What’s in a Name?

Wendy Lamb (l.), v-p and publishing director of Wendy Lamb Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, was on New York Nightly News with Chuck Scarborough this past Monday, along with Betsy Buell (r.), lower librarian of St. Philip’s Academy in Newark. News anchor Gus Rosendale (center) interviewed the pair about Buell’s involvement with Gary Paulsen’s latest novel, Crush. The librarian won an auction to name a character in Paulsen’s book, and turned that prize over to her students; they chose the name JC Silva, after their school chef who was killed by a car in 2010. The author decided to name a second character after Buell, and dedicated Crush, in part, to her and to the kids at the school.

Mother-Daughter Act

A Whale of a Tale bookstore in Irvine, Calif., co-hosted an event at the Mission Viejo Library for Jodi Picoult (l.) and her teenage daughter, Samantha van Leer, who were on tour for their YA novel, Between the Lines (Simon Pulse). The signing drew more than 400 people, the first stop on a tour that kicked off in Anaheim, where they were featured speakers at ALA, and took them to Houston, Phoenix, Chicago, St. Louis, New York City, and Boston. While on tour, Picoult and van Leer also stopped by the Texas Children’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital to give away copies of Between the Lines and visit with patients.

Brewing Up Interest

Nearly 200 fans of St. Louis-area author Heather Brewer turned up for the launch of her newest book, Soulbound (Dial), the first in her Legacy of Tril series. Hosted by the St. Charles City-County Library District in partnership with local indie Main Street Books, the event proved particularly popular with aspiring writers, who asked specific questions about building characters and other challenges. Brewer was happy to offer encouragement and advice but also cautioned, “Do your algebra homework first.”


Author Kristi Cook (center) celebrated the release of her second YA novel, Mirage (Simon Pulse), with a party at New York City’s Books of Wonder. Here, Cook meets teenage fans, who are wearing homemade t-shirts in honor of Mirage and its predecessor, Haven, which came out in February 2011.