Maggie the witch

The fate of children’s picture books was front and centre this week, starting with an article in the New York Times about picture books no longer being relevant for children. In fact, it’s the beleaguered publishers and frenzied parents who are questioning the validity of illustrated picture books. I’m no expert, having only been a child, never raised one, but I think I can say with some authority that kids, if given a choice, would rather read The Stinky Cheese Man than say, War and Peace. Yeah, I’m exaggerating, but is it possible that so-called ‘accelerated education’ only nourishes the parents ego, not the child’s intellect, imagination, and most importantly, a sustained interest in reading? It’s been a few years since I worked in a bookstore, but I can tell you that the picture book sales were steady. And even today, I was in the children’s section of a local independent, and there was one kid sprawled out on the floor, reading a picture book, and another in his mother’s lap, both of them engrossed in an Oliver Jeffers. It was all I could do not to step on children as I made my selections. Whatever opinion you hold, the article fueled some great discussions, and here are a few of the best:

Roger Sutton, editor of the Horn Book, had this to say about NYT article on picture books.

The best children’s picture books future generations may never read

Are picture books for kids fading or flourishing? Two opinions on this controversial subject:

Embracing the Picture Book –

And…the funniest, and most eloquent response belongs to the Boyz Read blog~FUNERAL FOR A PICTURE BOOK? Awesome!

And now that the issue has been resolved…here are a few tasty items about picture books that don’t involve their imminent demise:

From the New Yorker: The Berenstain Bears get an app and find God. Heh.

The story behind a lost, unpublished Dr. Seuss manuscript!

Three David Macaulay Books Relaunched~Castle, Cathedral and Mosque. What, no Yurt?

Robert Sabuda take note, you weren’t the first…by a longshot: A 1482 “pop up” book:

The printed book is not dead yet | Joe Moran (Not about picture books, but still mighty interesting.)

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