Great news for TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE!

2018 is off to a great start so far with a bevy of awards and accolades for Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive!, and I’m so excited to share the latest good news with you here!

TLA Topaz list logoFirst, the Texas Library Association include it on their 2018 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List. According to TLA, the Topaz List “highlights recently published nonfiction gems for readers of all ages. Adult services and youth services librarians serve on separate committees that consider hundreds of nonfiction titles for adults and youth respectively. The librarians debate the merits, appeal, and importance of the works to curate a list of engaging nonfiction titles intended to reveal new or little-known information, open doors to other worlds, or introduce fresh voices. With titles for adults and children PreK-grade 12, there is something for everyone on the Topaz list!”
Texas librarians ROCK, and being on this list is an incredible honor!
Nerdy Book Club bannerNext, the Nerdy Book Club announced their 2017 Nerdies for Long Form Nonfiction. I love reading this blog, and their passion for children’s books really comes through. Plus, some of my favorite books and authors are on this list, so I literally gasped out loud when I scrolled down far enough to see the cover of Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive! Thank you, Nerdy Book Club! So exciting!!
Cybils 2017 bannerThen, the Cybils announced their 2017 Elementary/Middle Grade Non-Fiction Finalists, and Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive! was on their list, too! Again, there are some amazing books here (including Zoo Scientists to the Rescue and Fred Korematsu Speaks Up, which I reviewed in past posts here), and I have been a Cybils judge in the past (so I know how seriously they take their work!). Being a Cybils finalist is an unbelievable thrill!
Booklist Lasting Connections bannerFinally, Booklist shared some love, in both their Special Feature: Lasting Connections 2017 and Editors’ Choice: Books for Youth, 2017.
Lasting Connections highlights their top 30 choices for the K–8 classroom, all published in the previous year and all selected for their natural connections across the curriculum and to the Common Core State and Next Generation Science Standards.
Booklist Editors' Choice bannerAnd the Editor’s Choice list is selected by the Books for Youth editorial staff, who are “committed to providing a broad selection of outstanding books that mixes popular appeal with literary excellence,” as best-of-the-year nonfiction and fiction books and picture books. Wow!

Having a book that you’ve worked hard on appear on lists like these is truly a dream come true, and I couldn’t be happier with this news. Cheers to 2018!

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE resources for teachers and #GIVEAWAY!

Educator's Guide cover

It is with great excitement and gratitude that I give you this list of amazing educational resources that wonderful educators and designers have compiled to go along with TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT’S ALIVE! and, hopefully, make it easier–and more fun–for teachers or librarians to put to use in the classroom!


Educator's Guide for teachersFirst up is the Educator’s Guide to Support Information Literacy, written by amazing 5th grade teacher Melissa Guerrette, M.Ed., NBCT. This guide is chock full of tips teachers can use to teach students how to evaluate sources and fact-check any materials they may encounter, whether they are reading the stories from TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE or just about anything else.
It includes a printable Fact or Fiction note-taking worksheet teachers can use to help readers analyze a text to determine if it is true or false and record evidence of their thinking processes along the way.
It also has a list of the Common Core State Standards supported by the activities in the guide, AND an impressive collection of additional resources for teachers of information literacy concepts.
Download the PDF of the guide HERE.

TTL Stem Game for teachersBut wait, there’s more! Awarding-winning Library Media Specialist and STEM Coordinator Suzanne Costner partnered with Curious City DPW to create a STEM Card Game and companion research activities. “As a school librarian with a passion for STEM topics, I saw this book as an opportunity both to explore interesting stories and to develop crucial information literacy skills,” says Suzanne. Using scientific topics pulled from the book’s sidebars, they created a 52-card card deck that teachers can print out for their classroom. In Round 1, Player 1 reads a statement to Player 2 from a card. Player 2 decides whether the statement is a “Truth” or a “Lie.” In Round 2, players choose a research topic from their amassed cards and make three game cards of their own – two truths and one lie on their chosen topic. In Round 3, players try to outwit each other with the game cards they have created. Each new game in the classroom grows the game deck with new STEM material!
Download the PDF of the Truth or Lie? STEM Card Game HERE.
Suzanne and Curious City DPW also put together the Two Truths and a Lie: What’s Your Source?, which provides teachers with links for students to explore for topic validation and gives them the chance to compare and cross-check the information before making their final decision on whether the stories in TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT’S ALIVE! are fact or fiction; Two Truths and a Lie: Reaching for Resources, which provides educators with links connected with the book’s chapters to build information literacy lessons upon, and the Two Truths and a Lie: Rationale, Curriculum Connections & Grading Rubric.


To go along with all of this excitement, for a limited time Curious City DPW is hosting a GIVEAWAY! Read all about it and ENTER HERE, but hurry! Winners will be announced December 5, 2017!


I’m super excited about how these might spur classroom discussions around STEM topics and information literacy. If you use either of them with students, please let me know! I’d love to hear about how teachers are putting into practice and any suggestions for how it could be improved. And, of course, pictures would be fantastic!

Photos from the Two Truths and a Lie launch party

Okay, so it’s been more than a month since the launch party for Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive!, and this post is _way_ overdue. In my defense, we’ve been hard at work on the second book in the series, and a writer has to have her priorities, right? Alright, so perhaps there’s no reasonable excuse for how neglected my poor blog has been lately, but I’m vowing to try to do better going forward. And I definitely want to share some of the highlights from the launch party, so in the better-late-than-never category, here we go! =D
First, the cake! In the flurry of activity getting ready for a launch party, I always forget to take a picture of the cake at the actual event, so this time I took a picture of it in the shopping cart when I picked it up. It’s a good thing, too, because this is, sadly, the only picture I have of it.
the launch party cake
There were also gluten-free cupcakes with decorations that said, “The cake is a lie.” (That’s a geeky gamer reference, in case you haven’t heard it before.)
Before we even started the actual launch party event, I got to sign a book for a brand-new fan who just happened to be in the store when we started setting things up. Fun!
signing for a new fan
After thanking everyone who helped make this book possible (in broad strokes, because I could go on all day!), I did a little reading from the book. (You can’t have a launch party without a reading, right?) Since we were in a bookstore surrounded by books, I selected the story about book scorpions and book lice. What are those, you ask? You’ll have to read the book! And then you’ll have to decide if they’re real or not. 😉
a reading from chapter 4
Then we played a game show-style quiz game, using our smart phones. To my immense relief, it worked! People could answer using their devices and the system would let me see who answered the most questions the fastest.
setting up the game
Kevan won the first prize–a Bigfoot Air Freshener for his car. (Is Bigfoot a truth or a lie?)
Kevan wins a Bigfoot air freshener
She looks worried! I wonder what was in her bag? Ah, yes… I think it was the Groucho Marx Disguise Glasses (so she can fake her identity).
what will she win?
Dan was so excited to see what he won that he ripped open the bag and sent his prize flying halfway across the store! Fortunately, it didn’t hit anyone. If I recall correctly, he got the Enchanted Unicorn Bandages. (Are unicorns real?)
Dan launched his launch party prize
This young guest was clearly thrilled to win the Glow-in-the-Dark Jellyfish Ornament! (It’s as close as I could get to a Pacific Northwest tree octopus (see chapter 5) or the Praya dubia (chapter 6).
winner of the glow-in-the-dark jellyfish
What did Laura Moe win? Was it the Dr. McPhee’s Snake Oil Soap? I think so!
what did Laura win?
And, finally, the grand prize winner… Alan won his very own Mike the Headless Chicken (see chapter 5)! Fortunately, this one is just plastic and doesn’t require food and water through an eye dropper.
Alan with Mike the Headless Chicken
It was a great launch party and such a memorable day. Thank you again to everyone who helped make this book happen, to Secret Garden Book Shop for hosting my launch party yet again, to Curtis Manley for catching all of these fantastic photos for me (except the cake in the shopping cart, of course), and to everyone who came to the event. I love being part of such a supportive community of writers, booksellers, and readers! 💙

The Two Truths and a Lie: It's Alive! Blog Tour Wrap-Up

Two Truths and a Lie blog tour header

Two Truths and a Lie blog tour header
Prior to its release date on June 27th (TOMORROW!!), many people worked really hard to put together an amazing blog tour for the launch of my newest book (with Ammi-Joan Paquette), Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive! The tour included reviews, excerpts, interviews, giveaways, and more. Here’s a roundup of all of the great posts that were part of the official tour (links will go directly to the relevant post):

There were also a few that weren’t part of the official blog tour, but that put up awesome posts during the same time frame, so I wanted to highlight those as well:

I’m extremely grateful to each and every one of these bloggers for helping to get the word out about our new book in particular, of course, but also just for sharing their love of books and writing in general. I hope you’ll stop by and check out all of their wonderful blogs! ❤️
 

Launch Party for Two Truths and a Lie: It's Alive!

Two Truths and a Lie cover
Two Truths and a Lie cover

Please join me for the West Coast Launch Party for
TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT’S ALIVE!

 

Sunday, June 25th, at 2 p.m.


A trivia-style game-show challenge. . . with prizes!

Q&A, exclusive behind-the-scenes gossip, and outtakes!

Book swag!

Charitable giving!

Free snacks and drinks!

Books, books, and more books!

 

Where, you ask?

Secret Garden Books
2214 NW Market Street
Seattle, WA 98107
206-789-5006

(Click here for directions.)

** Come early to enjoy the fabulous Ballard Farmers Market before the event!

If you can’t make it to the party but would like to pre-order a signed copy, please visit http://www.secretgardenbooks.com/book/9780062418791 and put the dedication info in the Order Comments box. Thanks! =D

Great news for TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE!

Two Truths and a Lie cover
Two Truths and a Lie cover Junior Library Guild Selection seal

I’m thrilled to be able to share that the first book in the TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE series, IT’S ALIVE!, has been chosen by the Junior Library Guild as a Fall 2017 selection for the Elementary Nonfiction category (for grades 2-6).
This is very exciting news, because it means the book will be heading to libraries across the country for kids to check out and enjoy!
It’s also really encouraging, because, according to their website, the JLG editorial team reviews over 3,000 new titles each year and selects only around 800 for the program. The Junior Library Guild Selection designation is unique in that it is typically awarded far in advance of publication. As one of the first awards given throughout the life of a book, it is often viewed as a bellwether of future success, with more than 95 percent of JLG selections going on to receive awards and/or favorable reviews!
So, keep your fingers crossed. Here’s hoping for even more good news yet to come!
 

Introducing… TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: IT'S ALIVE!

Two Truths and a Lie cover

Squee!! In case you missed it yesterday, Mia Wenjen over at the awesome book blog Pragmatic Mom hosted my next book, Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive!, for a cover reveal AND a sneak peek at some of what’s inside!
Here’s a tiny look at the cover…Two Truths and a Lie cover
But, be sure to check out her whole fun post for a bigger version, plus an exclusive sneak peek at the introduction, a taste of our sidebars, and a glimpse of our author bios!
Can YOU spot the lies? 🙂
 

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