Junior News

News from the realm of Square Books Junior

Kate DiCamillo comes to Oxford and Square Books

Saturday dawned gray and gloomy, but that did not deter Oxford visitors from seeing baseball, softball, Ole Miss graduation -- and Kate DiCamillo!  Over one hundred-fifty of Square Books Jr.'s favorite readers and their parents gathered at Off Square Books to hear Kate DiCamillo read from and talk about her award-winning books for children.  

Ms. DiCamillo, or Kate, as anyone who has met her will feel comfortable calling her, began by reading from the Josette Frank Award winner and Newbery Honor book BECAUSE OF WINN DIXIE.  As fond as we are of that book and the movie made from it, hearing Kate read the first chapter was a thrill and seemed even funnier than we remember.

Taking questions from the audience, Kate paraphrased Ray Bradbury in saying that writing a novel is like "...jumping off a cliff and building your wings on the way down."  She added that in writing one of her most recent books, THE MAGICIAN'S ELEPHANT, she learned that one could also, by writing, "..build your own ladder out of the pit."

Her advice to aspiring writers?   "Read, read, read."   What she would say to all young people?   "Read, read, read."    Where she got her ideas and how she started?   "Reading."    She indulged her enthusiastic audience by reading from her Newbery Award winner, THE TALE OF DESPERAUX, and TIGER RISING when asked.  

Kate patiently signed books for everyone who asked, and returned after lunch (she was thrilled to dine at City Grocery) to sign orders for those who could not be there and for Jr. stock.  All  went away happy, hoping she will return to Oxford with her next book, and, more importantly, hoping that she will keep writing her magical stories.  Thank you Kate DiCamillo, and thank you Jennifer Roberts, from Candlewick, for coming, too!

John Grisham continues his young adult series with Theodore Boone: The Abduction

John Grisham is back with Theodore Boone: The Abduction, the follow-up to Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer. Just when it seems like life for Theo is back to the status quo, a new legal mystery comes to town--and Theo is the only one who can crack the case. 

"Not since Nancy Drew has a nosy, crime-obsessed kid been so hard to resist." -The New York Times

Kate DiCamillo is coming to Square Books, Jr. on Saturday, May 14

We're excited to announce that Newberry award-winning author, Kate DiCamillo will be coming to Square Books, Jr. in May. DiCamillo is the author of some of our favorite children's books including The Magician's Elephant, The Tale of Despereaux, Because of Winn-Dixie, Great Joy, the Mercy Watson series and many, many more. You don't want to miss this event with one of today's best children's authors. 


Melissa & Doug take over our receiving department

Melissa & Doug, the toy manufacturers, seem like nice people, but what they really are is smart.  So smart that they can get us to totally inundate our receiving department with an entire UPS truckload (yes, one truck just for us) of their puzzles, games, art supplies, kits & toys.  Every January they make us an offer we can't refuse.  If we place an order with them in January, we won't have to pay for it until mid-December. Business is slower & so is cash flow in January, so how can I resist ordering a years supply when we won't have to pay for it until 10 months later when business is brisk.  Furthermore, when I need to reorder during the year, as a participant in this program, they will give us 90 days and free freight.  Their products are great and this program makes it so easy fto stock them.  I wish other vendors would realize that working with retailers, offering innovative & generous terms, benefits everyone. So now we just need to figure out where to put it all! -LR

Junior Parties Like Rock Stars

Square Books JrStyling themselves after the A Team, the "Square Books Jr Team" hosted a Back-To-School Bash at Off Square Books last night, from 7 - 10 p.m.  Sixty to seventy "adults, kids, and teens," according to one observer, grooved to the "progressive rock" sound of The Tape Ghosts -- Jas Sandlin, Brayden Berry, and, on drums, Jr. bookseller Marterrious McClain.

The event was the brainchild of longtime Jr. staffer Paul Fyke and his cohort Sami Thomason, both of whom are officers of the Yoknapatawpha Youth Literacy Council, which co-sponsored the evening with coordination from Jr's Ramona Wanlass, a director on the "big" Literacy Council.  Ramona said that the greatest enjoyment came from "dancing to the band, and also making paper airplanes.  The planes," she added, "were based on Flying Lessons by Gilbert Ford, who visited Jr this past April.


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