If you're reading this, I know you are passionate about finding great books for your kids. Each child has their own taste in books, their own sense of style, their own view of what hooks them into the world of reading. I'd love to share a few amazing resources to explore, if you're searching out book recommendations.
A Fuse #8 Production, by Elizabeth Bird @ School Library Journal
Elizabeth (Betsy) Bird is a Senior Children's Librarian at the New York Public Library's Children Center at 42nd Street. She's been blogging since 2006, and now writes the blog Fuse #8 for the School Library Journal. Betsy reviews new children's literature, has regular previews from publishers, and regular updates on what's happening in the world of children's literature publishing. She writes with style and humor, and is truly a blogger extraordinaire. SLJ has recently changed servers and blogging software, so be sure to note the new address for Fuse #8: http://blog.schoollibraryjournal.com/afuse8production.
To find out more about Betsy and the reader survey she did of the Top 100 Children's Novels, check out this interview from April 2010 for the Scholastic Channel.
Betsy saves all her past reviews on the Children's Book Review Wiki. There's a wealth of information there to explore.
ReadKiddoRead - by James Patterson
James Patterson, best-selling author of mysteries for adults such as The 9th Judgment, the latest in the Women's Murder Club, and the Maximum Ride fantasy mysteries for teens, has created a fantastic website for for parents, librarians, and teachers, and other children's book-loving souls: http://www.readkiddoread.com. The site is "dedicated to making kids readers for life;" Patterson and his team do this by bringing together a great selection of page-turners for a range of ages, from young toddlers all the way through advanced tweens and teens. Patterson's mission is to get kids hooked on books they can't put down, so they can develop an interest in reading that will lead them to other books that will launch them as lifetime readers.
I have been particularly impressed with the layout, site design and content of ReadKiddoRead. It's set up for great browsing, first by age level (with implicit reading levels), and then by either interest and genre. That intuitively fits the way parents and kids want to find books: I have a eight year old third grader, who loves fantasy. You'll find a selection of 30 books in this category, a mix of classics and new releases. Each book has a review that describes what's great about this book - the reviews are short enough to read quickly, but well developed enough to give you a real sense of what the book's about. And then there's a list of "If you love this book, then try" suggestions.
Do you have a resource that's great for finding out about books for your kids? Tell me more! Share the goodies with us.