Search on SLJ.com ....
Subscribe to SLJ
100 Scope Notes
Inside 100 Scope Notes

About Travis Jonker

Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at scopenotes@gmail.com, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.

One Star Review Guess Who? (#22)

One Star Review Guess Who

Can you guess the classic children’s book by its scathing one-star review on Goodreads or Amazon? CREEPY! I never understood why it is such a children’s favourite. It is creepy in psychotic clown sort of a way and highly highly trippy! Click here for the answer. One Star Review Guess Who (#1) One Star Review [...]

Link Du Jour: Kindle Unlimited from All Sides

amazon

Amazon is now offering Kindle Unlimited, an all-you-can-read e-book service that will cost 9.99 per month. Kindle Unlimited is stirring up all sorts of reactions online: Huffington Post says what I was thinking: this is sort of a glorified library card On the flip side, Tom Worstall thinks the UK should ditch libraries and give everyone a Kindle [...]

Books on Film: Staake Spotted

Staake Commercial

While watching the Top 100 House Party Songs on Fuse last night (don’t judge), who do I see? Bob Staake – the illustrator responsible for Bluebird, The Red Lemon, and a batch of other picture books. No, he hasn’t created one of the Top 100 House Party Songs of all time (although I’m guessing he [...]

Review: Sisters by Raina Telgemeier

Sisters

Sisters By Raina Telgemeier Color by Braden Lamb Graphix (Scholastic) ISBN: 9780545540599 $24.99 Grades 3- Out August 26, 2014 *Best New Book* Find it at: Schuler Books | Your Library Family stories are tough to beat, aren’t they? Aside from being endlessly relatable, they also give a peek into the inner workings of a household [...]

Creepy Library Statue Status Update

Statue Status Update

If you’re confused, click here for the creepy library statues backstory. Created with thewallmachine.com

Books on Film: ‘They’re Playing a Game Without Rules’

Ipcar

The first book Dahlov Ipcar ever illustrated was The Little Fisherman, written by a gal named Margaret Wise Brown. Ipcar went on to illustrate somewhere in the neighborhood of thirty more. This video, produced by Nobrow/Flying Eye Books on the occasion of the re-release of two of Ipcar’s books (The Wonderful Egg and I Like [...]

All Middle Grade Novels Should Be 192 Pages. No Exceptions.

image

Imagine a world… Where all middle grade fiction is 192 pages. No exceptions. There’s been talk for a few years now about the expanding page counts in books for young people. Some point to Harry Potter as the reason. One type of book that hasn’t ballooned is the humble picture book. There are exceptions, but [...]

The Wildest Children’s Books of 2014

Jim Curious

The amount of cleverness in children’s literature never ceases to amaze me. While some decry the sameness of picture books, I believe that there are plenty of bold and unique books coming out, once you start looking around. What follows are a few 2014 books that made me and Salvador Dali double take – in [...]

Link Du Jour: Get Wilder

Wild Things

Travis here with a quick public service announcement for those who love children’s literature: In the lead-up to the release of their book Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature, authors Betsy Bird (A Fuse #8 Production) and Julie Danielson (Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast) are posting some of the true stories that weren’t included [...]

This One Time, At Nerdcamp

20140710-193850-70730350.jpg

Come for the knowledge, stay to admire the spectacular balloons. Earlier this week 350 teachers, librarians, administrators, authors, and illustrators converged on Parma, Michigan for the second annual nErDcampMI. Like any good sequel, the is year’s camp was bigger and bolder. It also got some nice coverage in the local news. It was an early [...]

The State of Doughnuts in Las Vegas, Nevada (or 2014 ALA Annual Conference Recap)

9781423178651_3537f

In case you’ve never been there (as I hadn’t before the 2014 American Library Association Annual Conference a couple weekends ago), the first thing you need to know about Las Vegas is: they don’t mess around. When you visit, you can be playing the slots seconds after deplaning. I kinda love the idea that someone [...]

Review: The Qwikpick Papers: Poop Fountain! by Tom Angleberger

Poop Fountain

The Qwikpick Papers: Poop Fountain! By Tom Angleberger Amulet (ABRAMS) ISBN: 9781419704253 $12.95 Grades 4-7 Out Now Find it at: Schuler Books | Your Library Note: Sometimes an idea makes so much sense, you have to steal it try it yourself. Poop Fountain! is a re-release of The Qwikpick Adventure Society, originally published by Dial [...]

Link Du Jour: Speak Loudly

31 Comments Huge

Have you been following the discussion about the latest update in the ALSC policy for service on award committees? Roger Sutton talks about it in the current Horn Book editorial and the comments section has been lighting up. If you’ve served on an award committee or you hope to, you’ll want to read this. Click [...]

One Star Review Guess Who? (#21)

One Star Review Guess Who

Can you guess the classic children’s book by its scathing one-star review on Goodreads or Amazon? Terrible characterization. Blue Horse? What the heck is that!? The plot is monotonous and dull. And the ending…a montage of scenes from the book, and not even a good one! The only thing I can say in its favor [...]

Walter Dean Myers, 1937-2014

20140703-081903-29943122.jpg

It was a shock to hear that author Walter Dean Myers passed away on July 1st. Myers’s work had a tremendous impact on books for young people, and he will be sorely missed. Click here to read his obituary at walterdeanmyers.net. (Photo: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/67/Walter_Dean_Myers_2001_Bookfest_screen_grab.jpg)