Happy New Year, everybody. Like just about every reader who goes away on vacation, I brought to the Cape last week stacks of books in print, audio, and pixels but mostly disdained them in favor of a book I picked up at the house we were renting. It was a grisly Icelandic mystery--do the Scandinavians in fact publish any other kind? (I guess the Henning Mankells I've read were relatively bloodless--in more ways than one. Now, somebody go distract Mankell fan Lois Lowry before she comes over here and ritualistically gouges my eyeballs out, paints cryptic runes on my body, and nails me to the floor.)
The January/February Magazine is out and selectively up. You can read the BGHB speeches, check out some anecdotes about agents and find out what makes for a good sports novel. And I encourage you all to read and learn from Barbara Bader's portrait of Virginia Haviland, children's librarian to the nation. It's the first in a series Barbara is writing about the "second generation" of children's library leaders in this country; next up in the May issue is Augusta Baker. Barbara is currently doing preliminary research on the children's librarians of the 1950s and 60s in Cleveland and Pittsburgh; anyone with knowledge of pertinent people and places should write to her at bbader at earthlink dot net.