This week, an author visits schools in sub-Saharan Africa; parade-goers keep all their ducks in a row; a mother-and-son creative team talk Tuskegee Airmen; an author shares the stage with her book characters; a school offers a gator-sized welcome to a visiting author; and an author steps into his own stories.
An International Author Visit
Tad Hills was chosen by the global nonprofit organization Worldreader to be the first author ambassador to tour schools in sub-Saharan Africa. The author and illustrator met with children from St. Mary’s School in Narok, Kenya, on May 13. Hills shared his stories and spoke to the students about creating characters and the writing and illustrating process. The school has been provided with 50 Kindle devices filled with books (including Hills’s own) that are rotated among roughly 400 students from grades 4-8.
Better Call Sal
Sally McCloskey, daughter of author Robert McCloskey, who wrote the classic picture books Make Way for Ducklings and Blueberries for Sal, dressed as her namesake for the annual Duckling Day Parade on May 8 in Boston. Paul O. Zelinsky also marched in the parade; the illustrator contributed art to the 75th-anniversary edition of Make Way for Ducklings.
Mother-and-son duo Carole Boston Weatherford and Jeffery Boston Weatherford visited Barnaby Manor Elementary School in Oxon Hill, Md., on May 9. They spoke to students about their book You Can Fly: the Tuskegee Airmen (Atheneum), written by Carole and illustrated by Jeffery, and shared historical details about the Tuskegee Airmen themselves. The visit was sponsored by the children’s literacy group An Open Book Foundation; they also donated books to the school.
A Very Stinky Musical
Lisa McCourt (center, blue scarf), author of the Stinky Face series, posed with cast members of the musical I Love You, Stinky Face at Stages Theatre Company in Hopkins, Minn. The play is based on McCourt’s story of the same title, about a boy who changes into a dinosaur, swamp creature, and other scary, smelly things, learning that no matter what, his mother will still love him. The production ran from April 17 through May 17.
Many Happy Returns
Caldecott Honor artist Aaron Becker, author of the Journey trilogy (Candlewick), which concludes with the August release of Return, paid a visit to the South Euclid-Lyndhurst branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library in South Euclid, Oh., to see the children’s area, which is themed after Journey. Kim van der Veen of the Burgeon Group, a firm devoted to creating interactive learning spaces in public libraries, designed the display.
Touring for his new picture book, Gator Dad (HMH), Brian Lies visited Odom Elementary School in Austin, Tex., on May 6, where he gave a presentation in conjunction with BookPeople. In case there was any question he was at the right place, Lies was met with this giant welcome sign.