What’s your favorite word?

As I may have mentioned before, I love words.   Individual words can be just as wonderful as they are when they are strung together to form a story.  I was looking around my desk this morning  and I noticed books with one word titles:  WonderstruckLingerMaliceClarity.

They are just great words to say.  They play well on the tongue and have great meanings.  (They are all a great read as well if you haven’t already done so.)

One of my very favorite words is Gotham.  I love saying it.  I love what it means.  I love that I live in a place nicknamed Gotham.  Asking around this morning, I found I wasn’t the only one who had words we loved to say.  My intern Jenna loves the word Budge.  I emailed Michael and he chose the word Fortuitous.  And I have to agree with him: “It’s a lot more fun then fortunate!”

I then asked around at the OOM meeting today for everyone else’s favorite words.

Continue reading What’s your favorite word?


In Our Feeds: top 100 sci-fi books, Hunger Games explained, more Latinos attending college

Each Friday, we share a handful of links we found interesting, provocative, funny — or just plain cool. We call it In Our Feeds. Enjoy!

Now that NPR’s readers have picked their top 100 science fiction and fantasy books, SF Signal has created an easy-to-use flowchart to help navigate book lovers through all 100 books.

CNN helpfully explains what the Hunger Games are…and wonders, somewhat belatedly, whether it will be the next thing to take over pop culture. (Hint: it already has.)

According to a new Pew Research Center study based on the 2009-2010 U.S. Census Bureau data, the number of Latinos enrolled in either two or four-year colleges has hit a record high. Click through to read what elements are contributing to this important increase.

Normally we don’t condone cutting up books, but these amazing paper sculptures created by an anonymous artist have been popping up mysteriously at libraries and cultural institutions in Scotland. It’s incredibly crafty. Makes us think…books could never be considered anything less than art!

Author Paulo Coelho published a post on the Wall Street Journal’s Speakeasy blog this week about his experience with social media, trying to understand why he has more likes on Facebook than Madonna. Last we checked, Coelho is at 6,631,262 “Likes” and Madonna is at 6,265,952!

A new lesson strategy where teachers are “flipping the classroom”  —  students read lectures at home and the classroom is where the hands on excersizes usually seen in homework are tackled. What do you think? Would students find this more engaging and helpful?


A snapshot of the National Book Festival 2011

The National Book Festival on the National Mall

This past weekend more than 100 authors traveled to our nation’s capital to celebrate books! That’s right, September 24th and 25th was the 11th Annual National Book Festival, held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Organized and sponsored by the LIbrary of Congress, the National Book Festival gives writers and poets the opportunity to connect with their fans and discuss their latest works.

And some of your favorite Scholastic authors were there! If you couldn’t get to the National Mall for the festival, never fear…we have an exciting behind-the-scenes slideshow for you to check out!


Continue reading A snapshot of the National Book Festival 2011

Shel Silverstein’s legacy lives on

Harper Collins

My childhood bedtime ritual often went something like this: whine about having to turn off the TV, stomp into the bathroom to brush my teeth, and finally give in — as long as there was half an hour left to curl up with my dad to read together out of one of Shel Silverstein’s many books.

So imagine my delight when I found out that Silverstein’s family and long-time editor released a new compilation of some previously unpublished poems and drawings and some old favorites, called Everything On It, last week. Continue reading Shel Silverstein’s legacy lives on

Who are you, and what do you want?

Every year or so, we like to find out more about you, our awesome blog readers. (Do we tell you enough how awesome you are? Because we really do think it, all the time!)

We’ve put together a brief survey to find out more about you and what you want from us. And as a thank-you, we’ll choose one random participant to win a book prize pack! (You must be a U.S. resident and 18 years or over to enter. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Void where prohibited. Legal rules are here.) The survey closes at noon EST on Friday, October 7, 2011.


The survey is now closed. Thanks to all who participated!

And thank you for reading OOM!

The Essentials: Banned Books

There are books; and then there are the Essentials.  Those are the books that typify their genre.  Librarians, and book lovers alike, all have their opinions.  Invariably someone will ask: “If I was going to read one [insert a genre of book here] book, which should it be?”  Here at OOM, we decided to attempt to answer that question. 

From the time that I first understood that people banned books, I knew that it was wrong.  I thought ideas were supposed to be expressed and shared.  I learned about the First Amendment in school and believed that banning or challenging books was a thing of the past.  I learned about it in history after all.  And then I became a librarian. 

I’ve written about the importance of reading banned books before.  I believe in the courage it takes to open yourself up to ideas that are different to you.  I celebrate the guts it takes to defend the rights of people to read books you don’t like. 

Books have been banned or challenged for a host of reasons.  Today, we are not focused on the reason why.  Today we are all about the books.  We at OOM want to highlight which banned or challenged books are our favorite.  In honor of Banned Books Week, we attempt to answer the question: If I was going to read one banned book or challenged book, which should it be?” Continue reading The Essentials: Banned Books

Book talks beyond words

A few days ago, Brian Selznick was at Scholastic headquarters in New York for a presentation about his new book, Wonderstruck. Unlike your everyday author talk, where a writer will talk to an audience about their book, read an excerpt, then take questions, Selznick used a multimedia approach that highlighted his visual influences as well as his early work.

Selznick’s presentation was certainly engaging, but also out of the box in terms of writers talking about their work. But it’s not new if you’ve ever attended a book talk with a graphic novelist. Those tend to be expansive experiences that add to your understanding of not only the author you’re there to see, but also of the medium itself.
Continue reading Book talks beyond words