February 2022 Issue #16
February 1, 2022
February 2022 Issue #16
Welcome to the sixteenth issue of The Simpsonian Muse. I am your scribe, Martha Seif Simpson, Author and Children's Librarian. As the header says, this monthly newsletter will feature:
- News – Mine as well as other interesting tidbits
- Views – A few photos from my world travels
- Stuff You Can Use – A mish-mash of activities, crafts, recipes, or whatever I am excited about sharing
If you missed the previous newsletters, you can click the button on the left sidebar on my website to catch up or click here:
Thanks for joining me on this adventure. I hope you will find something to inform and entertain you.
~ NEWS ~
January was such a busy month! The Youth Media Awards were announced at the American Library Association's LibLearnEx conference, and the Sydney Taylor Book Awards were read by Association of Jewish Libraries president, Kathy Bloomfield. As chair of the committee, I edited book annotations, wrote press releases for ALA and AJL, compiled booklists, and attended to a million details with the help of some very talented and devoted people. The announcement went off without a hitch, updated SBTA information was immediately available on the AJL website, and publicity for the awards was sent everywhere. I'm so proud of the books we recognized, the authors and illustrators we honored, and the team of people who made it all happen.
Now that news is out, I can officially tell you our selections:
The Passover Guest written by Susan Kusel and illustrated by Sean Rubin
How to Find What You're Not Looking For by Veera Hiranandani
The City Beautiful by Aden Polydoros
Nicky & Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued written and illustrated by Peter Sis
Dear Mr. Dickens written by Nancy Churnin and illustrated by Bethany Stancliffe
The Christmas Mitzvah written by Jeff Gottesfeld and illustrated by Michelle Laurentia Agatha
The Genius Under the Table: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain written and illustrated by Eugene Yelchin
Linked by Gordon Korman
The Last Words We Said by Leah Scheier
Whistle: A New Gotham City Hero written by E. Lockhart and illustrated by Manuel Preitano
The Summer of Lost Letters by Hannah Reynolds
Red and Green and Blue and White written by Lee Wind and illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky
A Queen to the Rescue: The Story of Henrietta Szold, Founder of Hadassah written by Nancy Churnin and illustrated by Yevgenia Nayberg
The People's Painter: How Ben Shahn Fought for Justice with Art written by Cynthia Levinson and illustrated by Evan Turk
Benny Feldman's All-Star Klezmer Band by Alison and Wayne Marks
Sorry for Your Loss by Joanne Levy
The Magical Imperfect by Chris Baron
The Light of Days: The Untold Story of Women Resistance Fighters in Hitler's Ghettos (Young Readers' Edition) by Judy Batalion
The Seventh Handmaiden by Judith Pransky
Boy from Buchenwald by Robbie Waisman and Susan McClelland
Why We Fly by Kimberly Jones and Gilly Segal
The winner of the Sydney Taylor Body-of-Work Award is Jane Yolen.
You can read the official press release at:
And listen to Heidi Rabinowitz interview me on The Book of Life Podcast:
But wait! There's more…
There is a Blog Tour for the winner and honor authors and illustrators during the week of February 7, 2022. Check out these exclusive interviews:
Shoshana Flax at The Horn Book - http://www.hbook.com/blogs/out-of-the-box/
The Passover Guest
John Schu at Mr Schu Reads - http://mrschureads.blogspot.com/
How to Find What You're Not Looking For
Simona Zaretsky at Prosen People (Jewish Book Council) - https://www.jewishbookcouncil.org/_blog/The_ProsenPeople/
The City Beautiful
Ronna Mandel at Good Reads with Ronna - https://www.goodreadswithronna.com/
Dear Mr. Dickens
Travis Jonker at 100 Scope Notes (School Library Journal) - http://100scopenotes.com/
Betsy Bird at Fuse #8 (School Library Journal) - http://blogs.slj.com/afuse8production/
Whistle: A New Gotham City Hero
Barbara Bietz at Jewish Books for Kids - http://jewishbooksforkids.com/
Genius Under the Table: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain
Mia Wenjen at The Pragmatic Mom - https://www.pragmaticmom.com/
Evalyn at Bookishly Jewish - https://bookishlyjewish.com/
Summer of Lost Letters
Vivian Kirkfield at Picture Books Help Kids Soar - https://viviankirkfield.com/
Nicky and Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued
Kayla Plutzer at Kayla Reads - https://booksandbloomies.wixsite.com/website
The Last Words We Said
Barbara Krasner at The Whole Megillah - https://thewholemegillah.wordpress.com/
Wrap up of all books
Heidi Rabinowitz at Book of Life Podcast - https://jewishbooks.blogspot.com/
Interview with the 3 winners
Thanks to all the bloggers and to STBA committee member Aviva Rosenberg for organizing it!
To read the afore-mentioned annotations of the 2022 Sydney Taylor Book Awards, as well as annotations for EVERY book recognized since the award's creation in 1968 and all the Body-of-Work winners (126 pages!), go to the AJL website:
So many wonderful books to choose from!
Did you know that February is also National Library Lover's Month?
According to the Every Day's a Holiday Calendar, other noteworthy February dates include:
- February 1 – Serpent Day
- February 5 – Weatherperson's Day
- February 7 – Ballet Day
- February 11 – Get Out Your Guitar Day
- February 12 – Lost Penny Day
- February 14 – Ferris Wheel Day
- February 16 – Innovation Day
- February 19 – International Tug-of-War Day
- February 21 – Card Reading Day
- February 22 – Cook a Sweet Potato Day
- February 26 – Tell a Fairy Tale Day
- February 28 – Floral Design Day
~ VIEWS ~
In March 2011, my husband, John, and I travelled to Barcelona for a few days. One of the places we visited was Park Güell, designed by Antoni Gaudí. We had to climb up a steep street to get there, but it was worth it to see the amazing architecture and gardens. Here are a few pictures we took there.
The walkway as you enter the park.
Buildings inside the park.
The park is on a hill. I looked down to take this photo of the buildings at the park entrance. I think they look like gingerbread houses, or something out of a fantasy book.
One area is surrounded by a large, circular bench that is covered in unique mosaics.
Behind it, there is an arched walkway that leads to a nature walk.
This is a closer view of the columns, which are constructed at an angle.
And this is what it looks like as you walk under them.
These are some other columns.
There's so much more to the park that I didn't capture in my photos. You can find more information about the park, including a virtual panoramic tour, on the official website:
And if you ever get a chance to go to Barcelona, you really should see it in person!
~ STUFF YOU CAN USE ~
Need some ideas for Valentine's Day crafts?
Here are some ideas from Brightly.com:
One Little Project has instructions for making a cute valentine ring with a pipe cleaner:
VeryWell Family has more ideas for making cards and decorations:
Have fun, and Happy Valentine's Day to you!
That'll do it for this month.
Until next time, remember to enthuse your muse!