Saturday, October 29

The Why Chromosome - Library Booster Boxes

Following our previous events, Book by Book and Bridge to Books supporters have collected another great bunch of titles that will go to a lucky school or public library at The Why Chromosome! Thanks so much to Penguin Books for Young Readers, Abrams Books, and our individual donors for helping us put more books in the hands of kids.

For Young Adult readers:

Alex Rider: Scorpia Rising by Anthony Horowitz
Almost True and When I Was Joe by Keren David
Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
Bamboo People by Mitali Perkins
The Batboy and The Big Field by Mike Lupica
Blade: Playing Dead by Tim Bowler
Blood Red Road by Moira Young
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Creating a Graphic Novel by Nat Gartler and Steve Lieber
Department Nineteen by Will Hill
Dull Boy by Sarah Cross
Episodes: My Life as I See It by Blaze Ginsberg
Fallout by Ellen Hopkins
Hunger: Gone, Book 2 by Michael Grant
The Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith
The Painted Boy by Charles de Lint
Pendragon Book 10: The Soldiers of Halla by D.J. MacHale
Return to Treasure Island by John O’Melveny Woods
A Scattering of Jades by Alexander C. Irvine
Small Steps by Louis Sachar
Super Human by Michael Carroll
Troll’s Eye View ed. by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
Un Lun Dun by China Mieville

For Middle Grade readers:

Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko
Alex Rider: Scorpia Rising by Anthony Horowitz
The Best of John Bellairs 2 (The Johnny Dixon Mysteries) by John Bellairs
The Clockwork Three by Matthew J. Kirby
Crows and Cards by Joseph Helgerson
The Emerald Casket (Archer Legacy) by Richard Newsome
Gideon: The Cutpurse by Linda Buckley-Archer
Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows (QP) by J. K. Rowling
Heroes of the Valley by Jonathan Stroud
Kaimira: The Sky Village by Monk & Nigel Ashland
The Last Treasure by Janet S. Anderson
Masterpiece by Elise Broach
My Life as a Book by Janet Tashjian
Slob by Ellen Potter
Standard Hero Behavior by John David Anderson
The Wizard Heir by Cinda Williams Chima

More titles may be added tomorrow... if you are attending the event, you absolutely may contribute a title or two to these library booster boxes! They just have to be age-appropriate, hardcover, and recent or classic titles.

Each attendee will be able to "vote" by raffle ticket for a school or library represented at the event. More details will be available at the event sign-in table.

Sunday, October 23

2011 Author Feast and Trade Show

Yesterday, the Southern California Indpendent Booksellers Association (SCIBA) hosted their annual Author Feast and Trade Show at the Hilton Long Beach Hotel.  With over 200 booksellers, publisher reps, and book lovers in attendance, it was a bit like Christmas for bibliophiles.  Alethea and I drove down to attend part of the day and ended up staying until nearly the very end. 

Below is a list of everyone that was there yesterday that has some connection with Bridge to Books:

Our Bookstore Friends:
Andrea Vuleta - Mrs. Nelson's Bookstore
Maureen Palacios - Once Upon A Time
Kris Vreeland - Once Upon A Time
Candace Moreno - San Marino Toy and Book Store
Leanna Herrera - Mysterious Galaxy Redondo Beach
Morgan Turnage - Vromans, Kids Department
Steven Ross - Vromans, Kids Department
Kasey Komai - Vromans, Kids Department
Jessica Dobson - Whale of a Tale Children's Bookshoppe

Our Publisher Reps:
Kelly Stidham - Simon & Schuster
Nicole White - Penguin
Erin Zlotnik - Random House

Our Teacher and Librarian Friends:
Cindy Beggs
Cathy Blackler
Caroline Gill
Tatiana Guyer
Anita Knight

Our YABC, Writer and Blogger Friends:
Thuy Lam (RNSL Nite Lite)
Non Wels (Subject + Verb)
Katie Altman (Bookyurt)

Our SoCal Author Buddies:
Andrew Smith
John Stephens
Jessi Kirby
Marie Lu
Katie Alender
Jessica Brody
Mary Pearson
Alyson Noel

Nicole White
True, it was very exciting seeing Oliver Jeffers (Stuck) and Maggie Stiefvater (Scorpio Races) present at lunch.  And the evening with Brian Selznick (Wonderstruck) as Keynote speaker was priceless.  However, there really was something beyond special when Nicole White (Sales Rep for Penguin) received the Award for Book Rep of the Year and Andrew Smith received an award for his book - Marbury Lens.  It felt a little like close family was being recognized.

More thank you's to Andrea Vuleta from Mrs. Nelson's Books who has been the President of the SCIBA Board of Directors for the last two years.  -- I told her that I thought she knew how to throw a fantastic party.  But according to her, the secret is to have great people and occasionally use the "mom voice" to keep everyone moving in the right direction.

If you are in Southern California, SCIBA hosts a Literacy Dinner for Teachers and Librarians every February.  Keep an eye on SCIBA's home page for when registration opens for the Dinner.  Hope to see you there.

Sunday, October 2

The Bridge to Books QR-Tee

This is what Alethea'll be wearing at the OC Children's Book Fest today:

Curious about QR codes?

You can use a smartphone app to read the code--it'll take you to the designated web page.

(Go on, try it--you can scan it from your computer screen.)

Just for today, Alethea won't mind if you use your camera to snap at something behind her back ;D

Bridge to Books supporters, you can wear this too! 

Just print it on a T-shirt transfer and you're ready to go.

Friday, September 30


Alethea's been having some pretty productive bouts of insomnia.

Did you know you can print your own copies of some of our posters? Thanks to, our favorite poster-printing service, you can print posters quickly and inexpensively. The quality is great, and even their customer service emails are funny!

You can print our Graphic Guise poster here.

You can grab our YA in Bloom poster here.

Here's a sneak peek at the posters for our upcoming events:

Thanks a lot, Posterbrain!

Wednesday, September 28

The Why Chromosome - Meet Our Special Guests

What: The Why Chromosome: Why Boys Do Love Books (main post) [BUY TICKETS]

When: Sunday, October 30 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm | Add this to your

Where: Mrs. Nelson's Toy and Book Shop, 1030 Bonita Avenue, La Verne, CA 91750

Why: A special gathering of authors and readers to talk about books, boys, and sharing a love of reading

Who: Who, indeed!

Andrew Smith - @marburyjack
Andrew Smith is the author of Ghost Medicine (2008), In the Path of Falling Objects (2009), and The Marbury Lens (2010).

Each of these novels has been awarded “Best Fiction for Young Adults” by the American Library Association.

His most recent release, Stick, is also nominated for the award in 2012.

Andrew Smith lives in the mountains of Southern California, where he raises horses.

His website is

Greg van Eekhout - @gregvaneekhout
Greg van Eekhout has held a number of day jobs, from telemarketer to English teacher to educational media developer, none of which he ever enjoyed as much as writing.

He writes novels both for adult and middle-grade audiences.

He lives in San Diego near the beach, where he once found a human leg that turned out to be merely a rather large squid.

Find him online at
G. Neri - @g_neri
G. Neri is the 2011 Coretta Scott King Honor-winning author of Yummy, and a two-time American Library Association Notable Book honoree.

In 2010, he was the recipient of the International Reading Association’s Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award for Chess Rumble. His novels for teens include Surf Mules and his latest book, Ghetto Cowboy.

He has been a filmmaker, animator and new media producer and was one of the founding members of the Truth anti-smoking campaign for teens. 
He lives on the Gulf coast of Florida with his wife and daughter and likes to troll for alligators. Check out his

Jonathan Auxier - @jonathanauxier
Jonathan Auxier is the author of Peter Nimble & His Fantastic Eyes, which was recently named an ABA 2011 New Voices pick!

He lives outside Los Angeles with his wife and their adorable pet umbrella (which doesn't get nearly enough exercise).

Find him online at
John Stephens
John Stephens is the author of The Emerald Atlas, the first installment in the middle-grade fantasy trilogy The Books of Beginning.

With a background in television writing and credits to such popular TV shows as Gossip Girl, Gilmore Girls, and The OC, John Stephens has successfully turned his talents to novel writing.

In The Emerald Atlas, he seamlessly weaves action, wonder, laugh-out-loud humor, suspense, and pathos, telling the gripping story of three young siblings.

The Emerald Atlas debuted at #5 on the New York Times bestseller list in its first week on sale. 
Find out more about John and his book at

Allen Zadoff
Allen Zadoff is the author of My Life, the Theater and Other Tragedies.

His debut young adult novel, Food, Girls, and Other Things I Can't Have, was the recipient of the Sid Fleischman Humor Award from the SCBWI.

 A former stage director, he is a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard University's Institute for Advanced Theater Training.

He is currently at work on a third novel for Egmont which will be published in 2012. 
Visit him on the web at

What are you waiting for? Sign up for this event here.

Teachers and Librarians Schmooze with Us!

We are very excited to announce the next round of Schmoozes for 2012!

Teachers, librarians, and parents, come and chat with us about teaching, literacy, & many creative ways to connect kids with books.

Tickets are $5 each. Light snacks and drinks will be served. Attendees will get a shopping discount during the event, a goodie bag (while supplies last), and will also be entered into a raffle for book prizes.

Non-Fiction Picture Books
Wednesday, March 14, 6:30 pm
   Kidspace Museum |
   480 North Arroyo Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91103
   Tel 626 449 9144
   Featuring special guest, Marianne D. Wallace
   Author of the America’s Ecosystems series

Spring into Summer Reading
Thursday, April 19, 6:30 pm
   Vroman’s Bookstore |
   695 East Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena CA 91101
   Tel 626 449 5320 (ask for Kids Dept.)
   Guest authors to be announced

Any ticket funds not used for the event will go to Book by Book (a nonprofit).

For more info, please email

Please help us spread the word! 
If you know anyone interested in literacy activities and ideas, please forward them to this link, or download and share this PDF flyer. Tweet it and share it on Facebook and Google+! Thanks :D

Shortlink to this post:

Past Schmoozes:

How to Host a Literacy Café
Wednesday, February 22, 6:30 pm
   Once Upon a Time Bookstore |
   2207 Honolulu Avenue, Montrose CA 91020
   Tel 818 248 9668
   Featuring special guest, Katherine Applegate
   Author of The One and Only Ivan

Tuesday, September 27

More Upcoming Events

Our calendar is just packed!

Here are some of the book events happening in Southern California in the next couple of months. You can also check our Google Calendar to see where we'll be!

SUN - October 2, 2011 - Orange County Children's Book Festival
Starts at 9:30 am (ends at 4:00 pm)
Orange Coast College [MAP]
Event Schedule [GUIDE]
Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Yelp

SUN - October 2, 2011 - West Hollywood Book Fair
Starts 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
West Hollywood Library and Park [MAP]
Event Schedule [GUIDE] [KIDS] [TEEN]

SUN - October 2, 2011 - Author Wendy Mass at Once Upon a Time
Starts at 4:00 pm
Once Upon a Time Bookstore [MAP]
2207 Honolulu Avenue, Montrose CA 91020

THU - October 6, 2011 - Becca Fitzpatrick, Moira Young, & Elizabeth Miles
Starts at 7:00 pm (ends at 9:00 pm)
Once Upon a Time Bookstore [MAP]
2207 Honolulu Avenue, Montrose CA 91020

FRI - October 7, 2011 - Becca Fitzpatrick, Moira Young, & Elizabeth Miles
Starts at 5:00 pm (ends at 7:00 pm)
Mrs. Nelson's Toy & Book Shop [MAP]
1030 Bonita Avenue, La Verne, CA 91750

SUN - October 9, 2011 - Pen Fatale YA Group
Alyson Noel, Gabrielle Zevin, Jessica Brody, and Mary E. Pearson
Starts at 3:00 pm
Vroman's Bookstore [MAP]
695 E. Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena CA 91101

MON - October 10, 2011 - Pen Fatale YA Group
Alyson Noel, Gabrielle Zevin, Jessica Brody, and Mary E. Pearson

Starts at 5:00 pm (ends at 7:00 pm)
Carnegie Cultural Center @ the Upland Public Library [MAP]
123 East D Street, Upland, CA 91786

FRI - October 14, 2011 - Pasadena Art Night - Stars at KidSpace Museum
Starts at 6:00 pm (ends at 10:00 pm)
KidSpace Museum [MAP]
480 N. Arroyo Blvd, Pasadena CA 91103

List is in progress! Check back in a bit for even more events :s

More events at
Mrs. Nelson's Toy & Book Shop    |    Once Upon a Time Bookstore     |     Vroman's Bookstore

Saturday, September 24

Banned Books Giveaway Hop - Contest

Thanks so much to Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not a Writer and Jen of I Read Banned Books for hosting this blog hop.


To celebrate Banned Books Week, we will order a banned book of the winner's choice (from for a lucky reader in the US or Canada!

The winner will also get one of our Live to Read, Read to Live posters.

Purchases of this poster help to support our literacy events
and our pals at

The winner of this contest gets one for free!
See the Rafflecopter widget below for the details. Please DO NOT leave personal info in the comments section--the Rafflecopter widget will collect your contact info so we can tell you if you have won.

The winner gets to choose their book prize (within the guidelines stated below) and will be notified by email through Rafflecopter.

Don't forget to visit the other blogs on this blog hop!

Monday, August 22

The Why Chromosome: Why Boys Do Love Books*

The Why Chromosome is an author event and book signing for readers, writers, bloggers, and educators interested in middle grade and young adult literature. Our special focus will be on boys and encouraging their love of reading.

When: Sunday, October 30, 2011 - 1:00 - 4:00 pm

Where: Mrs. Nelson’s Toy & Book Shop, 1030 Bonita Avenue, La Verne, CA 91750 | MAP
TEL (909) 599-4558 // email for info:

What: $12.50 will provide one person food/drink and a swag bag. Excess funds will be donated to Book by Book. 

How: Purchase your ticket here for $12.50.
You can also make a reservation at Mrs. Nelson's Toy & Book Shop--visit them in person or call 909-599-4558.

Buy Tickets for The Why Chromosome

Who will be there? 
Author guests include:

Andrew Smith

Greg Van Eekhout

Allen Zadoff
Author of Stick and
The Marbury Lens
Author of The Boy at the End
of the World
Author of My Life, The Theater,
and Other Tragedies

Jonathan Auxier
Photo by Elena Seibert 2010

John Stephens
G. Neri
Author of Peter Nimble 
and His Fantastic Eyes
Author of The Emerald Atlas
Author of Ghetto Cowboy

Unfortunately, Mark Jeffrey has a family emergency and may not be able to join us :(

- - -
Links to updates will be posted here.

#1 | Meet our special guests (author bios)
#2 | Download the event flyer here (PDF)
- - -


Are authors who are not official guests welcome?
Of course, you are welcome to come as a regular attendee--you’ll get a special mention in the program if you let us know the details (your book(s), website, contact info, etc)... Just email us at!

I’m an author/publisher/publicist and I think your audience would love to hear about [insert book title here]. What can you do for me?
Get in touch with Alyson and Alethea by emailing and we can discuss it. We welcome swag (bookmarks, bookplates, etc.), raffle prizes, ARCs, and finished copies for the Library Booster Box and are also looking for titles to highlight at the event.

What food are you providing?
Guy food... think hot dogs, brownies, popcorn... if you are attending and have a dietary restriction (vegetarian, vegan, etc.) make sure you fill out the form (the link will be in your receipt email) to let us know so we can plan accordingly. A variety of beverages will be available.

I’m not sure I want to attend yet. Can I just get updates on what’s happening?
Sure! Just sign up for our events newsletter--you’ll get a weekly update.

What is Book by Book?
Founded by Amber Lessa, Book by Book provides new and interesting books for schools in the Los Angeles area that have had their budgets slashed :( Visit for more info! 

At the luncheon, each ticket holder will be able to enter to win a Library Booster Box for a local middle or high school of their choice, filled with recent hardcover books! Ballots will be provided at the event. So far we will be giving away one Young Adult and one Middle Grade box... we might give away more, depending on how many books we collect!

I want to volunteer. How can I help?
We need both in-person and online volunteers. If you can help us online, help us spread the word! Link to using the hashtag #yboysread and mention @bridgetobooks.

Are you on Pinterest? You can help us fill up our Pinterest board with boy/book articles and links.

If you would like to volunteer in person, get in touch with Alyson and Alethea by emailing In the email subject please write TWC2011-volunteer.

Interested in sponsoring our event?
Email Alyson [] if you are a publisher, publicist, or author with ARCs, swag, raffle items or othe giveaways for the event. In the email subject please write TWC2011-sponsor.

Email Alethea [] if you would like to advertise your book/education-related item in the event program. The event program will have a run of 250 copies and reach a variety of readers (kids, parents, educators, librarians, administrators, authors, publishers, bookstore customers). It will also be published online. In the email subject please write TWC2011-ads.

You can also donate cash on Wepay or donate a book for the Library Booster Box.

*Thanks to Andrew Smith for the event name and to Andrea at Mrs. Nelson's for proposing the event theme.

**More Questions? Email Alethea - frootjoos [at] gmail [dot] com. And watch this spot for more info!

Sunday, August 21

Graphic Guise - Thank you's Part I

After a little sleep and a little debriefing, now is the time to start thanking people for helping to make Graphic Guise: Books Undercover such a successful event. As you can see from the title, it is going to take us a few posts to thank everyone.

First up, thank you's to all of our author/illustrators: Kazu Kibuishi, Bob Boyle, James Burks, and Dan Santat.  They are some of the nicest guys that you will ever meet.  And even more importantly they were fabulous with the kids who attended the event.

James Burks with Fourth and Fifth Graders.

Each of our author/illustrators spent time talking to small groups of children about their individual books and projects and gave children sneak peeks into their art journals. Just to give everyone an idea of the event here are some pictures of these amazing guys in action.

Bob's Sketchbook
Kazu Kibuishi brought his iPad and children were able to watch a book trailer for Amulet 4 The Last Council which will be out on September 1, 2011 and even get a chance to learn a little bit about Book 5.

Here is James Burks providing drawing feedback to a student during studio time.  I know that if I was 10 and had a chance to work with one of my favorite authors or illustrators this would be a memory I would never forget.

Here one of our participants is deeply focused on her own creative process.  Children were provided with blank journals which they got to keep.

Bob Boyle is shown here as he interacted with a group of second and third graders around the development of stories and yes, he is doodling right on the butcher paper. 

Dan Santat chatted with the large group about his art work and some special details about his picture book Oh No! or How My Science Project Destroyed the World.

In a down moment, a few of Kazu's adult fans got to listen to him speak about his artwork.

At the end, our team of guys signed books and journals often times personalizing them with special drawings.

Thank you Armory Center for the Arts for letting us use such a great space as your studio.  It provided the perfect atmosphere for our event.

Thank you to Katie (Young Adult Book Club), Cathy (@cathy_blackler on twitter) and Yukari (@rblib on twitter) for the fabulous pictures.
Yukari had a break from picture taking and kid wrangling to receive a raffle bag.
 Next post - A thank you to our publisher friends.