Lemony Snicket

We Need Diverse Books: Can Children’s Authors End Publishing Industry Prejudice — and Change the Way America Reads?

As young adult novelists Ellen Oh and Lamar Giles sat together on a panel at a Virginia teen literature conference in early 2014, Oh relished the rare experience of sharing the stage with another author of color. She had already been thinking about an initiative to expand diversity in children’s literature, and that day she wondered: “Why can’t it be like this all the time?”

Both Oh and Giles had grown fatigued with the diversity discussion that repeatedly arose in the children’s and YA books (or “kidlit,” as it’s called) community, only to fizzle out again. Debriefing with Giles after the panel, Oh remembers telling him of her plan: “We have to do something, and we have to do something big.” She asked him, “Are you in?”

A few weeks later We Need Diverse Books, the social media movement that has grown into a well-regarded nonprofit in a matter of months, was born. The founders had already started planning their campaign when, not for the last time, an incident of industry racism gave them momentum. In April, BookCon — a subsidiary of New York-based publishing mega-conference BookExpo — announced a panel of superstar children’s authors that consisted of all white men, while the overall conference lineup was all white people, aside from Grumpy Cat. … Read More

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National Book Awards Go to Louise Glück, Phil Klay, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Jacqueline Woodson

On Wednesday evening, Louise Glück, Phil Klay, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Jacqueline Woodson took home the National Book Award, one of… Read More

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Netflix to Adapt Lemony Snicket’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’

Lemony Snicket’s masterful children’s series A Series of Unfortunate Events has already been decently adapted in 2004’s version directed by… Read More

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10 Children’s Book Series That Deserve TV Adaptations

With the success young adult books are having at the box office — The Hunger Games series, The Fault In Our Stars — it was only a matter of time before television stepped up its game and started to adapt more children’s and young adult books into TV series. There have already been some great successes (Pretty Little LiarsGossip Girl), and there are a few other book-to-TV projects in the works (Wondrous Strange and The Clan of the Cave Bear), but as far as I’m concerned, there can never be too many. Here are ten book series that deserve TV adaptations — or a second chance at one. … Read More

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“The Askew and the Beautiful”: Maira Kalman on ‘Girls Standing on Lawns’ and Collaborating With Daniel Handler

If you’re familiar with their work, the fact that Girls Standing on Lawns, the latest collaboration between artist Maira Kalman and writer Daniel Handler (known best as the pseudonymous Lemony Snicket), lives up to its title won’t be much of a surprise. It is, in fact, a slender book filled with old photographs and Kalman’s brightly illustrated interpretations of them, depicting girls standing on lawns, along with text provided by Handler. … Read More

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10 of the Best Holiday Books You Probably Haven’t Read

For many of us, December is the month of trotting out old classics: traditions, recipes, that one silver plate that’s been in the family for generations. Of course, it’s a time of classic holiday reading, too, so if you’re both the bookish and the celebratory type, A Christmas Carol, The Polar Express, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! are likely to be laying about, cookie crumbs mashed into the creases of your favorite pages, hot chocolate rings on the back. But what about the holiday books that don’t get quite as much love? This year, if you find you’ve gone over The Night Before Christmas one too many times, try swapping in one of these excellent and under-appreciated choices, which we bet only the jolliest among you will have… Read More

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Thirteen Terrifying Movies I Saw Before I Was Old Enough And So Am Now Permanently Scarred, by Lemony Snicket

Ready your nightlights — today marks the release of The Dark, a wonderful children’s book written by Lemony Snicket and illustrated by Jon Klassen. Irreverent and gorgeous, this book might just be a way for your little one (or you) to conquer an elemental fear. To celebrate the book’s release, we asked Lemony Snicket about some of the things that have scared him, and he sent us this list of the movies that terrified him the most — as a little kid and as a larger kid. Check them out after the jump, and let us know what scares you in the comments. … Read More

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10 of the Greatest YA Series of All Time

Yesterday, we were saddened to learn Donald J. Sobol, that the author the Encyclopedia Brown series, has passed away at the age of 87. We loved the Encyclopedia Brown books as kids, and the sad news sent us on a little trip down memory lane — but not just for Encyclopedia and Sally, for all the YA series that brought us joy as, well, young adults (and, we admit, since then). Just for fun, we’re going to look beyond the obvious choices, but rest assured that we consider The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lord of the Rings, the Harry Potter books, and The Hunger Games series to be among the best as well (even at the tippy top). It’s just that we think they’re so well established already that you really don’t need to see them on a list like this — you can probably just look over at your shelf. Click through to see a few of our most beloved YA (and older children’s book) series of all time, and if we’ve missed the books that made your younger self spin, please share the wealth and add to our list in the comments. … Read More

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10 Dysfunctional Literary Families We’d Secretly Like to Join

You know the quote: “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” Whether you believe Tolstoy or not, there’s something alluring about dysfunctional families, especially when they’re strictly literary. This week saw the release of Mark Haddon’s newest novel The Red House, the story of a family cooped up in a country house together for a week of what should be vacation, but ends up being full of family secrets, personal revelations, and complex dynamics. All that aside, we realized that we wouldn’t mind being part of their tragicomedy, and we got to thinking about some of our other favorite literary families that we sort of wish would adopt us. Click through to see which fictional families we picked, and let us know which ones you’d choose in the comments. … Read More

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10 of the Weirdest Children’s Book Authors of All Time

We don’t know about you, but here at Flavorpill, we were pretty weird kids — and now that the truth has come out, and we know that you really are what you read, we’re starting to wonder whether that wasn’t because of the books we were reading. Not that we’re sorry, or anything. Weird people are the best. One of the authors influencing our childhood strangeness was prolific children’s book and YA author Bruce Coville, who turned 62 this week, so to celebrate his birthday, we’ve put together a list of the all-time weirdest authors of children’s and YA fiction — in our own estimation, of course. Click through to read who we picked, and let us know if we missed your super-strange favorite in the comments — we’re always looking for new ways to get weirder. … Read More

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