha's Double Portion. Each week, Elisha takes some element of the weekly Torah portion and transforms it into an idea for a recipe. Look at her recipe for gold dusted chocolate covered sesame cookies for Parshas Terumah.


Keep your eyes on the National Digital Public Library program sponsored by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, which is attempting to make millions of books and resources accessible to library and school systems nationwide for free (as opposed to GoogleBooks). Follow their blog here at Library City.


The European Holocaust Research Infrastructure recently began its large-scale four year project. Financially sponsored by the EU, 20 organizations worldwide are joining together on a collaborative digitization program that will promote greater access to geographically dispersed Holocaust documents and artifacts.


Check out Anya's War, a new young adult Jewish novel by Andrea Alban about a girl and her family who escape Hitler's forces by running away to China. The book is due to be released sometime in the beginning of this month.



Enjoy! Email Bob at schriro at gmail.com with feedback and suggestions of links for future roundups!

Posted in: Link Round-Up
AJL Council Meeting 2011

By Barbara Bietz, Chair, Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee

I recently returned from an inspiring weekend in New York attending the AJL Mid-Winter Board and Council Meeting. Earlier in  January I experienced a flurry of activity for the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee and I was excited about the announcement of the 2011 Awards. It was so heartwarming to arrive in New York to discover that everyone from AJL was equally enthusiastic and appreciate of the committee’s efforts. On Sunday night after the Board meeting, the SSC gang had a dinner meeting at Mr. Broadway (SSC is the Synagogue, School & Center division of AJL, which oversees the Sydney Taylor Book Award). Over pickles and stuffed cabbage, SSC President Joyce Levine led the group. We discussed important issues and brainstormed solutions, including outreach to library volunteers, updating our blog, and finding more way to reach out to the AJL community. As I looked at all the faces at the table I felt a sense of awe. Here we sat, a group of passionate, committed peoples from various parts of the country and Canada, with a shared mission – to promote Jewish libraries. Whether it’s placing the perfect book in the right hands, educating others, or fundraising – it’s all about doing the best for our communities.

The Monday morning Council meeting started early – with plenty of coffee and pastries for all! Development Chair and SSC Secretary Kathe Pinchuck shared an inspiring D’var Torah that underscored our commitment as a group. I didn’t know what to expect from the meeting. AJL President Jim Rosenbloom encouraged everyone to share their thoughts and concerns. We tackled some serious challenges – from budget cuts to convention planning and more. There were respectful disagreements, but overall I was encouraged by the level of respect that everyone showed one another. There was a consensus about the importance of welcoming to new members, supporting local chapters, and helping library school students follow a path towards Judaica librarianship. Although much was accomplished, the meeting was also an opportunity for everyone to share good news, visit with old friends, and connect with new ones. I have a wonderful time in New York and feel honored to be part of the AJL family. There are lots of committees that need hands and hearts – so if you have a bit of time and you would like to participate, please consider AJL!


The Sydney Taylor Book Award will be celebrating and showcasing its 2011 gold and silver medalists with a Blog Tour, February 6-11, 2011! Interviews with winning authors and illustrators will appear on a wide variety of Jewish, kidlit, and family-interest blogs. For those of you who have not yet experienced a Blog Tour, it's basically a virtual book tour. Instead of going to a library or bookstore to see an author or illustrator speak, you go to a website on or after the advertised date to read an author’s or illustrator's interview.


Below is the schedule for the 2011 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour. Please follow the links to visit the hosting blogs on or after their tour dates, and be sure to leave plenty of comments!

For the full list of this year's winners, honors, and notable books, please visit the Association of Jewish Libraries website.

THE 2011 SYDNEY TAYLOR BOOK AWARD BLOG TOUR

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2011

Carla Jablonski, author of Resistance
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Older Readers Category
at Jewish Comics

Leland Purvis, illustrator of Resistance
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Older Readers Category
at Shelf-Employed

Sarah Gershman, author of Modeh Ani: A Good Morning Book
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at Biblio File

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2011

Linda Glaser, author of Emma’s Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at ASHarmony

Claire Nivola, illustrator of Emma’s Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at Lori Calabrese

Evelyn Krieger, author of One Is Not a Lonely Number
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Older Readers Category
at Ima On and Off the Bima

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2011

Barbara Diamond Goldin, author of Cakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at Great Kid Books

Jaime Zollars, illustrator of Cakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at The Book of Life

Susan Lynn Meyer, author of Black Radishes
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Older Readers Category
at The 3 Rs – Reading, ‘Riting & Research





WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2011

Howard Schwartz, author of Gathering Sparks
Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at Boston Bibliophile

Barry Deutsch, author and illustrator of Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword
Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Older Readers Category
at BewilderBlog

Dana Reinhardt, author of The Things a Brother Knows
Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Teen Readers Category
at A Chair, a Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2011

Kristina Swarner, illustrator of Gathering Sparks
Sydney Taylor Book Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
And illustrator of Modeh Ani: A Good Morning Book
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Younger Readers Category
at Alice Pope’s SCBWI Children’s Market Blog



Sarah Darer Littman, author of Life, After
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Teen Readers Category
at Into the Wardrobe

Eishes Chayil, author of Hush
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Teen Readers Category
at Frume Sarah’s World

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2011

Morris Gleitzman, author of Once
Sydney Taylor Honor Award winner in the Teen Readers Category
at The Fourth Musketeer

Sydney Taylor Award Winners – Wrap-Up
All winners, all categories
at The Whole Megillah


Music: "Conflict in the Middle Table" by Michael Stampler

Howard Schwartz and Kristina Swarner, author and illustrator of Gathering Sparks, Barry Deutsch, author and illustrator of Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, and Dana Reinhardt, author of The Things a Brother Knows are the 2011 winners of the prestigious Sydney Taylor Book Award.

The Sydney Taylor Book Award honors new books for children and teens that exemplify the highest literary standards while authentically portraying the Jewish experience. The award memorializes Sydney Taylor, author of the classic All-of-a-Kind Family series. The winners will receive their awards at the Association of Jewish Libraries convention in Montreal this June.

Schwartz and Swarner will receive the 2011 gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Younger Readers Category for Gathering Sparks, published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing. Both are second time winners. In 1992, Schwartz received the Sydney Taylor Book Award for The Diamond Tree: Jewish Tales from Around the World. Swarner earned the 2008 Sydney Taylor Book Award for her illustrations in The Bedtime Sh’ma: A Goodnight Book by Sarah Gershman.

Gathering Sparks is based on a sixteenth century teaching of “tikkun olam,” or “repairing the world.” Committee member Debbie Colodny commented, “Schwartz spins a calming tale that suggests that the way to bring peace and well-being to our world is by doing good deeds and loving

one another... Swarner’s art and Schwartz’s poetic words interpret the concept of the vessel as a fleet of ships outlined in the night sky by millions of starry points of light.”

Deutsch will receive the 2011 gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Older Readers Category for Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, published by Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams Books. This is the first graphic novel to win the Award. Committee member Aimee Lurie noted, “Mirka is a clever, headstrong and imaginative heroine who will appeal to a wide audience. Teens who feel like they don’t fit in will have no trouble relating to her balancing what is best for her family versus her desire to fight dragons. Grounded in her religious beliefs, she is willing to put her fantasies aside to celebrate Shabbat. The illustrations strike the perfect balance of showing a realistic Orthodox community, while creating the perfect backdrop for a fairytale.”

Reinhardt will receive the 2011 gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Teen Readers Category for The Things a Brother Knows, published by Wendy Lamb Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books. Levi’s older brother Boaz is a military hero, and Levi has always lived in his shadow. Now Boaz is returning from war and it seems everyone thinks Levi is the luckiest boy in town. When Boaz refuses to engage with his family and barely leaves his room, Levi wonders if his brother will ever be normal. Committee member Rita Soltan said, “Reinhardt creates a moving portrayal of teen characters … She provides balance through Levi and Boaz’s Israeli grandfather, who served in Israel and has experienced war and suicide bombings.  Realistic and subtle, her story unfolds with enough suspense, sardonic humor and pathos to keep readers focused until a conclusion that leaves room for pondering interpretation.”  In 2007, Reinhardt earned a Sydney Taylor Honor Award for A Brief Chapter in My Impossible Life.

Nine Sydney Taylor Honor Books were named for 2011.  For Younger Readers, the Honor Award Winners are: Modeh Ani: A Good Morning Book by Sarah Gershman with illustrations by Kristina Swarner (EKS Publishing), Emma's Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty by Linda Glaser with illustrations by Claire A. Nivola (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children), and Cakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale by Barbara Diamond Goldin with illustrations by Jaime Zollars (Marshall Cavendish Children). Sydney Taylor Honor Award Winners for Older Readers include: Resistance by Carla Jablonski with art by Leland Purvis (First Second, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group), One Is Not a Lonely Number by Evelyn Krieger (YM Books, an imprint of YALDAH Media, Inc.), and Black Radishes by Susan Lynn Meyer (Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books). For Teen readers, the Honor Award Winners are: Hush by Eishes Chayil (Walker & Company, a division of Bloomsbury Publishing), Once by Morris Gleitzman (Henry Holt and Company), and Life, After by Sarah Darer Littman (Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc.).

In addition to the medal-winners, the Award Committee designated twenty-seven Notable Books of Jewish Content for 2011: thirteen in the Younger Readers Category, seven in the Older Readers Category, and seven for Teens.  Notable titles, and more information about the Sydney Taylor Book Award, may be found online at www.SydneyTaylorBookAward.org.

A blog tour, featuring interviews with winning authors and illustrators, will take place in early February, with participation from a wide range of children's literature, family interest, and Jewish blogs. The blog tour schedule will appear on the Association of Jewish Libraries' blog "People of the Books" at JewishLibraries.org/blog.

# # #


The Sydney Taylor Book Award Winner for Younger Readers:

Gathering Sparks by Howard Schwartz with illustrations by Kristina Swarner

(Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group)

The Sydney Taylor Book Award Winner for Older Readers:

Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword by Barry Deutsch

(Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams)

The Sydney Taylor Book Award Winner for Teen Readers:

The Things a Brother Knows by Dana Reinhardt

(Wendy Lamb Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books)

Sydney Taylor Honor Award Winners for Younger Readers:

Modeh Ani: A Good Morning Book by Sarah Gershman with illustrations by Kristina Swarner

(EKS Publishing)

Emma's Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty by Linda Glaser with illustrations by Claire A. Nivola

(Houghton Mifflin Books for Children)

Cakes and Miracles: A Purim Tale by Barbara Diamond Goldin with illustrations by Jaime Zollars

(Marshall Cavendish Children)

Sydney Taylor Honor Award Winners for Older Readers:

Resistance by Carla Jablonski with illustrations by Leland Purvis

(First Second, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group)

One Is Not a Lonely Number by Evelyn Krieger

(YM Books, an imprint of YALDAH Media, Inc.)

Black Radishes by Susan Lynn Meyer

(Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books)

Sydney Taylor Honor Award Winners for Teen Readers:

Hush by Eishes Chayil

(Walker & Company, a division of Bloomsbury Publishing)

Once by Morris Gleitzman

(Henry Holt and Company)

Life, After by Sarah Darer Littman

(Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc.)

Notable Books for Younger Readers:

Engineer Ari and the Sukkah Express by Deborah Bodin Cohen with illustrations by Shahar Kober

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

Feivel's Flying Horses by Heidi Smith Hyde with illustrations by Johanna van der Sterre

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

Miriam in the Desert by Jacqueline Jules with illustrations by Natascia Ugliano

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

The Little Red Hen and the Passover Matzah by Leslie Kimmelman with illustrations by Paul Meisel

(Holiday House)

Say Hello, Lily by Deborah Lakritz with illustrations by Martha Aviles

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

Beautiful Yetta, The Yiddish Chicken by Daniel Pinkwater with illustrations by Jill Pinkwater

(Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group)

A Tale of Two Seders by Mindy Avra Portnoy with illustrations by Valeria Cis

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

Jackie's Gift by Sharon Robinson with illustrations by E.B. Lewis

(The Viking Press, an imprint of Penguin)

Zishe the Strong Man by Robert Rubenstein with illustrations by Woody Miller

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

Sara Finds a Mitzva by Rebeka Simhaee with illustrations by Michael Weber

(Hachai Publishing)

Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to be Kosher by Laurel Snyder with illustrations by David Goldin

(Tricycle Press, an imprint of The Crown Trade Group/Random House)

The Rooster Prince of Breslov by Ann Stampler with illustrations by Eugene Yelchin

(Clarion, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Dear Tree by Doba Rivka Weber with illustrations by Phyllis Saroff

(Hachai Publishing)

Notable Books for Older Readers:

Is It Night or Day? by Fern Schumer Chapman

(Farrar Straus Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group)

Kings and Carpenters: One Hundred Bible Land Jobs You Might Have Praised or Panned

by Laurie Coulter with illustrations by Mary Newbigging

(Annick Press)

Hot Pursuit: Murder in Mississippi by Stacia Deutsch and Rhody Cohon with illustrations by Craig Orback

(Kar-Ben, an imprint of Lerner)

The Orphan Rescue by Anne Dublin with illustrations by Qin Leng

(Second Story Press)

The Year of Goodbyes by Debbie Levy

(Hyperion Books, an imprint of Disney Book Group)

Sharing Our Homeland: Palestinian and Jewish Children at Summer Peace Camp by Trisha Marx with photographs by Cindy Karp

(Lee & Low Books)

Mitzvah the Mutt by Sylvia Rouss with illustrations by Martha Rast

(Yaldah Publishing)

Notable Books for Teen Readers:

An Unspeakable Crime: The Prosecution and Persecution of Leo Frank by Elaine Marie Alphin

(Carolrhoda Books, an imprint of Lerner)

Annexed by Sharon Dogar

(Houghton Mifflin Books for Children)

Inconvenient by Margie Gelbwasser

(Flux, an imprint of Llewellyn Worldwide Ltd.)

Anne Frank: The Anne Frank House Authorized Graphic Biography by Sid Jacobson and Ernie Colon

(Hill and Wang)

Queen of Secrets by Jenny Meyerhoff

(Farrar Straus Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan)

Under a Red Sky: Memoir of a Childhood in Communist Romania by Haya Leah Molnar

(Farrar Straus Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan)

Cry of the Giraffe by Judie Oron

(Annick Press)
An anti-Semitic incident at Indiana University, Bloomington in November included not only rock-throwing, but defilement of Jewish texts from the shelves of the library. In support of IU's Jewish Studies program, our AJL member librarian at IU, and the university's efforts to combat prejudice, AJL President James Rosenbloom sent the following letter to IU President Dr. Michael A. McRobbie.
Dear Dr. McRobbie:

Recent anti-Semitic acts on the campus of Indiana University Bloomington are of great concern to the Association of Jewish Libraries, of which librarian Noa Wahrman is a member. Rock throwing at a Chabad House, at a church where synagogue services are held, and at a Hillel Center are shocking acts of anti-Semitic vandalism. The vandal or vandals also struck at the cultural heart of Judaism by taking eight volumes of Hebrew commentaries on the Talmud from the Library’s shelves and defiling them in bathrooms. We are not dealing with someone ignorant of Judaism. This act is a deliberate effort to insult and hurt Jews.

The Association of Jewish Libraries condemns these vicious acts. We are pleased to hear that the FBI and police are actively seeking to apprehend the individual or individuals responsible for this hate crime. We commend your administration’s and community’s quick and strong response to these acts. This is an appropriate moment to educate everyone in your community about the evils of prejudice and hatred in general, and about anti-Semitism in particular.

The members of the Association of Jewish Libraries stand in solidarity with you in your fight against anti-Semitism, and will support you in your efforts to combat this evil, which has unfortunately appeared on some campuses.

Yours truly,

James P. Rosenbloom
President, Association of Jewish Libraries

To read more about the incident itself in Jweekly, click here.

To read about Indiana University's response to the incident, click here.

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