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February 2007 Newsletter

February 2007

What's New on

Who's Turning 50?


Now in Stores: ON THE WINGS OF HEROES by Richard Peck

Author Talk: Brian Selznick, Author of THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET

The Cat in the Hat Turns 50!

NEA's Read Across America

Cool New Books for February

New in Paperback Roundup

Series Update: Warriors: The New Prophecy by Erin Hunter

Series Update: Geronimo Stilton

Series Update: Andrew Lost by J. C. Greenburg

Coming Soon: Books Releasing in the Next Few Months

This Month's Reviews and Features

Poll: Do You Recommend Books?

Question of the Month: What's YOUR Must-Read?

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Series Feature
Play a Trivia Game here
Word Scrambles

Who's Turning 50?

I can remember the first time someone read me THE CAT IN THE HAT. I sat thinking that all those rhymes were just way too much fun to hear, and it started my love of all things Seuss. I am betting ALL of you had this book read to you when you were young or perhaps you read it to yourself. Thus it's really fun to share that THE CAT IN THE HAT is celebrating its 50th birthday this year. 

Here is something that I recently learned about the book. Dr. Seuss used just 236 different words to tell this very imaginative story. Seriously. Make a list of them.  On Friday, to celebrate this very special occasion, people all across the country will be reading THE CAT IN THE HAT at 2:36 PM EST. Sounds like fun to me. You can read more about this later in the newsletter. I guess reading like this is easier than lighting 50 candles, or 236!

Whenever I see new books I always am thinking about which of these will be the ones that your grandchildren read. The books that will endure. At the same time, our poll and question this month asks children if they are someone who inspires their friends' reading choices. Have them answer our poll and question to let us know.

We have lots of new books to share this month including THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET, which was a book my son, Cory, loved. A few months ago he had a horrible cold and spent the day in bed reading this book, and he told me later it made being sick a whole lot better. Also, we have a very smart contest where our readers can win a Bucket of Books. This giveaway is celebrating THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY, a book that will be in stores any day now. Read on for how to enter. By the way, Cory thought this book was very imaginative and it had him checking how to do Morse Code. Why? Well, you'll just have to read it and find out.

We have changed the header at the top of and added lots more navigation to get you right to the content that you love. So check it out when you get a moment and note that we will be adding to the features that say "Coming Soon" in these next few weeks.

Lots more to read this month so I will stop here. But wait...

I have never been able to rhyme like Dr. Seuss though I sure have tried, but I cannot leave without saying this:

The Cat in the Hat turns 50
I think that's pretty nifty.

And I know I will be re-reading it at 2:36 on Friday. May I suggest you do that too?

Have a great month...let's see if March comes in like a lion or a lamb.

Carol Fitzgerald for


To celebrate the release of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY by Trenton Lee Stewart, has teamed up with Little Brown for Young Readers to come up with this totally smart contest that gives 25(!) lucky kids the chance to win a Bucket of Books stocked not only with copies of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY, but also with some of the coolest books coming out this spring from Little Brown for Young Readers. In a big and colorful bucket, winners will receive TWO copies (one for you and one to give to a friend) of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY by Trenton Lee Stewart, ATHERTON: The House of Power by Patrick Carman, HOW TO CHEAT A DRAGON'S CURSE as told to Cressida Cowell and VAMPIRATES: Demons of the Ocean by Justin Stomper.

Click here for all the contest details.

Now in Stores: ON THE WINGS OF HEROES by Richard Peck

When war is raging, heroes show up in surprising places...

ON THE WINGS OF HEROES is one of Richard Peck's finest novels --- a tender, unforgettable portrait of the World War II home front and a family's love.

-Click here to read an excerpt from ON THE WINGS OF HEROES.
-Click here to read Richard Peck's bio.
-Click here to listen to Richard Peck's podcast.

Click here to read a review of ON THE WINGS OF HEROES.

Author Talk: Brian Selznick, Author of THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET

Brian Selznick is the author of THE HOUDINI BOX, THE ROBOT KING and THE BOY OF A THOUSAND FACES, and has illustrated books for such writers as Andrew Clements, Ann M. Martin and Pam Munoz Ryan. His latest work, THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET, combines pictures and narrative to create an illustrated novel similar to a silent movie. In this interview, Selznick explains how the book evolved from his initial concept of a traditional novel and discusses some of the difficulties he encountered during the writing process. He also talks about his love of old French cinema, some of his favorite books as a child, and what he hopes readers will take away from HUGO CABRET.

Twelve-year-old Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the train station, Hugo's undercover life and most precious secret are put in jeopardy. Cinematic, suspenseful and full of heart, Brian Selznick's ingenious, imaginative new novel brings together magic, movies and machines, and is a true achievement in storytelling. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

-Be sure to check out our HUGO CABRET Giveaway on for your chance to win a free copy of the book.

Click here to read an interview with Brian Selznick and a review of THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET.


The Cat in the Hat Turns 50!

Random House Children's Books is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Dr. Seuss's THE CAT IN THE HAT with two new releases: THE ANNOTATED CAT, an exploration of the world's most famous cat and the man who created him, and THE CAT IN THE HAT PARTY EDITION, which includes a birthday card to send to the Cat.

- Click here to read our review of THE ANNOTATED CAT.
- Click here for more about THE CAT IN THE HAT PARTY EDITION.

Did you know that Dr. Seuss used only 236 different words to write THE CAT IN THE HAT? Random House Children's Books and Dr. Seuss Enterprises have partnered with First Book --- a nonprofit organization founded to give children from low-income families the opportunity to read and own their first new books --- to launch a national literacy initiative called Project 236, which promotes a nationwide read-aloud of THE CAT IN THE HAT on Friday, March 2nd at 2:36 PM EST in schools, bookstores, libraries and homes. The program asks kids, parents, grandparents, caregivers, teachers, librarians and community leaders: What can YOU do to make a difference?

- Click here to learn more about Project 236 and other Seuss-related events.
- Click here to find a Read-Aloud event near you!
- Visit Dr. Seuss's official website,


NEA's Read Across America

March 2, 2007 is the 10th annual NEA's Read Across America Day, sponsored by the National Education Association, Dr. Seuss Enterprises and more than 50 national sponsors (including the National Football League Players Association). Originally created as a one-day event to celebrate the joy of reading, NEA's Read Across America Day --- which culminates every year on the birthday of the beloved children's author Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss --- has grown into NEA's Read Across America, a nationwide initiative that promotes reading every day. The program provides children with motivation to read and delivers an important message: Kids who read --- and are read to --- do better in school and in life.

Click here to read more about NEA's Read Across America.


Cool New Books for February

February's roundup of Cool New Books includes SOUL EATER, the third installment in Michelle Paver's riveting Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series; ON THE WINGS OF HEROES, award-winning author Richard Peck's unforgettable portrait of the World War II homefront and a family's love; and THE SECRET HISTORY OF TOM TRUEHEART by Ian Beck, an enchanting adventure in which an ordinary boy must find the courage to rescue his six older brothers from the Land of Stories.

We're also featuring a number of baseball-themed titles to coincide with the start of the upcoming Major League season: the first installment in the Barnstormers: Tales of the Travelin' Nine series; OUT OF THE BALLPARK, a picture book from baseball superstar Alex Rodriguez; HEY BATTA BATTA SWING! The Wild Old Days of Baseball; and a sequel to the beloved poem "Casey at the Bat."

Click here to read our Cool New Books feature.

New in Paperback Roundup

February's roundup of New in Paperback titles includes SPIRIT WALKER, the second installment in Michelle Paver's adventure series Chronicles of Ancient Darkness about a boy who can talk to wolves; WILLOW RUN, Patricia Reilly Giff's moving companion to the Newbery Honor Book LILY'S CROSSING that centers on a young girl whose life has been turned upside down by World War II; and two delightful books by Megan McDonald --- JUDY MOODY DECLARES INDEPENDENCE, in which a visit to Boston puts the third grader in a revolutionary frame of mind, and STINK AND THE INCREDIBLE SUPER-GALACTIC JAWBREAKER, the second story to feature Judy Moody's younger brother in a starring role.

Click here to read our New in Paperback roundup.


Series Update: Warriors: The New Prophecy by Erin Hunter

The final book in Erin Hunter's exciting fantasy series determines the fate of all the Clans as the ThunderClan cat warriors recuperate from the deadly badger attack and power struggles strengthen. Will the StarClan prophecy come true? Will blood spill before the warriors finally find peace? Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to read our Warriors: The New Prophecy series feature.

Click here to read a review of SUNSET.

Series Update: Geronimo Stilton

WEDDING CRASHER: Geronimo Stilton #28 by Geronimo Stilton
When Geronimo is invited to his cousin's wedding, he can't believe his eyes. The invitation he receives is written in crayon and sealed with chewing gum. Geronimo is horrified. But that doesn't keep him from being dragged to the ceremony by his family. What a disaster! Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to read our Geronimo Stilton series feature.

Click here to read a review of WEDDING CRASHER.

Series Update: Andrew Lost by J. C. Greenburg

Andrew, Judy and Thudd have landed in the Australian rain forest. They must find a way to the river and Uncle Al, but they're still the size of bugs! As always, they face enormous obstacles that threaten their very lives. Will they ever reach Uncle Al? Or will they be shrunken Down Under for good?

-Click here to read our Andrew Lost series feature.

Click here to read a review of IN THE JUNGLE.


Coming Soon: Books Releasing in the Next Few Months

Curious about what books will be released in the months ahead? Then be sure to check out our Coming Soon section on We have titles for March through May listed. Please note that we have not included every book coming out, but rather some that caught our eye --- and that we thought should catch yours as well.

Click here to read our Coming Soon feature.
This Month's Reviews and Features

In this tender and timeless story, Newbery Medal-winning author Richard Peck recaptures life on the home front during World War II. Through the eyes of Davy Bowman, a boy from Illinois, we see what it was like to live through such uncertain times --- when neighbors congregate on front porches and real heroes are part of the family. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt.

-Click here to read an excerpt from ON THE WINGS OF HEROES.

THE ANNOTATED CAT: Under the Hats of Seuss and His Cats by Philip Nel
Random House Children's Books celebrates the 50th birthday of THE CAT IN THE HAT with this fascinating illustrated study of two books that changed the way children learn how to read. Included in THE ANNOTATED CAT is the text of both THE CAT IN THE HAT and THE CAT IN THE HAT COMES BACK, along with photographs, draft material and essays by Dr. Seuss himself. Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts.

BARNSTORMERS: TALES OF THE TRAVELIN' NINE - Game 1 by Loren Long and Phil Bildner
Just in time for Major League Baseball's 2007 season, BARNSTORMERS: TALES OF THE TRAVELIN' NINE leaps off the pages with Griffith, Ruby and Graham Payne and their father's magic baseball. Exquisitely illustrated and beautifully designed, Game 1 is the first book of a planned four-part series that promises to be a huge hit with young readers, especially those who love a good mystery or the game of baseball. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt.

SWORDBIRD by Nancy Yi Fan
When the tribes of Sunrise and Bluewingle become enemies, birds on either side sadly wonder what could have upset their old friends. Then a robin seeks the tribes' help, and the cardinals and blue jays realize there is a stronger enemy who threatens to destroy the once peaceful Stone-Run Forest. Reviewed by Sarah Sawtelle.

MR. CHICKEE'S MESSY MISSION by Christopher Paul Curtis
When Russell's dog, Rodney Rodent, jumps into a mural to chase a demonic-looking gnome and disappears, the Flint Future Detectives are on the case. Steven, Richelle and Russell enter the mural, only to find the mysterious Mr. Chickee on the other side. In order to find a way out, the detectives must complete a mission --- finding Rodney Rodent. Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts.

Why does everyone seem so scared? That's what Rex Norton-Norton (aka Rex Zero) wonders as he rides his bike through Ottawa's streets. It may look like the end of the world and sound like the end of the world, but for this smart and funny boy it's just the beginning of a brand new life. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

When nine-year-old Georgie Bishop learns that his family is about to welcome a normal-sized baby while he's losing his best friend and finding his small stature a difference that doesn't cut it in fourth grade, he struggles to grow up without getting any taller. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

A PICKPOCKET'S TALE by Karen Schwabach
In 1730, 10-year-old Molly lives on the streets of London and has to steal for basic survival. When someone turns her in to the authorities, the judge sentences her to be shipped off to America. She must adapt quickly to a very different kind of lifestyle, yet her heart stubbornly longs for London. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.

BELLA GOES HOLLYWOOD: Star Sisterz, Book 8 by Lana Perez
When Bella DeLuca gets a new message telling her to act like a princess, her life takes another unexpected turn, this time sending her off to Hollywood for a once-in-a-lifetime role in a blockbuster movie. But as soon as she arrives, disturbing things begin happening on the set. Reviewed by Paula Jolin.

Read our reviews and features here.


Poll: Do You Recommend Books?

Do you recommend the books you enjoy to your friends and family?

-I'm not sure

Click here to answer our Poll.


Question of the Month: What's YOUR Must-Read?

What book have you most recommended to people?

Click here to answer our Question of the Month.

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Keep reading! Until next week...

Booker T. Worm and Friends
The Book Report Network
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