We don't do stars...
We don't do thumbs...
We read children's books and grade them in 10 categories:
literary quality
descriptive ability
humor (if attempted)
illustrations (if present)
believability of characters
believability of situations
overall reading enjoyment

There is no grading curve. There are no points for classroom participation. There is no extra credit.
If you disagree, come speak to us after class.

The Grading System

A+.....this means (guess what) we think it's great. So great it surprised even us.
A.....this means it's pretty darn good. A book we'd recommend to just about everyone we know.
B.....better than most. Not exactly Shakespeare for kids, though, if you get our drift.
C.....mediocre. Like the color beige, it didn't stand out.
D.....we didn't like it. There were more bad aspects than good ones.
F.....it reeked of badness. We read it over and over when we are in dire need of hysterical laughter.
F-.....We're pretty sure Dante had a circle of hell for the people who wrote these...and a lower circle for those who published them.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Author Interview: Irene Latham

Tenner Interview Number 3 today: Irene Latham, author of LEAVING GEES BEND, due out from Putnam on January 7. Welcome, Irene!

CBR: What are ten words that best describe your book?

IL: heart-touching, historical, adventure, lyrical, southern, survival, quilts, midgrade, family, love

CBR: What is one of your favorite sentences or paragraphs from your book?

IL: "Mama always said every quilt tells a story. Every piece of cloth, every stitch and every bit of cotton stuffed between the seams tells a secret about the one who made the quilt."

CBR: Michelangelo once said, "What do you despise? By this you are truly known." What are ten things (smells, sounds, situations, etc.) you just can't stand?

IL: restaurants where the music is too loud to converse, politics, predictable movies, the fact that there's not enough time to read all the books I want to read, napkin fuzz sticking to my black pants, the way ink smears for us left-handed folks, how expensive printer ink is, nubby sheets, cockroaches, the inability (so far) to time travel

CBR: If you had to spend the rest of your life on a desert island, what fictional character would you take with you?

IL: Oh my. This is quite a commitment. But I think me and Newland Archer from Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence might have some fun.

CBR: Who are some authors that have inspired you?

IL: Katherine Paterson, Sharon Olds, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Mary Oliver and so many others.

CBR: What book of the past ten years did you enjoy the most?

IL: Gosh. The MOST? Impossible to say. But for a real reading experience, I enjoyed Griffin and Sabine by Nick Bantock

CBR: When you were ten years old, what did you plan to be when you grew up?

IL: A thoroughbred horse trainer (and my sister would ride our horse to victory in the Kentucky Derby)

CBR: If you could choose anyone, living or dead, what illustrator would you choose to illustrate your book?

IL: Garth Williams (knee-jerk response -- love his work on the Little House series)

CBR: What would be your main character's theme song/some songs on the soundtrack for your book?

IL: the movie them from Forest Gump

CBR: Could you give us any hints/teasers as to what your next project might be?

IL: I've got two in the hopper: another historical fiction set during the 1902 eruption of Mt. Pelee and a contemporary midgrade about a boy who lives at a zoo.

CBR: Thank you so much, Irene! For those of you who want to learn more about Irene and her books, you can visit her at www.irenelatham.com or www.irenelatham.blogspot.com or follow her on twitter @Irene_Latham.


Irene Latham said...

Thanks so much for having me! It was fun. :)

Debra W said...

Lovely interview! Irene is such a wonderful person and a very gifted writer! Thank you for posting this interview!