Just what the world needs, another book blog.
All right, so the blogosphere isn't crying out for one more voice speaking up about children's books. After all, the kidlitosphere is alive and well, and there are more than a few top-notch bloggers already pointing out what's good and not so good in the world of children's publishing (if you don't believe me, check here -- and yes, that's just the "sampler set". Impressive, no?)
But a while back I read an article in the November 2009 issue of School Library Journal, written by Elizabeth Bird. Bird's blog, if you don't know it, is A Fuse #8 Production, and it's quite simply one of the most fantastic examples of book blogging out there.
Go read some. I'll wait.
Now, for those of you who decided to rejoin this humble effort, you can see what I mean about there not exactly being a void in the world of kid's lit. And Fuse #8 is just one of the incredible blogs being written, to say nothing of Reading Rants!, The Brown Bookshelf, MotherReader, or Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast, among many others. But what Bird wrote in that SLJ article hung with me. She says, "Bloggers blog because they love literature written for youth, and they want to share that love with others who feel the same way. Take away the distractions of who might be reading and why, and what you have are people who love what they do and are consistently willing to hear what others have to say. It is a community of people open to anyone who wants to join in the conversation."
Huh. Anyone, you say?
Well, pull up a chair, because I'm in.
And who am I exactly? In a nutshell, I'm a former bookseller turned library staffer, pursuing my MLIS online and raising my son, who just turned two. In fact, said son not only inspired the name for this blog (being the aforementioned Sprout) but also provided the kick in the hiney I needed to realize that children's lit is my true passion. Seeking out books to build his library has given me a whole new perspective on what's out there for families formed through international adoption, like ours was. Thanks to Sprout I am always on the lookout for books that depict diversity in a myriad of ways, while still being entertaining and fun to read together. And it occurred to me as I began to put this blog together that here was a niche I could fill, one for adoptive and transracial families from all walks of life.
So the goal here is to highlight books that Sprout and I read together, as well as middle-grade and even a few teen novels that I hope he'll be drawn to as he grows up. In that sense, I am building a virtual bookshelf for my son and others, never knowing which title might be the one that sparks the ongoing fire of a voracious reader.
If you're up for that, keep coming back. Sprout's Bookshelf is now open for business.