Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Author Spotlight: Anna Dewdney

Anna Dewdney is a children's book author and illustrator. Her works include Llama Llama Red Pajama (2005), Grumpy Gloria (2006), and Llama Llama Mad At Mama (2007). And according to Reviewer's Checklist, she has another book being released in January 2008 called Nobunny's Perfect. And although her website doesn't give a release date, she does mention that there will be another Llama Llama book, this one called Llama Llama Misses Mama. You can read her biography here on her website. Her website is great, by the way, and has activities for little ones and information for grownups. What kind of activities? PDF activity pages! From Llama Llama paper dolls, to connect-the-dots fun, to word searches, to coloring pages, to a maze. You can find those files here. I haven't read Grumpy Gloria for myself, but her other two works I adore.

Dewdney, Anna. 2005. Llama Llama Red Pajama.

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney is one my favorite favorite picture books. The reason I haven't blogged about it is simply that I hadn't started my blog yet when it was released. And sometimes it does take a little while to go back to old favorites when there are so many new books being released each month. But with the upcoming release of Llama Llama Mad At Mama in September, I thought now would be a perfect time.

Baby Llama with some separation anxiety issues. As his mother is putting him to bed, he is happy and soothed. But as soon as she leaves the room, he begins to miss her.

Llama llama
red pajama
feels alone
without his mama.

Baby Llama wants a drink.
Mama's at the kitchen sink.

Llama llama
red pajama
calls down to
his llama mama.

Mama says
she'll be up soon.
Baby Llama hums a tune.

But as the Mama Llama becomes distracted with household tasks and phone calls, Baby Llama goes from a little fretting to a full-out llama drama. But soon all is calm once again as Baby Llama is reassured of his mama's loving care as he drifts off to sleep.

I love the rhymes. I love the rhythms. I love the flow of it all. It's just so fun to read aloud. So fun. And I love the illustrations.

I will be reviewing Llama Llama Mad at Mama very soon. It will be released in September 2007.


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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

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