Thursday, September 16, 2010

New Books by Minnesota Authors & Illustrators

Fall is definitely here and so are many new children's books by Minnesota authors and illustrators!

Today I went to the store early. The kids' section has been getting out of control! So I rearranged the teen and middle grade books and created a new Minnesota table.

Here's a round up of some of the new kids' books by Minnesota authors and illustrators:

Picture Books:

BIG BELCHING BOG by Phyllis Root, illustrated by Betsy Bowen.
- Great combination of Phyllis' writing style and Betsy's woodcut illustrations.

- The Minnesota State Fair is over, but you can hang on to it all through Debra's book.

THE SNEAKY SHEEP by Chris Monroe.
- Chris Monroe, of Monkey With A Toolbelt fame, has done it again.

HENRY AND THE BULLY by Nancy Carlson.
- This summer I saw some of Nancy's illustrations at the Chicago Institute of Art. Way to go Nancy!

THE PRINCESS AND HER PANTHER by Wendy Orr, illustrated by Lauren Stringer.
- Lauren does a great job with this imaginative picture book.

ONE PUP'S UP by Marsha Wilson Chall, illustrated by Henry Cole.
- The perfect simplicity of Marsha's text makes me jealous and very happy for her!

Chapter Books and Novels:

MAMBA POINT by Kurtis Scaletta.
- Kurtis lived in Liberia for awhile as a kid so he knows what he's talking about. But, unlike the protagonist, Kurtis did not communicate with black mambas, which is a good thing. We're having a snakey MAMBA POINT event at the store on Saturday, October 30 at 11:00 am.

- This is the third book in the Julia Gillian series which takes place in Minneapolis.

BINK AND GOLLIE by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee, illustrated by Tony Fucile
- Just out, this fun collaboration between Kate and Alison is sure to be a hit!

- This is the first book in a fun, new series.

MAGIC BELOW STAIRS by Caroline Stevermer.
- Here's a new Victorian fantasy for middle grade readers.

- The two girl detectives are back with more mysteries to solve.

HAMSTER MAGIC by Lynne Jonell.
- Soon to be out. We're having a HAMSTER MAGIC event at the store on Saturday, October 16 at 11:00 am!

Wow! There are definitely a lot of great children's authors and illustrators from this state. If you're in the area, stop by Micawber's and check out our new display.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Dress Code

Last week I suddenly noticed that I was the only person who ever wears shorts to work. I had a flash of doubt - was I too casual, too unprofessional? Not only was I wearing shorts that very day, but had been all summer long! It's been hot, so I naturally reach for shorts. But, perhaps I had crossed a line. Maybe I was violating the "professional booksellers dress code!" So I asked Hans.

Hans, as always, listened to my question and gave me his thoughtful response. Yes, I was indeed the only one to wear shorts at work, but he did not see a problem. As he put it, "there is no dress code problem here."

He went on to say that he had only seen Tom in shorts once, and it wasn't at work. And he doubted that Karen ever wore shorts. Hans said he likes shorts but had decided a while ago not to wear them to work.

Oh no, I thought. Hans likes shorts and he's not wearing them. It's because he wants to be professional! Now I felt sure that all summer long I had been committing a huge bookselling faux pas!

Hans, seeing that I was still concerned, relayed this story: Before Micawber's, Hans, Tom and Karen all worked at The Hungry Mind Bookstore (later named Ruminator). The bookstore was located very close to a small, liberal arts college and they sometimes employed college students at the store.

One year, there was a college employee on staff that did cross the dress code line. And he gave them no end of trouble because he just wouldn't be convinced that he was doing anything inappropriate. His dress code error? His professional bookseller blunder?

He refused to wear shoes.

I guess my shorts aren't so bad after all.