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Welcome Friends! Here is a place for teachers, parents, librarians and writers to learn what's going on in the world of book author Karma Wilson.

Sneak Peaks at the S&S catalog!

I always get previews of upcoming titles by Simon and Schuster because I’m on the catalog list. I have the summer 08 catalog in my hot little hands and I’ve noticed a few notables I thought I’d share.

Catalog Cover: The book that makes the catalog cover is always a big deal. I’ve had one book on the cover–and that was Bear Wants More.  It was a huge honor for me.  The summer 08 catalog cover is artwork from the middle grade novel Kenny and The Dragon by Tony DiTerlizzi.  I happen to be a big DiTerlizzi fan. His version of Mary Howitt’s classic, Spider and the Fly is one of my favorite picture books.  The artwork for Kenny and the Dragon looks amazing.  I asume it’s an illustrated novel.

From the description it appears the story itself is a spin on Kenneth’s Grahame’s The Reluctant Dragon.  The main charactar is a rabbit named Kenny who is trapped in a battle of magnificent proportions! The problem is that the battle is between his two dear friends. On one side we have Graeme the dragon, an educated, well read pacifist. On the other side is George, a retired knight and dragon slayer.  When the folks in Kenny’s town discover a dragon running loose they enlist George to slay him! It’s up to Kenny to save the day.  I love how DeTerlizzi names the character’s after Kenneth Grahame! (I have a character coming out named Pip who was named after the Pippin character in Lord of the Rings). I’m looking forward to this one, and I have to say the artwork makes a fabulous catalog cover! Tony will go down in history as one of the great illustrators of the century.

My first pick: The book I am looking most forward to is The Underneath by Kathi Appelt, with drawings  by David Small.  Kathi is known as a picture book author and this is her debut novel. The description has me absolutely drooling to read this book!  A very pregnant calico cat is lost in the bayou and hears the lonley howl of a hound dog.  The unlikely pair become friends and the cat takes up residence under the porch of a ramshakle home.  Ranger (the hound) urges the cat to keep her kittens hidden under the porch lest the owner of the house use them as aligator bait.  But Ranger assures the new mother her babies will be safe shrouded in the hidden darkness of The Underneath. But when a curious kitten explores a set of remarkable events unfolds!  What are the events? I’m already on the edge of my seat and this just from the catalog copy and a small excerpt. Good luck Kathi, on this novel debut. You have me hooked! 

Nonfiction to Die For: Pyramids and Mummies by Anne Bolton. Wow, this looks very cool! A non-fiction book about Egypitan afertlife rituals. I have always been drawn to ancient cultures, so this strikes me as a book I’d have found very intriguing as a child (okay, even as an adult–but I’m a childlike adult).  The book itself is shaped like a pyramid and explains the complicated process from mummification to entombment!  It also includes fold out trivia facts and a robber’s confession. Oooo…spooky! 

That’s it for today.  More picks tomorrow.  I hope you enjoy the sneak peak!