All posts tagged: children

Naima Coster is back with a bold and moving tale of legacy, family, displacement, and rootedness in WHAT’S MINE AND YOURS, plus tips on writing character, developing setting, more

By Leslie Lindsay  Extraordinary tale of gentrification, equality, race, and legacy that begs the question: what are you leaving behind? ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Spotlight on family legacy, race, history Several years ago, I read and loved Naima Coster’s debut, HALSEY STREET, and fell in love with her voice and writing. Her sophomore book is so daring, so beautifully told, but also bold and passionate, exploring comforting companionship, siblings, home, parent and child, and so much more. Set in the foothills of North Carolina, WHAT’S MINE AND YOURS (Grand Central, March 2 2021) is beautifully written, in elegant and moving prose, but also rife with deep, perceptive description from a poet’s heart. There’s the “Black side” of town and the “White side,” school integration, and the resistance of residents. For Gee and Noelle, this integration sets off a chain reaction bonding the two together for at least the next twenty years. Families are split–in their desire to integrate, how they see it benefitting each family and race/culture. But there’s also mixed-race Latina individuals …

Apraxia MondaY: Keeping kids engaged with speech-language therapy after the therapy session through reading, I-Spy, Scrabble, more, plus tips on apraxia, teletherapy, more.

By Leslie Lindsay  Speech-language therapy doesn’t stop at the speech clinic. Here are some ways you can enhance & support what your child is working on at home.  ~APRAXIA MONDAY|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Spotlight: BETTER SPEECH.COM EXTENDING SPEECH WORK IN EVERYDAY PLAY & GAMES I’m so delighted to welcome this guest piece from the folks at Better Speech, an online portal for speech-language teletherapy, recognized by American Speech-Hearing Association (ASHA). As most you know, I am a big proponent of making speech fun while working it into everyday routines. There is so much that can be expressed and taught in your own home, out-and-about town, and even in nature. That said, we’re all spending much more time at home–not just because of the pandemic, but because it’s winter and the middle of the school year. Here are some great tips and ideas of things you can do right at home, probably with items you already have.  5 Ways to Support Your Child’s Speech Therapy at Home When your child is working with a licensed speech therapist, speech …

WHAT IF THE GHOST OF MARGARET WISE BROWN visited you? THE UPSTAIRS HOUSE by julia fine delves into the delicate postpartum period, children’s literature, and so much more

By Leslie Lindsay  A terribly haunting and visceral take on the delicate postpartum period, featuring the ghost of children’s author Margaret Wise Brown. ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ When I first learned of THE UPSTAIRS HOUSE (Harper, February 2021) by Julia Fine, I knew I had to get my hands on it. Not only does it feature ‘house’ in the title and cover, but it’s surrealistic, feministic, and provocative, melding present-day with the past, a genre-bending exploration of children’s literature, folktale, literature, horror, and more. Truly, THE UPSTAIRS HOUSE is a read unlike any other. Megan Weiler is home from the hospital after giving birth to a beautiful baby girl, her first child. Her husband, Ben is around, but not near enough, he must travel for work (in this sense, THE UPSTAIRS HOUSE reminds me a bit of Helen Phillips’s THE NEED), leaving Megan alone with infant Clara. Megan is physically exhausted and mentally drained plus, she’s still stewing on that unfinished dissertation, the one about midcentury children’s literature, specifically the life and contribution of Margaret …

APRAXIA MONDAY 2/4: Karli PRESS, CF-SLP joins us for a primer on Childhood apraxia of speech, sequencing, her fabulous infographics, why teletherapy is so great, toys for enhancing communication, more

By Leslie Lindsay  ~APRAXA MONDAY|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Spotlight: Sunflower Speech Therapy 2/4 Welcome, Karli Press, CF-SLP to the Apraxia Monday series! I am delighted to chat with Karli because she is so cool and positive and digs kids speech. Here, she put together this super-informative infographic about childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), which I shared recently, and it’s been making big waves among the folks who follow my SPEAKING OF APRAXIA Facebook page. I am so grateful for this because it really breaks things down. CAS is a complex disorder—unless you’re a practicing speech-language pathologist with additional skills and training, it’s a relatively rare speech disorder (typically) only briefly touched on in graduate programs. Still, there are researchers who are studying it and others, too who continue to learn about this sometimes baffling and rare motor-speech disorder. That’s why I love this graphic so much. It really breaks it down. Karli lives and works as a teletherapist in south Florida and the name of her speech clinic, SUNFLOWER SPEECH—I just love. Her tagline: “Never …

THE LOVELY & TALENTED ESTELI MEZA on natural disasters, homelessness, rebuilding; how children need to process feelings & be supported by loving, caring friends/adults + her artisic process

By Leslie Lindsay  Kind words, good cheer, and yet…Conejo is sad, restless, and just wants to find ‘home’ in this illustrated children’s picture book. ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ CHILDREN’S LITERATURE  Kind words, good cheer, and yet…Conejo is sad, restless, and just wants to find ‘home’ in this illustrated children’s picture book. Children’s author-illustrators are my heart. I think it’s because as a child reader, this is what shaped me, made me want to write. Here, in FINDING HOME (forthcoming from Scholastic, Jan 5 2021), Esteli Meza poetically and lyrically tells the story of Conejo, a little rabbit whose home blows away in fall storms. Off he goes seeking a new home. At each turn, he is met with a group of kind, caring friends–all forest animals–who offer insight and distraction…maybe they have a picnic or reminisce, play music, have a cup of tea. All of this is lovely and wonderful, but Conejo is not satisfied. Still, no home. Eventually, the story ends with Conejo in a new home, one which he has filled with recent memories of kindness and …

Debut author Ashley audrain talks about her ravishingly dark and twisted THE PUSH, about motherhood, the postpartum period, intergenerational trauma, family legacy + reading list, more

By Leslie Lindsay  Deliciously dark and juicy psychological drama–a DEBUT–you’ll be talking about long after you turn the last page, the issues and concerns surrounding motherhood, family history, genetics, and more.  ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ THE PUSH (forthcoming from Pamela Dorman Books/PRH January 5, 2021) is one of those buzzy–OMG–books you’ll devour in one sitting. Is it a conversation-started? You bet. Will have it have you puzzling out your own maternal history–going back generations? Yes, that too. Here, we meet Blythe Connor, a woman whose experience of motherhood is not at all what she imagine. Blythe is determined to be the warm, caring, generous mother she herself never had. Still, she can’t let go of the disturbing, nagging thought that her daughter, Violet is not like other children. Is something ‘off?’ She’s distant, defiant, stubborn, antisocial, angry. Is she dangerous? Is Blythe just exhausted? Is it because Blythe doesn’t have much of a mother figure and her childhood was distorted? And her mother’s childhood, too? Maybe. Here we examine motherhood in the most …

MALCOLM MITCHELL’S FABULOUS CHILDREN’S BOOK–MY VERY FAVORITE BOOK IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD, plus reading struggles, being a literacy crusader, more

By Leslie Lindsay  Have you ever struggled to find the perfect book? I know I have! And I’m a ‘reader.’ How about a child in your life? I’m betting so. This darling children’s book–with bold, bright illustrations–by football champion Malcolm Mitchell is sure to delight.  ~BOOKS ON MONDAY|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ CHILDREN’S LITERACY  Henley hates to read. When Henley is supposed to be reading before bed, he builds a castle with his sheets. Henley hates reading so much, he took a wagon full of books to the town swimming pool to find out how well they could swim. MY VERY FAVORITE BOOK IN THE WORLD (Scholastic, December 29) is super-adorable–the words, the illustrations–all of it, is so heartfelt and moving. It’s about being a kid who hates to read, but all of his classmates seem to thrive with a book in hand. It’s based on the real-life experience of football star Malcolm Mitchell, who says, “When I was a kid, reading was my biggest challenge. It was the thing that scared me most, because it …

INSTANT NYT BESTSELLING AUTHOR christina baker kline talks about her ravishing new historical fiction, THE EXILES, women convicts, mothers, writing, TREES & asks me a question, too

By Leslie Lindsay  A powerful, emotionally resonant novel that captures the hardship, oppression, opportunity and hope of four women’s lives—three English convicts and an orphaned Aboriginal girl—in nineteenth-century Australia. ~ALWAYS WITH A BOOK|WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS~ HISTORICAL FICTION SPOTLIGHT Gorgeous, sweeping historical novel about women convicts seeking refuge and freedom set in the nineteenth century England and Australia. AUTHOR OF THE PHENOMENAL #1 NYT BESTSELLER ORPHAN TRAIN Instant New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and Indie Next bestseller SEPTEMBER 2020 “20 Great Reads” List, Indie Next THE BEST BOOKS OF 2020, REAL SIMPLE Optioned for television by Bruna Papandrea/Made Up Stories (“Big Little Lies”) …and more… I fell in love with THE ORPHAN TRAIN and felt the anxiety and inner turmoil in A PIECE OF THE WORLD, and when THE EXILES was published (WilliamMorrow/CustomHouse, August 25 2020), I dove head-first into the lucid prose. THE EXILES absolutely swept me away.  Kline takes a trio of young women and makes them so whole, so flawed, so authentic, it feels like they are right there with you, …

THE PULL OF THE STARS A historical novel that is strikingly similar to our current pandemic, set in 1918 Dublin, by the bestselling author of ROOM

By Leslie Lindsay  Pregnant women quarantined in a Dublin hospital during the Influenza Pandemic of 1918. ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Historical Fiction Spotlight Barnes & Noble Book Club choice for August Reader’s Digest Book Club Pick Australian Women’s Weekly Book Club Pick  Oprah Magazine Best Book of Summer 2020 Chapters Indigo Best Book of 2020 AudioFile Earphones award for the unabridged edition I’m always alert to the work of the the lovely and talented Emma Donoghue, especially since I fell in love with her disturbingly good, ROOM. The Pull of the Stars (New York: Little Brown; July 2020), seemed to be vying for my attention, whispering, “Read me, read me,” when I came across this historical fiction set in 1918 Dublin. For three days, we are midwives in a maternity ward at the height of the Great Flu. There’s work, and risk and a claustrophobic sense of the world browning at the edges; and yes, it has so many parallels with today’s pandemic. In an Ireland doubly ravaged by war and disease, Nurse …

Chad Otis talks about his debut children’s book–OLIVER THE CURIOUS OWL–about his artistic process, living in a school bus as a kid, exploring the big wide world, curiosity, imagination, and being an over-caffeinated uncle.

By Leslie Lindsay  Darling children’s picture book about a little owl who goes on an adventure far from his home, asking more that just whoo-whoo. ~BOOKS ON MONDAY|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Every child–especially those around ages 2-4 love to ask ‘wh-‘ questions: who, what, when, where, and why. Especially why. Here, author/illustrator Chad Otis, brings to life the adorable owl, Oliver, in this charmingly sweet and funny tale of curiosity, OLIVER THE CURIOUS OWL (Little, Brown Young Readers, August 11 2020). Oliver lives in a tree in the woods with his mother and father and siblings…but they only ask ‘who?’ Oliver needs more. He wants to know: who lives in the faraway woods? Where does the river go? Why can’t I leave our tree? So one day, he and his little friend, Bug, go. They leave the safety of their nest and meet new friends–bats and beavers, alligators and seals, too. They try new things and eat new foods and maybe they get a little scared. But it all turns out okay in the end. OLIVER THE CURIOUS OWL is about getting …