Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Magic of School Book Clubs

As a kid, one of my favorite days in each month was when the Scholastic Book flyer would be handed out in school. How I pored over those flimsy sheets of cheap newsprint! Ach, how I coveted.

I coveted every single book in every single flyer. But life being what it is, I was forced to choose - 1 book, maybe 2, each month. How tough that choice was!

Even better than the day the flyer came around was the day the book order arrived - with my long anticipated choices within!

I still remember some of those books. Magic Elizabeth  was one I treasured, and read over and over and over again. I know the cover was tattered  but not torn, because I still have that book on my "favorite kidlit" shelf!

I think my favorite of all time, however, was the one I bought just before Halloween: The Haunted House and Other Spooky Poems and Tales.
It was grade 4  - or fourth grade as we called it in America. I read this book from cover to cover. I memorized the poem "The Haunted House" by Vic Crume so I could freak out my friends during recess. I acted out "The Cradle that Rocked Itself" with my stuffies. I had nightmares over Ann McGovern's "The Velvet Ribbon," but took to wearing my own velvet ribbon around my neck for at least a few weeks - very Goth, I was, back in 1970!

All of these fond memories came back to me with renewed vigor this past week when I learned that my own scary Halloween book, The Haunted House that Jack Built, appeared in the September edition of Scholastic's Seesaw book club flyer, both in English and French. The book also can be purchased with a read-along audio disk, which I recorded over the summer - apparently I have a "professional caliber witch's cackle." The CD includes the text, spooky sound effects and turn-the-page cues so pre-readers can still enjoy the book on their own.

How the worm turns. Here I am, creating books to scare and delight kids who purchase it from the Scholastic Book Club program, just as I was once scared, delighted, and inspired by a book I bought long ago from the same wonderful program. I don't know about you, but that gives me shivers....

Thanks, Scholastic, for putting books in the hands of kids who might otherwise not get the chance to purchase a book of their own choice. And thanks, too, Scholastic, for publishing my books and putting them in your new club flyers!

Post Script: My books will be appearing in several Scholastic Book club flyers during the coming school year. Here's the schedule, if you want to get a super great price on these fun titles!

Haunted House that Jack Built: Seesaw September, Club de Lecture September  - French Edition

A Porcupine in a Pine Tree: Holiday Gift November; Seesaw December, Club de Lecture December  - French Edition

Hilarious History of Hockey: Club de Lecture December - French Edition; Arrow January - English Edition.

The Quiz Book for Boys: Arrow January

The Quiz Book for Girls: Arrow January

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