My Interview with Fellow Creston Books Author, the Incredible Stephanie Bucklin

It was such a thrill to finally meet fellow Creston Books author, Stephanie Bucklin, at the SOKY Book Fest. Aside from our Creston Books connection, we have also had the privilege of having the amazingly talented Chris Ewald do the illustrations for our books. Chris illustrated the cover for Stephanie’s debut middle grade novel, Jack Death.

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Briefly, from Amazon:

Jack is an ordinary boy except that his father happens to be Death. Nadine is a perfectly normal girl except that her Mother is – oh well, that’s a Secret and not to be carelessly revealed on the back cover of a book. The important thing is that together, these two incredibly average children discover the lemon-headed villain behind the destruction of the Magical Creature Reserve and piece together his plot to divide the Golden and Black Bloods. They may even save a few lives.

With story elements reminiscent of Percy Jackson and Lemony Snicket, flavored with a smattering of Harry Potter and Terry Pratchett and recounted in an arch, tongue-firmly-in-cheek style, this story will find an eager audience in upper elementary through middle school.

The intrusive and mysterious narrator provides know-it-all asides and rich vocabulary as background to the abundant action. There is plenty of comic violence and slapstick to keep the most reluctant reader engaged, but enough interesting language and subtlety that a more bookish reader won’t feel underestimated. Stock characters — the school bully, the absent-minded professor, the damsel in distress — often turn out to have more to them that first meets the eye.

To learn more about Stephanie and her work, please visit her website. And while you’re in the neighborhood, please also check out my interview with Stephanie. Thanks!

Independent Bookstore Day at Bank Street Book Store

 

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When I think about what makes my Upper West Side neighborhood so special at the tippy top of my list is Bank Street Book Store. Where else can you enjoy free story time, meet your favorite authors and illustrators, and help your children explore cultures and worlds far beyond the Upper West Side?

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Nothing makes me happier than to celebrate Independent Bookstore Day at Bank Street.

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Here are a few photographic highlights of this very special store on this special day.

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Peter Ackerman, Chris Grabenstein, Bill Wurzel & Claire Wurtzel

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Carol Weston 

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Elizabeth Zunon

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Me & Chris Ewald 

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Chris Ewald

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Chris Ewald sketching 

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Bank Street Book Store is a treasured gem of the Upper West Side. It is one of two children’s bookstores in all of Manhattan. That’s right. Two.

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The next generation of authors and illustrators

So, please be sure to make Independent Bookstore Day more than an annual event. At your next visit to Bank Street Book Store, don’t forget to buy lots of books and shout out a very big THANK YOU to this incredible bookstore for enriching both our children and community.

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Bank Street Book Store

A Magical Celebration for Hildie Bitterpickles at The Corner Bookstore

On Thursday night, there was magic in the air at The Corner Bookstore as witches, warlocks, friends, family, and even my favorite French bulldog, Matilde, came out for Hildie Bitterpickles Needs Her Sleep’s big launch celebration.

Here are some photographic highlights of this magical night:

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Chris Ewald & me

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Me, Liza Fleissig & Chris Ewald

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My witchtastic niece & me

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Another witch-a-ri-fic photo of my niece 

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Early sketch of Hildie Bitterpickles by Chris Ewald raffled off during the party. 

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Another early sketch of Hildie Bitterpickles by Chris Ewald raffled off during the party.

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Cupcakes! 

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Cookies!

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Donna Marie

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Francoise Newman & Matilde 

Hildie Bitterpickles and I would like to shout out a very big THANK YOU to The Corner Bookstore for making this evening so special.

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THE CORNER BOOKSTORE

 

Hildie Bitterpickles Needs Her Sleep Celebrates Her Book Birthday

 

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Witches, warlocks, goblins and ghouls! It’s time to break out your dancing shoes because Hildie Bitterpickles is celebrating her book birthday on April 12th. (Technically, Hildie Bitterpickles was a preemie baby book since she warehoused early, but April 12th is a fine date to celebrate Hildie’s birthday. Every witch I know wants an October 31 book birthday. But, let’s be honest. It’s overdone and unoriginal.)

So cast your spells for fun, crafts, treats, giveaways, and more at these three witchtasticallly awesome upcoming events:

Southold Free Library, 53705 Main Road, Southold, NY, April 16th, at 2:00 pm 

The Corner Bookstore, 1313 Madison Avenue at 93rd Street, April 28, at 6:00 pm

Bank Street Book Store, 2780 Broadway at West 107th Street, April 30, at 11:30 am

Feel free to wear your witchiest and warlockiest pjs or Halloween costumes.

Wait! It gets even better. Chris Ewald, illustrator extraordinaire, will be at The Corner Bookstore and Bank Street Book Store to share his artistic talents. Can it get more witchtastic than that? I think not!

Happy Birthday, Hildie Bitterpickles!

Look What Arrived in the Mail!

 

BOOKS! SPELLBINDINGLY BEAUTIFUL BOOKS!

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I would like to shout out a very big THANK YOU to Marissa Moss, publisher and editor extraordinaire. THANK YOU for taking a chance on my quirky little witch; to my very special agents, Liza Fleissig and Ginger Harris-Dontzin, whose magic touch heralded Hildie Bitterpickles to Creston Books; to Chris Ewald for making Hildie Bitterpickles more adorable than anything I could have ever imagined; to Simon Stahl, whose design magic never ceases to amaze me; and to my amazing critique group for helping me persevere during those really awful rough drafts. THANK YOU!!!