And Then What Happened?

Let the adventures continue! In the sequel to Charlotte in Giverny, a girl's journal records her visit to the City of Light in Charlotte in Paris by Joan MacPhail Knight, illus. by Melissa Sweet. The daughter of American artists living in France, Charlotte sees a marionette show in the Tuileries, visits the Louvre, attends an Impressionist art exhibition and celebrates her birthday at the Eiffel Tower. With reproductions of famous works by Monet, Degas, Cassatt and more, as well as watercolors by Sweet, this scrapbook celebrates the art and artists in France in the 1890s. (Chronicle, $16.95 48p ages 8-up ISBN 0-8118-3766-1; Sept.)

In The Whale, the second book in the Lighthouse Family series by Cynthia Rylant, with sepia-toned graphite illustrations by Preston McDaniels, the young mice Whistler and Lila come across a baby beluga whale who has lost his mother. They enlist the help of a cranky old cormorant named Huck to find the whale's mother in this sequel to The Storm, which PW called "a sweet, sea-inspired tale... [that] will keep readers turning the pages." (S&S, $14.95 64p ages 6-10 ISBN 0-689-84881-1; Sept.)

Stand back, Snicket fans, the latest Unfortunate Events are about to unfold in The Slippery Slope by Lemony Snicket, illus. by Brett Helquist. Violet and Klaus Baudelaire must climb the titular terrain as they search for their sister Sunny in the Mortmain Mountains, after she is kidnapped by—who else—the diabolical Count Olaf. Will they reunite? Will they find their way out? Read on and find out.... Also being released this month, a slip-covered edition of the launch title, The Bad Beginning: Rare Edition, along with a stand-up portrait of the calamitous cast. (HarperCollins, $10.99 352p ages 10-up ISBN 0-06-441013-7; Sept.; Beginning, $14.99 -051828-6; Oct.)

In the third book in the Breadwinner trilogy (The Breadwinner; Parvana's Journey), Mud City by Deborah Ellis, Afghani refugee 14-year-old Shauzia (Parvana's best friend) leaves the mud-walled refugee camp in Pakistan. Dressed like a boy, and accompanied by her dog Jasper, she struggles to survive and to reach her elusive dream—to travel to the sea and catch a ship to France. (Groundwood [PGW, dist.], $15.95 176p ages 10-14 ISBN 0-88899-518-0; Sept.)

In Sylvia and Miz Lula Maye, 10-year-old Sylvia found a 100-year-old best friend and met her daddy for the first time. Now, in Secret Holes by Pansie Hart Flood, illus. by Felicia Marshall, Sylvia decides to draw her family tree. But her momma's full of secrets, and she's not telling Sylvia anything. Then Sylvia finds some hiding places for money and important papers and uncovers the biggest secret of all. (Lerner/Carolrhoda, $15.95 128p ages 7-12 ISBN 0-87614-923-9; Sept.)

In Canaries and Criminals by Kelly Easton, the sequel to Trouble at Betts Pets, more trouble is in store for Aaron Betts. First, while researching a school project on the Birdman of Alcatraz, he winds up coming face to face with an ex-convict. Next, a turtle with a map painted on its shell turns up at his family's pet shop and seems to be of some value to a certain trio of criminals. (Candlewick, $15.99 128p ages 8-12 ISBN 0-7636-1928-0; Sept.)

In Swan Sister: Fairy Tales Retold, ed. by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, 13 authors transform traditional fairy tales into original stories. "The Girl in the Attic" by Lois Metzger follows a lonely, silent 14-year-old girl who hides away in an attic room, in a story with parallels to Rapunzel. In "Lupe," by Kathe Koja, a girl enters the dark woods and bravely faces a wolf and a mysterious witch, in a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood. Jane Yolen, Bruce Coville and Neil Gaiman are also among the contributing authors in this companion to the editors' previous collection, A Wolf at the Door.(S&S, $16.95 176p ages 8-12 ISBN 0-689-84613-4; Sept.)


Several books with American themes are making appearances this fall. In Defense of Liberty: The Story of America's Bill of Rights by Russell Freedman begins with the history of the document and its inspiration, and traces the ways in which these first 10 amendments to the Constitution have been applied to protect the liberties of ordinary citizens. From battles over the separation of church and state to stormy debates over gun control and the right to bear arms, the book demonstrates how the groundbreaking document led to advances in human rights, even as it continues to be a magnet for controversy. (Holiday, $24.95 208p ages 10-up ISBN 0-8234-1585-6; Oct.)

The paper-over-board America Votes: How Our President Is Elected by Linda Granfield, illus. by Steve Björkman, introduces many facets of presidential elections, with brief overviews on the history of voting rights for African-Americans and women, the types of voting machines now in use (including a sidebar about chads—"the tiny bit you punch out of paper with a hole-punch"—in the 2000 election), the role of the electoral college, the impact of TV in presidential campaigns and more. Brief timelines and biographies point out key events and players (Kids Can, $16.95 64p ages 10-14 ISBN 1-55337-086-4; $9.95 paper -087-2; Sept.)

The Fandex Family Field Guides series introduces the presidents' wives in First Ladies, with 50 die-cut cards joined by a pin that allows the cards to fan out. Featuring such fascinating subjects as Abigail Adams, who according to Harry Truman "would have made a better president than her husband"; Eleanor Roosevelt, who was known as "the First Lady of the World"; and Jackie Kennedy, who "captivated the public" with her dignity and sophistication (and whose portrait serves as the "cover"), each card features a full-color illustration of the First Lady and facts about her life. (Workman, $9.95 50 cards ages 10-up ISBN 0-7611-2944-8; Sept.)

The White House: An Illustrated History by Catherine O'Neill Grace takes a behind-the-scenes look at the White House, the building staff, the Oval Office, the First Family's living quarters and more. More than 200 photographs capture the people, places and events that are part of this famous building's past. Cutaway views and five gate-folds allow readers to "tour" the monument; brief interviews with such support staff as the pastry chef and the director of the Marine Band offer added perspective. Published in cooperation with the White House Historical Association, this book features an introduction by First Lady Laura Bush. (Scholastic Nonfiction, $19.95 144p ages 8-14 ISBN 0-439-42971-4; Oct.)

With his usual solid research and pen-and-ink and watercolor wash accompaniment, Don Brown examines the young life of Samuel Clemens in American Boy: The Adventures of Mark Twain. The author examines the boy's rebellious nature and the adventures that found their way into his books (the character of Huck Finn, for instance, was based on Sam's friend Tom, who was "ignorant, unwashed, and insufficiently fed; but he had as good a heart as any boy had," according to Sam); Brown also tells how Sam adopted his pen name from a term used by a steamboat crew to indicate the water's depth. (Houghton, $16 32p ages 4-8 ISBN 0-618-17997-6; Sept.)

Treasures, Redux

Two William Steig favorites lead the list of titles returning to bookshelves this fall. The pen-and-ink and watercolor master adds a colorful palette to his classic book of letter and number puzzles (originally published in 1984), C D C? Read the letter and number names and follow the picture clues to decode messages such as "C D C?" (See the sea?) or "N-E-1 4 10-S? N A Y-L" (Anyone for tennis? In a while). This new edition also adds an answer key at the end. (FSG, $16 64p all ages ISBN 0-374-31233-8; Sept.)

Grown-Ups Get to Do All the Driving re-emerges in a small gift-sized format. This chiding child's-eye view of the grown-up world notes that "Grown-ups say they were once children"; "Grown-ups always have to know what time it is"; and "Grown-ups can't run." Of the original publication (1995), PW said, "Steig delivers a litany of baldly stated, hilariously on-the-mark observations, proving he has retained an inside track on childhood." (Lerner/Carolrhoda, $9.95 48p all ages ISBN 1-57505-617-8; Sept.)

In another clever book of visual humor, Figures of Speech (1954) by Mervyn Peake, each spread features a drawing that represents a well-known turn of phrase (perhaps best suited to adults). A smiling gent carrying a bear on his back represents "grin and bear it" and a man submerging his heels in two water glasses is "cooling his heels." Colorful panels have been added to the original b&w original drawings. (Candlewick, $14 64p all ages ISBN 0-7636-2176-5; Sept.)

In Poinsettia and the Firefighters by Felicia Bond, Poinsettia is excited to be getting a room of her own. But she can't sleep because it's too dark. Despite her fears, her quick thinking saves the neighborhood from a fire. PW called Poinsettia "an endearing heroine," when the book was first published in 1984. (HarperCollins, $14.99 32p ages 3-7 ISBN 0-06-053509-1; Sept.)

Brave Bunny by Ruth Lercher Bornstein, a quiet, small-format picture book filled with poetic phrasing, first appeared in print as Indian Bunny in 1973. A young rabbit declares, "I'm going out into the world," and hippity-hops along forest, stream and meadow, meeting animal friends. Bunny fancies himself a Native American and pictures himself in the starlit night, beating a drum: "My friend the Owl will hear me. And when the moon is high and I crawl into my tepee, my friend will fly over to say, Good night, Brave Bunny." (Gibbs Smith [801-927-2156], $9.95 32p ages 4-8 ISBN 1-58685-282-5; Sept.)