June Notes: Raising feminist sons, historical biographies for kids, and Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls

In the spirit of market research, I purchased a copy of the crowd-funded Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls this week. By focusing my kid-lit reading in this genre, I'm attempting to absorb the lyricism, beats, and language — the voice — of historical writing for kids. (Plus, how could I not support a project of this scope and reach?) If you're like me, and adore this type of children's book, check out my running list of similarly-themed historical biographies and nonfiction books with a social-justice bent.

Reads for Growns

Via Pooja's bi-monthly newsletter, The Feminist Parent: How to Raise a Feminist Son. I'm intrigued: The Washington Post announces a new platform for millennial women, The Lily, which will live entirely on social media. (The name is taken from the first newspaper for women, launched in 1849 in Seneca Falls.) Writers, take note: who decides if a book should be published? Productivity-philes, take note: this is somehow both soothing and intense at the very same time. I have mine: it's Betty Bear's Birthday by Gyo Fujikawa. Free yourself of your harshest critic and plow ahead. Five historic estates in upstate New York from And North. (And here's one more, from moi.) How to raise a reader. How to raise a thinker: my (updated) list of resources for parents, caregivers, librarians, and educators on how to teach kids about fake news, reinforce curiosity, healthy skepticism, critical thinking, and questioning. This 15-year old writes a daily politics newsletter with a subscriber-list that includes MSNBC anchor, a contributing-editor at the Atlantic, and the White House correspondent for CBS news. According to his website, he's on hiatus for the summer because he's at summer camp.


Alice in Wonderland (this beautifully illustrated version from Anna Rifle Bond). Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls. Albert's Alphabet by Leslie Tyron. Llama llama, Time to Share. Hervé Tullet's Doodle Cook.

Podcasts, Mostly

Two that are all about kid-lit: Candlewick Press Presents, featuring Candlewick-published storytellers, and Books Between, that's all about connecting kids ages 8-11 with books they love. This episode with author and activist Lesléa Newman (Heather Has Two Mommies) is a terrific listen, especially for anyone working in literacy as a teacher or librarian.

On the Tube

Master of None, Season 2 (Netflix) is delightful television that is, at times, a sticky-sweet confection of sorts. Aziz Ansari, the infectious leading man, writer, and creator of the series, swings by Hudson Valley's own, Storm King, in the second-to-last episode of the series. New Yorkers, if you haven't been, go: think striking expanses, open space, and over-sized sculpture with major drama. Also: the magnificent James Baldwin in I am Not Your Negro. Moana (I watched without my kid, even! Can't get 'You're Welcome' out of my head.)

From the Archive

Children's Books for the NYC Babe.