Sky High Honors
The 44th Annual NAACP Image Awards, announced on February 1 in Los Angeles, gave top honors in the children’s book category to What Color Is My World: The Lost History of African-American Inventors (Candlewick), co-authored by Raymond Obstfeld (l.) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (center), and illustrated by A.G. Ford and Ben Boos. At right is Abdul-Jabbar’s agent Deborah Morales, who shared with the author and NBA luminary his second accolade of the night – the documentary award for On the Shoulders of Giants: The Story of the Greatest Team You’ve Never Heard Of, about the Harlem Renaissance, the first all-black professional basketball team in America.
Sing Out, Tim!
On February 5 in New York City, debut author and Broadway veteran Tim Federle kicked off his two-week national book tour for Better Nate Than Ever (Simon & Schuster), about a small-town kid who crashes an audition for E.T.: The Musical. He visited the Professional Performing Arts School for a master class and signing, with local bookshop McNally Jackson providing books for sale. Then he taught and signed books at an afterschool event with Rosie’s Theatre Kids, the arts education organization started by Rosie O’Donnell. The busy day concluded with an evening event at the Drama Bookshop, shown here; Federle read from his book and was interviewed by Thomas Schumacher, the Tony Award-winning producer of The Lion King.
Two for ‘Tea’
British cousins Sophia Grace Brownlee (l.) and Rosie McClelland, who gained fame in the U.S. by covering Nicki Minaj and Alicia Keys tunes on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, have returned stateside to promote Tea Time with Sophia Grace and Rosie (Scholastic/Orchard), as told to Orli Zuravicky and illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas. While in Los Angeles to tape another visit with DeGeneres, the perky pair had their first book signing, at the Barnes & Noble at the Grove on Saturday, February 2. Sophia Grace and Rosie answered questions while families in the audience snacked on pink lemonade and animals crackers.
A ‘Rowdy’ Gathering
Author John Coy (l.) celebrated the release of his latest children’s book, Hoop Genius: How a Desperate Teacher and a Rowdy Gym Class Invented Basketball (Lerner/Carolrhoda), with a publication party at the Red Balloon Bookshop in St. Paul, Minn. Lerner Publishing Group editorial director Andrew Karre (r.) brought along the ultimate industry insider – his infant son, Edmund. Coy, too, likes to keep things all in the publishing family – his wife is Graywolf Press publisher Fiona McCrae.