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Charlesbridge Children's Books Blog

Hail Caesar! The Other One . . .

Posted by Cindy Ritter on

by Rob Chirico   Like so many changes in life, when I set out to write Not My Mother’s Kitchen: Rediscovering Italian-American Cooking through Stories and Recipes, my working title was “Escape from an Italian-American Kitchen.” My premise was a simple one: How I learned to cook after growing up in an Italian-American household where my mother brought love to everything—except cooking. The dear woman, now 96-years old, was a disaster at the stove—or, as I waggishly call her in my book, an “assassin in the kitchen.” Left to her own devices she laid waste to spaghetti, hamburgers, and even...

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Happy 100th Birthday, National Park Service!

Posted by Cindy Ritter on

The National Park Service turns 100 on August 25, 2016. In case you've ever wondered, "Why was a national park service important?", author Annette Bay Pimentel answers that very question in the back matter of her new picture book biography, Mountain Chef: How One Man Lost His Groceries, Changed His Plans, and Helped Cook Up the National Park Service, illustrated by Rich Lo: "In 1872 Yellowstone was declared the first national park. In 1911 President William Howard Taft recommended the formation of a national park service, but he failed to whip up enough enthusiasm among members of Congress. By 1915...

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Top 10 Surprises from a Yankee Editor in Germany

Posted by Cindy Ritter on

By Julie Bliven   In late June I traveled to Germany with seven other children’s book editors hailing from the US, UK, New Zealand, and Canada. Beginning in Hamburg and ending in Frankfurt, we met with about a dozen publishers to talk shop and learn about the German book market.   The trip was sponsored by the German Book Office of New York, which is co-financed by the German Foreign Office and is one of the Frankfurt Book Fair’s arms into foreign markets. The GBO encourages interest in German books by promoting rights and license sales and book exports through...

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The 2016 Summer Olympics: Ready, Set…Technology?

Posted by Cindy Ritter on

By Jennifer Swanson   The Summer Olympics are just about to start. Hundreds of athletes are converging on Rio de Janeiro for the most important event of their athletic careers. These athletes have trained thousands of hours, honing their skills, pushing their bodies to the limit over the span of many years for just this moment. They are focused on one goal: taking home an Olympic medal.   While of course the athletes’ preparation is paramount, the equipment they’ll be using is also very important. In my latest book, Super Gear: Nanotechnology and Sports Team Up, I examine how high-performance...

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Gardens—Nature, Science, and Surprises

Posted by Cindy Ritter on

By Ranida T. McKneally   A peculiar thing happened in our garden last summer. My family and I are avid composters, and adding to the compost pile had become a daily habit. Throughout the winter and spring, our banana peels, eggshells, and other kitchen scraps fed the scores of soil microbes and other organisms that break down organic matter—nature’s recyclers. As the days grew longer and warmer, bits of green began to poke out from the dark, heavy heap. First tender and tiny, the leaves grew. And grew…until they covered the entire compost bin (a homely, slatted wooden structure built...

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