Fartiste book cover
I’m a huge fan of Kath­leen Krull’s non­fic­tion books for kids, so I was sur­prised and dis­ap­point­ed to read her recent arti­cle in the Horn Book about the dif­fi­cul­ties she and her hus­band have had sell­ing their book FARTISTE! I would’ve thought a pic­ture book biog­ra­phy about a per­former who enter­tained audi­ences with his mas­tery of the art of the fart would be an easy sell, to a pub­lish­er AND on the book­store shelves! Does­n’t it sound like the per­fect idea for a kids book?
Here’s a case in point. Yes­ter­day, my son was hav­ing a bad day. I took him to the library because he said there was a book there that he want­ed. He walked straight to an emp­ty table in the children’s area and burst into tears. Come to find out, the book he want­ed had been lay­ing out on a table the last time we were in the library together—2 weeks ago—and now, to his sur­prise and great dis­ap­point­ment, it was gone. He didn’t remem­ber what book it was, and couldn’t tell me any­thing about it, except how heart­bro­ken he was and how no oth­er book in the whole library would do.
I walked over to the shelf, grabbed a copy of FARTISTE (which was on my mind because I’d just read the Horn Book arti­cle and was still mulling over my own afore­men­tioned sur­prise and dis­ap­point­ment), and hand­ed it to my sob­bing, incon­solable boy. “What’s this?” he asked skep­ti­cal­ly, stick­ing out his bot­tom lip. I told him. Curi­ous, he opened it up and read the first page. Engaged, he sank down to sit criss-cross in the floor in the mid­dle of the aisle. 15 min­utes or so lat­er, a per­fect­ly com­posed boy closed the book and said, “Thanks, Mom. That was a great book. Let’s take it home.” And he grabbed my hand and pulled me to the check­out counter.
So, thank you, Kath­leen, for the Horn Book arti­cle. And a big thank you, Kath­leen and Paul, from both of us, for stick­ing with FARTISTE. You have fans!

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