‘Cut’ to the Chase

Norwegian author Jo Nesbø may be best known for his crime fiction for adults, which stars hard-living detective Harry Hole. But while touring on behalf of that series, published in the U.S. by Knopf, he also found time to promote his lighter side – the comedic Doctor Procter books for middle graders, among them the most recent installment, Who Cut the Cheese? (S&S/Aladdin). During an appearance at Highland Park Elementary School in St. Paul, Minn., coordinated by Addendum Books, Nesbø spoke with some 200 third, fourth, and fifth grade students. The author answered questions from the audience and discussed how he got started in his career; offered advice on writing; and explained the nitty gritty of his work, such as why he chose to write about fart powder – which brings about a different sort of violence than is seen in Nesbø’s crime novels.

Really Rosy

Among the panels at last week’s National Council of Teachers of English convention, held in Las Vegas, was a session called “Where Do Poems Come From?” Sylvia Vardell, a professor at Texas Women’s University and an advocate for children’s poetry, organized the panel with Janet Wong (second from r.). Unfortunately, Vardell was unable to attend NCTE for the first time in almost 30 years, because she is undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Presenters from the panel – (from l.) Amy Ludwig Vanderwater, Mary Lee Hahn, Lesléa Newman, Irene Latham, Janet Fagal, Wong, and Laura Purdie Salas – showed sartorial support for Vardell by wearing pink.

Weather – or Not

Hurricane Sandy wreaked plenty of havoc in New York’s Hudson Valley, but that didn’t stop fans from turning out shortly after the storm to fete local author Kimberly Sabatini’s debut YA novel, Touching the Surface (Simon Pulse). More than 100 people were in attendance at the Barnes and Noble in Poughkeepsie on November 3, and the next day, Sabatini continued to draw a crowd, this time at Oblong Books & Music in Rhinebeck (pictured). Her paranormal story follows Elliot, a girl who finds herself dead – for the third time – and realizes she must face her past in order to move on.