Saturday, June 11, 2011

TLA: Lisa Wheeler

Time to wind up on the Round Up.
Last (but not least) up, Lisa Wheeler!

As a child, Lisa Wheeler often lost herself in books. As a teen she could be found hiding behind the pages of a book in the library during lunch. (We all know what a scary place the high school cafeteria can be!) Books were always there waiting for Wheeler to find them, and after spending time raising her children, she found them again. This time they were in her head waiting to come out-- and they did.

Wheeler is the author of 31 books running the gambit of children’s literature. She has her beginning reader series, Fitch & Chip, her very athletic dinosaurs, the latest edition, Dino-Basketball, dancing suits of armor (Boogies Knights), and her singing dogs were a “howling” success, running away with the 2006 Texas Bluebonnet Award (Seadogs).

Critics have praised her repeatedly calling her a “rollicking rhymer” who can spin a yarn with her “neatly honed verse (that) is a pleasure to read aloud.” Her use of clever wordplay, puns, alliteration, refrain and “snappy rhyming text” has made her titles storytime favorites.

And favorites with award committees as well. The American Library Association has commended her work with a Geisel Honor (Jazz Baby) and multiple places on the Notable Books for Children list. Her books have also found their way to the School Library Journal’s “Best Books” list and won an Oppenheim Gold Award (Ugly Pie). Wheeler’s most recently published book, Spinster Goose is a clever, satirical twist on classic Mother Goose rhymes.

For those considering a career in children’s literature, Wheeler suggests they start by reading. “Know what is out there to know your craft. Immerse yourself in this world of children’s books. That is not just the first step it is the journey.”

Here, she reads selections from Spinster Goose, revealing a wicked sense of humor!

Image credit: SV; Marianne Follis

Thanks to Marianne Follis for research and writing our intros!

Posting (not poem) by Sylvia M. Vardell © 2011. All rights reserved.

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