Saturday, April 13, 2013

Thank You's, Goodbye's, and Archives

Four years, three months, and 530 posts. Also a move from California to Utah and two new books published. But life gets crunched up sometimes, and what I really need is more time for my own writing. So Book Aunt is coming to a close, and I just want to thank you all for sharing the joy of talking about children's books with me.

Yesterday I was standing in a bookstore and overheard a woman trying to pick out a book for her nine-year-old niece. Naturally, I entered into the fray. My only difficulty was that when I asked the child questions about her reading habits and interests, the aunt kept trying to answer for her (incorrectly). I finally got a few words from the girl herself and managed to seal the deal with Half Magic by Edward Eager, though we decided that E.D. Baker's books would be a good option to look for at the library. And so it goes: Book Aunt may not be posting, but she's still lurking in the shadows of the local bookstore, leaping out to hand books to unsuspecting and presumably grateful children plus the adults they haul along with them for purposes of paying for things.

I will keep the site up for a while so that people can access the archives, most notably my large posts overviewing a genre or different versions of the same well-known story or book. Here are some of the more useful posts in various categories:

About Fairy Tales and Folktales

Standout Fairy Tale Books, Collections, and Retellings

Fairy Tales and Books about Witches (A Halloween Post)

Classic Fairy Tale Retellings

An Overview of Trickster Tales

Versions of a Well-Known Story or Book

Versions of A Child's Garden of Verses

Versions of Mother Goose

Versions of Cinderella (Plus Notes on the Possible Demise of Picture Book Fairy Tales)

Versions of Beauty and the Beast

Versions of Goldilocks and the Three Bears

Versions of the Snow Queen

Picture Book Themes

Picture Books for Grieving

Picture Books to Sing

Picture Books about Water

Picture Book Lessons about Being Yourself

Thoughtful Picture Books You've Never Heard Of

Oddball Picture Books:

    --Not Your Grandma's Picture Books

    --Picture Books with Bite

    --Feeling Kinda Crazy: Three Unusual Picture Books

Other Book Batches

Many Mouse Books

Poetry Anthologies for Small Children

A Selection of Christmas Books

Books by Authors about Writing for Children

Best Book Lists

Best Picture Books Ever (2009)

Best Middle Grade Books Ever (2009)

Final Favorites Lists (2013)

How to Pick Books for Kids

Secret Weapons: Choosing the Right Books

Ten Books at a Time

The Pistachio Awards

First Annual Pistachio Awards (March 2011)

Second Annual Pistachio Awards (April 2012)

In Case You Didn't Know...

Why I Love Picture Books (Anarchy of the Imagination)

Again, thank you to all of my visitors. I've made so many nice blog friends. I hope to be able to keep in touch through comments, tweets, and e-mails. And of course, let's continue to rejoice in children's literature and the love of reading!

For those of you who follow my books, I have a picture book called The Tooth Fairy Wars, illustrated by Jake Parker, coming out in Spring 2014 and a poetry collection called Monster School that will probably be out in Spring 2015. No middle grade fiction at the moment, but I'm working on something, so we'll see what happens next. (Isn't that always the case with life and everything?)

Note: The first image above is a detail called "Young Woman Writing" from a wall painting in Pompeii. The second image is a detail from "Lady Writing a Letter with Her Maid" by Vermeer. The third painting is "Three Reading Girls" by Walter Elmer Schofield. A print of it used to hang in my grandmother's home. She was a very good first grade teacher and reading tutor as well as a voracious reader who passed the love of books on to her children and their children. The picture now hangs in my office.


Amy LV said...

Kate, We will miss you here in the Kidlitosphere, but I do love the image of you lurking here and everywhere, wise and witty books in hand. And I am glad that there will be more books by Kate out in the world. We're fans here... Many good wishes to you at the start of this new chapter, and thank you for all you have given us. xo, a.

Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard said...

Farewell, and good luck! You will be missed.

bookkm said...

You have things to write. we understand. (mutter, mutter, mutter)

Charlotte said...


I wish it were not so, but I will keep your blog in my reader just in case, and maybe someday we will meet in real life!

Best of luck to you in your other writing!

KateCoombs said...

Thanks, you guys. Keep in touch! (Sounds like I'm asking you to sign my yearbook, I know.) My Twitter handle is @KateCoombs13 and I'm the Kate Coombs (of 23) on Facebook that lives in Bountiful, Utah.

Kate said...

So sad :( But thank you for all the wonderful recommendations. Maybe I'll see you around town. I'm not sure where you are in Utah, but I frequent the King's English...

storyqueen said...

I am bummed, but I totally get it. I have trouble keeping up with my blog, and it's just a slice of life kind of thing. I can't imagine what it takes to maintain such a thoughtful, helpful blog! I look forward to reading more of your books.

Take care,


Jennifer said...

We'll miss you, but yay for new books!

Louise said...

If not for this blog, I would never have discovered the Queen's Thief books, along with many others (and my kids' collection of picture books would be significantly smaller). I am sorry to see it go, but excited about the thought of more of YOUR books in the world! Thank you for sharing all you have with us over the last four years!

teacherninja said...

Thank you for your service to us readers, librarians, parents, etc! You will be missed!

Laurie Brown said...

Best of luck with your writing! You'll be missed in the blogosphere.

Amy said...

It sounds like you have lots of exciting things going on, but your posts will definitely be missed!

Catherine said...

You will be missed! And thank you for so many great posts!

Jen Robinson said...

You'll definitely be missed, Kate. Thanks for all the great posts over the years!

LinWash said...

Oh no! I'll miss you! But I'm glad I'll have your books!

KateCoombs said...

Thank you so much! It's so nice to know the blog has been helpful. And I will definitely write some good books. :)

Susan said...

Thanks so much for all the reviews. I have used your site frequently as a source for books to read. Best wishes in all you do.

Tricia said...

I haven't been visiting blogs much these days, but there are a few I still read. I am sad to see you go, but know you have great things ahead of you!
Best wishes,

Joy said...

To celebrate two years of blogging a poem a day for children, I'm giving away a POETRY FRIDAY ANTHOLOGY FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL t-shirt. If you'd like a chance to win the shirt drop by

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Ruth Donnelly said...

Awww... you will definitely be missed! Thanks for leaving the site up; it's such a great resource. And best of luck with your writing!

Yellow Brick Reads said...

Such a shame - I'll miss this blog! Oh well, what the blog world loses, your book readers will surely gain. Best of luck with the writing

Famus Author Books said...

We will definitely miss you..hope you will come back for the reader like us..Best for writing!!