Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Last Minute Gift Book Suggestion from Author Nikki Grimes

Nikki Grimes Recommends The Underneath for Holiday Giving

If you are still looking for holiday gift book ideas, author Nikki Grimes would like to recommend the New York Times bestselling novel The Underneath by Kathi Appelt for readers ages 8 to 12. Here is what Kirkus Reviews has to say about The Underneath, "When fate separates them, an old hound dog and two foster kittens survive the dangers of the bayou to find one another. Seeking shelter, a homeless pregnant cat responds to the "bluesy" baying of a hound named Ranger who lives chained under the porch of a shack in the woods of the East Texas bayou. He happily shares the Underneath with the cat and her two kittens, Sabine and Puck. The kittens are safe from Ranger's evil master Gar Face as long as they remain hidden, but Puck ventures out "straight into the terrible hands of Gar Face," who does his best to drown both the curious kitten and his mother. Somehow Puck escapes after promising his dying mother he will find Sabine and free Ranger, but he's on his own in a bayou teeming with mysterious creatures. Aided by Small's lively illustrations, Appelt intricately weaves these animals' ancient stories into Puck's survival saga to produce a magical tale of betrayal, revenge, love and the importance of keeping promises."

The Underneath was a National Book Award Finalist and a Newbery Honor Book.  It also received the Pen USA Award, and was a finalist for the Heart of Hawick Children's Book Award.
Read more about Kathi Appelt and her books on her website.

Nikki Grimes  is a New York Times best-selling author and prolific artist who has written many award-winning books for children and young adults. Her works include the novels “Bronx Masquerade” (Dial), winner of the 2003 Coretta Scott King Author Award; “Jazmin’s Notebook” (Dial), a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and Bank Street College Book of the Year; “The Road to Paris” (Penguin), another Coretta Scott King Honor Book; the popular poetry collections “Danitra Brown, Class Clown,” “Danitra Brown Leaves Town” (HarperCollins) and “Meet Danitra Brown” (Lothrop), an ALA Notable and Coretta Scott King Honor Book; “Hopscotch Love” (Lothrop); “Oh, Brother” (Greenwillow); “What Is Goodbye?” (Hyperion); “Talkin’ About Bessie,” the 2003 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner and Author Award honor book; “Aneesa Lee & the Weaver’s Gift,” an American Bookseller Pick of the List (Lothrop); “From a Child’s Heart” (Just Us Books); “A Dime a Dozen; My Man Blue” (Dial); “Come Sunday” (Eerdman’s), an ALA Notable book; “At Break of Day” and “When Daddy Prays” (Eerdman’s). Other works include “Stepping Out with Grandma Mac,” a Notable Social Studies Trade Book; and “Shoe Magic” (Orchard); “A Pocketful of Poems” (Clarion); “Wild, Wild Hair” (Scholastic); “Portrait of Mary” (Harcourt Brace), a work of adult fiction; and NAACP winner “Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope” (Simon & Schuster).

Grimes' most recent book  is the young adult novel A Girl Named Mister.

Grimes is also a contributor to The Exquisite Corpse Adventure, available on READ.GOV, and the author of a moving poem about President Obama's inauguration, which was published in the recent paperback edition of the art and literature anthology Our White House: Looking In, Looking Out. Grimes is a member of the board of The National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance.

Learn more about Grimes and her books on her website.