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CCB Newsletter
February 2014


In this Newsletter…

  • News and Updates
  • Calendar
  • New Bibliographies on the CCB Website: Books Starring Birds and A Black History Month Dozen
  • Our Affiliates Out and About
  • Feature: Folk and Fairy Tales at the CCB, a Spotlight on the Storytelling Corner
  • New Books We Just Had to Read: Bear's Big Bottom, Grasshopper Jungle, and Unhinged
  • Highlighted Book from Our Wish List: Chu's Day

News and Updates

A Thank You

The CCB wishes to extend a warm “thank you” to the anonymous donor who purchased a book from the CCB wish list—the graphic novel adaptation of Pride and Prejudice—to add to our collection in December. Thanks to this donor, more students will have access to a text used in GSLIS children’s literature courses.

13th Annual Book Sale

The CCB is gearing up for our annual book sale, which will be held from February 17-19 from 10am-6 pm each day (check the calendar). Thousands of brand-new children’s books will be available for youth ages birth through high school. The titles available represent the full spectrum of children’s publishing in fiction and non-fiction: board books, picture books, easy and transitional readers, chapter books, series fiction, novels, activity books and kits, non-fiction series, mass-market paperbacks, and more.

Paperback books sell for $1 or $2 each, hardcover books $5 each, and special items are priced as marked.

For the best selection of the book sale, we encourage you to attend the pre-sale, which will be held on February 16. A ticketed reservation is required for the pre-sale, and the tickets sell out quickly. We’re currently taking reservations, and will continue to do so through February 10; you may call (217) 244-9331 or email to reserve a ticket.

For further information about the book sale or the pre-sale, please see our Book Sale webpage.

Gryphon Award Announced

The CCB is pleased to announce the 2014 Gryphon Award winner: Battle Bunny, written by Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett, and Alex, illustrated by Matthew Myers but mostly Alex, and published by Simon and Schuster. Both a sendup of saccharine period picture books and a tribute to kid invention, this deliciously comic outing follows young Alex’s savage textual and illustrative transforming of a treacly bunny tale into a saga of a thwarted attempt at world rabbit domination.

The Gryphon Award committee also recognized three honor books:

  • Lulu and the Dog from the Sea, written by Hilary McKay, illustrated by Priscilla Lamont, and published by Whitman
  • Year of the Jungle, written by Suzanne Collins, illustrated by James Proimos, and published by Scholastic
  • Like Bug Juice on a Burger, written by Julie Sternberg, illustrated by Matthew Cordell, and published by Amulet/Abrams

The Gryphon Award is presented annually to the author of an outstanding English language work of fiction or non-fiction for which the primary audience is children in kindergarten through fourth grade. The title chosen best exemplifies those qualities that successfully bridge the gap in difficulty between books for reading aloud to children and books for practiced readers. More information about the award can be found at the CCB Gryphon Award webpage.

The Gryphon Award winners, as well as the 2013 Bulletin Blue Ribbons and winners from the recently announced ALA Youth Media Awards are on display in the CCB on the awards shelf. We invite you to come take a look at these distinguished books for yourself.

2014 Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction

CCB Director Deborah Stevenson served on the award committee for the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, which is awarded each year to an exceptionally meritorious work of historical fiction for children or young adults set in the Americas. This year, the award went to Kirkpatrick Hill for Bo at Ballard Creek, illustrated by LeUyen Pham and published by Henry Holt. For more information, please see the award announcement on the Horn Book website.

February Calendar

  • Monday, February 10: Deadline for Payment for Presale Reservations

  • Wednesday, February 12: Youth Lit Book Club, 5-6 pm
    Reading No One Else Can Have You by Kathleen Hale

  • Sunday, February 16: CCB Annual Pre-sale, 1-4 pm, GSLIS East Foyer

    GSLIS East Foyer. For more information, please visit the Book Sale webpage.

  • Monday, February 17-Wednesday, Februrary 19: Thirteenth Annual CCB Book Sale

    One of our biggest events of the year: We’ll have thousands of book for ages 0-18 for sale at greatly discounted rates every day from 10am-6pm each day in the CCB. For more information, please visit the Book Sale webpage.

  • Friday, February 28: Annual Gryphon Lecture Featuring Michelle Martin, 7 pm, GSLIS 126
    Prof. Martin will present “Augusta Baker and the Art of Storytelling: Gateway to Children’s Literature and Literacy.” Reception to follow in GSLIS 131 and East Foyer.

Events take place at the CCB unless otherwise noted. For complete descriptions of events, visit the calendar on our website.

New Bibliographies on the CCB Website

Is It a Bird? Is It a Plane? No, It’s Just a Bird: Books Starring Birds
Created by Alice Mitchell, CCB GA

A Black History Month Dozen
Created by Tad Andracki, CCB Outreach and Communications Coordinator

Our Affiliates Out and About

CCB Affiliate and GSLIS Associate Professor Kate McDowell presented a talk entitled “Young Adult Fantasy and Race: From Representation to Imagination” for the English department at St. Louis University in St. Louis, MO on January 31.

CCB Affiliate and GSLIS Assistant Professor Carol Tilley has been elected director of external relations for the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE), effective at the ALISE annual conference, January 21-24 in Philadelphia.

GSLIS PhD student Alaine Martaus presented a work in progress poster at the ALISE annual conference in Philadelphia, entitled “Nerdfighteria’s Literary Salon: Understanding the Social Networks in an Online Community of Readers.”

CCB Outreach and Communications Coordinator Tad Andracki has been appointed to the Rainbow List Project Committee of the GLBT Round Table of ALA for a two-year term.

Feature: Folk and Fairy Tales at the CCB, a Spotlight on the Storytelling Corner

Statue of boy reading on top of the card catalog in the Storytelling Corner
Tucked in the back corner of the CCB is a hidden gem of GSLIS: the Storytelling Corner. A tidy corner of just a few shelves surrounding a comfy couch and overstuffed ottoman, the Storytelling Corner is the hub for storytelling resources and research on folktales for the CCB, and indeed for campus. All adaptations and collections of folk and fairy tales that come into the CCB collection find their way into this corner, and anything that’s listed with a 398 call number (the Dewey Decimal number for folk and fairy tales) is shelved here.

Many GSLIS youth services students are familiar with the corner, as it’s a popular spot to catch up on some homework or reading—or even just to grab a quick nap—but the collection is much more impressive than its unassuming appearance would suggest. The Storytelling Corner covers a formidable array of resources, from collection of humorous tales dating back to 1928, through postwar retellings accompanied by Caldecott-worthy artwork (like Marcia Brown’s Cinderella) and watershed collections of black folklore (like Virginia Hamilton’s 1985 The People Could Fly), to new reimaginings of Aesop’s fables (as with Jerry Pinkney’s The Lion and the Mouse). In fact, according to a rough count by CCB volunteer Linda Wessels, the Storytelling Corner contains just over 1500 print resources, from picture books to anthologies. In addition, the Storytelling Corner contains about 950 audiovisual items for students’ and researchers’ use, ranging from audio tapes of telling of Mexican tales to VHS copies of fairytale-inspired Disney favorites.

Sound overwhelming? Don’t worry; the CCB has you covered. Roughly every other month, the CCB graduate assistants create annotated storytelling bibliographies, using tale types, motifs, or origins to create displays that also add some friendliness to the corner. If you’re looking for a particularly stellar version of a tale, the storytelling bibliographies on the CCB website are an excellent resource. When you come visit us, don’t forget to venture into the Storytelling Corner to check out this impressive collection and perhaps revisit a childhood favorite tale.

New Books We Just Had to Read

Every month, the CCB Graduate Assistants highlight books reviewed in the most recent issue of the Bulletin that we were excited to read.  These decisions are based on personal preference, but all books listed are Recommended by the Bulletin. For complete reviews, visit the Bulletin website ( to learn how to subscribe.

Katie’s Choice: Bear’s Big Bottom by Steve Smallman
Reading Level: 3-5 yrs.
Pages: 26
Publisher and Year: Capstone, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-62370-118-5
Price: $14.95

There are a few things you should know about Bear. “Friendly” and “sweet,” Bear is frankly “the nicest bear you’d ever meet.” Bear also happens to have one rather large problem: a “BIG bear bottom!” At first, the adorable big-eyed Bear’s furry friends don’t seem to mind, especially when his demanding derriere makes for easy games of hide-and-seek. Even when Bear unwittingly empties the swimming pool and sends his smaller friends flying off of the seesaw, his chums faithfully stick by his (back)side. When Bear accidentally sits on Hedgehog’s beloved birthday cake, however, they cry “You’ve spoiled our day!” and Bear wanders into the forest to sulk. Filled with regret, Bear’s friends go on the hunt for him and instead fall prey to the evil Fox—and only Bear and his big bottom (and the large, now uprooted tree that has affixed itself to it) can save them. Warm and soothing colors softly fill the playful illustrations, and the text will strike a perfect rhythm for young readers looking to join in on the fun. Children and adults alike will certainly appreciate Bear’s big bottom and even bigger heart in this tush-tastic tale.

Tad’s Choice: Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith
Reading Level: Gr. 9-12
Pages: 464
Publisher and Year: Dutton, 2014
ISBN: 978-0-525-42603-5
Price: $18.99

This is the way the world ends: with the accidental release of a genetically modified mold that infects humans with a larva that grows into a six-foot-tall nearly indestructible and insatiable mantid, destroying its host. That is the truth, documented obsessively by Austin, a descendent of Polish immigrants who lives in the cornfields of Ealing, Iowa. Austin’s painstakingly recounted history also includes the fact that he is in love with his girlfriend Shann, but also with his best friend Robby, and their relationships become increasingly complicated as the string of intertwined events that converge in the coming of the Unstoppable Soldier bugs unfolds. Austin’s deadpan wit and repeated one-liners are often surprisingly insightful (“All roads lead past shooting ranges, liquor stores, and gay bars”), and there’s more than a twinge of Vonnegut in the alternation between backstory, distant events, and current perspective that culminates in the retreat into a 1970s bunker. Smith’s previous books have gleefully hopped over line after line; this bizarre, sexy, funny, and tragic book will have readers wondering if there was ever even a line at all.

Alice’s Choice: Unhinged by A.G. Howard
Reading Level: Gr. 9-12
Pages: 387
Publisher and Year: Amulet/Abrams, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-4197-0971-5
Price: $17.95

At the close of Splintered, Alyssa chose to leave her throne in Wonderland in favor of living a human life with her parents and boyfriend, Jeb. Unfortunately, her choices come back to haunt her, as Queen Red has started sending magical creatures from Wonderland into the human world to kill Alyssa. Morpheus, the third leg in the increasingly dramatic love triangle with Alyssa and Jeb, returns to convince her to return to Wonderland and save its inhabitants from an unknown horrific fate, the details of which Alyssa must interpret from her own cryptic artwork. Alyssa struggles to save herself and Wonderland, while keeping her half-netherling life a secret from Jeb and her parents, who are hiding secrets of their own. While Alyssa’s gothic style is occasionally overwrought, readers who enjoy creepy stories will thrill at this dark re-imagination of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and will find Alyssa to continue to be a compelling protagonist, undoubtedly leaving them to look forward to the third book in this entrancing series.

Highlighted Book from Our Wish List

Gaiman, Neil. Chu’s Day; illus. by Adam Rex. New York: HarperCollins, 2013. ISBN 978-0062017819.

For more book selections or to order this one, visit the CCB’s Amazon Wish List.

CCB Spring Hours and General Information

  • Monday: 10am-5pm
  • Tuesday: 10am-7pm
  • Wednesday: 4pm-7pm
  • Thursday: 10am-7pm
  • Friday: 10am-5pm

For more information about the CCB and our collection, please visit the About Us page on our website.

To stay up-to-date with CCB events and news, be sure to ‘like’ our Facebook page.

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