Young Adult Fiction Lollapalooza
Junior Recommends...

Monday Coffee Talk, June 18th

Of all the new Beowulfs for children, Charles McGrath likes Michael Mopurgo's best. See his review in yesterday's New York Times Book Review for details. I do admire the way the NYTBR can snap its fingers and get someone like McGrath, its former editor and former second-in-command at the New Yorker, to write about children's books.

Another promising blog from School Library Journal made its debut last week: Nonfiction Matters. (Please, please, SLJ, get rid of that bouncing ad. It is interfering with the launch of the cool new content.) [Update: Tuesday, June 19: That ad is gone. Yay! You rock, SLJ.]

The deadline for submissions to the June Carnival of Children's Literature is tomorrow, June 19th. More info at A Year of Reading.


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Beowulf is on our reading list for the Fall. I will look into these newer versions. We used the Ian Serraillier retelling the last time through the Middle Ages. My son loved Beowulf. Thanks for keeping me informed.

Any time, Wisteria! I'm glad to hear you've tried out Beowulf already and that it was well-received. Do y'all read any Shakespeare adaptations, too?

We started with Edith Nesbit's Stories from Shakespeare and a few of Lois Burdett's Shakespeare Can Be Fun renditions, but the last two we've read, Macbeath and A Midsummer Night's Dream have been the adult versions. I also dragged my children to the Stratford Festival for a week of Shakespeare and other shows. Before you think my children are strange or super intelligent let me say that they are just regular children who have a mother who likes Shakespeare. I choose carefully and we do a bit at a time. I make it fun by doing voices and other ludicrous things. I try to remember that Shakespeare's intention was to entertain (and make a living), not to write canonized literature. We approach the plays with that in mind. Are there any wonderful Shakespeare adaptations with beautiful pictures? I love beautiful books. So do my children.

The kids' adaptation of Beowulf sounds great! I just borrowed a (relatively) new adult adaptation by Seamus Heaney. Not having read ANY version before, I'm wondering if I ought to start with the kids' version...

I clearly remember (because it was SO gruesome) having a graphic novel adaptation of Macbeth when I was a kid. The comic format was actually a great way to bring a play to life.

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