How to use the power of Disney for good!

I just came across this funny article on Buzzfeed about how to explain literary terms through Disney movies.  Bambi’s mom warning him about the dangers of men — Foreshadowing!  Arthur pulling the sword out of the stone and revealing his true identity — Anagnorsis!  It’s fun and might really be useful for kids who might get confused about what dramatic irony is (think poor Simba beating himself up about killing his Dad when we all know that it was really Scar!)

Check it out here.

School Library Journal is a fan of Nobody’s Secret

SLJ is an important review for me. I know several librarians who only have time to read (and purchase) the books with starred reviews. Plus, all their reviews are from librarians. So when SLJ stars my books, I’m delighted.  Here’s the whole review:

When 15-year-old Emily Dickinson meets and flirts with a handsome stranger, she feels the first flicker of romance. Then the young man is found dead in her family’s pond, and the budding poet is sure that he was a victim of foul play. Determined to see that justice is done, she and her younger sister, Vinnie, investigate and discover that he is James Wentworth, heir to a fortune from which his aunt and uncle have defrauded him. Suspecting murder, Emily sets out to solve the case, almost becoming a victim herself. Life in 1845 small-town Massachusetts is painstakingly portrayed throughout this suspenseful tale. Emily is extremely well drawn, revealing her enthusiasm for and intense curiosity about the smallest of life’s details, while minor characters have just enough depth to provoke interest. The fast-moving plot makes this a well-crafted page-turner. The dialogue rings true, both to the historical time and to the chronological ages and social status of the characters. The full text of “I’m Nobody,” as well as quotes from other poems, not only focus readers’ thoughts but also provide an easy introduction to the recluse’s poetry. The author’s note explains which of the novel’s details are based on fact. MacColl once again brings a strong female protagonist to life, revealing pertinent and interesting information about a literary figure.

Does your critique group make you cry?

My critique group is hands down the most important circle of friends I have. We have been working together for almost ten years. We argue, we compliment, we occasionally get very annoyed… and at least one of us cries on a regular basis.  We all got a kick out of this article about critique groups.