UP!–Princeton Children’s Book Festival 2019!

I came. I saw. I conquered! 🤗😁😎

I don’t know if any of you noticed, but there was no post for last year’s Princeton Book Festival 😮 “Why?” you may ask. You KNOW if I didn’t go it was because it was imPOSSible for me to get there. Well — it was impossible sigh. You see, I busted my wrist in July 2018 so couldn’t drive to Princeton in September. Yes, it was TORturous not going because I knew what I was missing. 😭 But here we are, two years since my last venture to “Oz” and I’m thrilled 🤗

OK, so this year as is every year, it was a full-on expedition for me, having prepped like the mountain climber I am. (Yeah. RIGHT! 🤣)…I went equipped with maps, lists, post-its with inscriptions, water and food, a hand truck for my book boxes, a determined spirit, and a VERY big smile 😄 And by the way…that box was filled twice — yep had to do 2 rounds!:

Upon arrival I took in the expanse of the familiar terrain 🎪 and was filled with eager anticipation at the sight of book mountains as far as the eye could see 📚🗻📚🏔 📚. Like the “Machame Gate” of Kilimanjaro, I approached the entry tents where welcoming faces, this year’s beautiful poster (designed by the amazing John Parra), the day’s itinerary and table plan, and especially MY (and my family’s) pre-ordered books awaited. And just so you know: these tent pics were actually taken as I was leaving, when only staff and a few people were there…NOT the wall-to-wall — well, pole-to-pole — people that were there from before the event even started! 👩🏼‍🤝‍👩🏻👩🏼‍🤝‍🧑🏻👩🏾‍🤝‍👩🏽👩🏾‍🤝‍👩🏼👩🏼‍🤝‍🧑🏾👩🏽‍🤝‍🧑🏽👩🏼‍🤝‍👩🏼👩🏾‍🤝‍👩🏻…

Once again, there was no way I could’ve accomplished this Mt. Everest-ish feat without the help of Joanne (*left), the  owner of JaZams Bookstore, and her wonderful staff. You see, one of my absolute favorite things to do is talk to KidLit people, so I basically yap my way through the event which is why, no matter how organized I am, I’m grateful when I can plant my “final book signed” flag by 4pm closing time. So JaZams kindly pulls my personal mountain of books so I am assured they don’t sell out by the time I finish the climb! Thank you, JaZams!

          

OK, so…the festival is from 11am – 4pm, and no matter my intention of arriving a good hour early, this year I claimed my parking spot by 11:15, so was already over an hour behind. That’s critical when attempting such heights! By the time I got to the Princeton Public Library “base camp” and obtained all the books, got them sorted to pay for them (needed 3 separate receipts), posted all the post-its, then lined them up in tent-ological order, it was already 12:30 when I reached the approach. I was ready to climb, but wondered if I could reach its peak by 4. Tall order, but I’d never bail. Box in tow…I began my ascent!

Everyone was glad for an overcast day, minus the blazing sun of past climbs that made all involved swelter. The only drawback was less lighting for photos under the tents, especially with my very NON-smart phone so it keeps alive my perpetual apology for the “less than perfect” dark or blurry photos. I’m sure you’ll still enjoy them 😉

First up was the “poster art” man of the hour, super sweet John Parra whose artwork adorns 11 picture books—so far. Marvelous Cornelius , authored by Phil Bildner, was my special purchase back when it was first released in 2015, and his newest release has subject matter close to my heart: Free Little Libraries 😍  John’s Little Libraries, Big Heroes, written by Miranda Paul, is a wonderful story about the journey of the creators of Free Little Libraries. And this year I had a cherry on top of the “Parra” cake having gotten to meet his lovely wife and adorable granddaughter 🤗…

I have admired Peter Brown and his work for as long as I became aware of him 🥰. A man of many talents, not only has he illustrated a wide variety of picture books and chapter books, but he’s written his “smash hit” novels: The Wild Robot (which I own ) and its sequel, The Wild Robot Escapes. It was such a pleasure to see him again, and was again flattered he remembered my Twitter icon 🤭…

I first met the ever-friendly Jessie Sima, in person, in 2017 at this same festival, though we were pals on Twitter for quite a while before that (Twitter is GREAT that way!). That was the year her debut picture book Not Quite Narwhal splashed onto the scene and took the KidLit ocean by storm. Even more of Jessie’s books have been decorating the shelves at bookstores, her latest being the precious Spencer’s New Pet which centers around an animal balloon and not only is the pet twisted—so is the ending! 😮🥰 …

Steve Sheinken is another “regular” at the festival. He is a writer of a wide array of compelling historical fiction, and obviously knows how to pick his table assistant who’s grown quite a bit since 2016 😃👌😎…

If you haven’t heard all the buzz about Noodlephant, you’re hearing it now! I had the pleasure of meeting its author (among other books!), Jacob Kramer, and illustrator K-Fai Steele (whose books are everywhere). They were SO much fun to talk to 😄😎 …

When I saw that Andrea Tsurumi was going to be at the festival, I was beside myself. She is BRILLiant and so are her books, my being a HUGE fan of Crab Cake. This book has it all 🤗🤩😎👍🥰…

I didn’t get to chat with these talented ladies, but at least I got a quick pic! Both write Middle Grade novels: Amy Rebecca Tan with her recent release, A Kind of Paradise, and Nicole Panteleakos with Planet Earth is Blue

Ever since I saw the beautiful and incredibly unique style of artwork in Maria the Matador, I became an instant fan of Anne Lambelet. Her illustration work on novels and other picture books is well worth checking out!…

These two happy, talented guys have participated in this festival before and it was so nice to see them here again 😃 Along with picture books, Phil Bildner writes the “Rip & Red” novel series, the latest release being Most Valuable Players. He also does these GREAT videos for KidLit TV called “Phil’s Fast Five” in which he interviews KidLit authors and illustrators. They are SO much fun to watch!  And Kevin Lewis does double “KidLit” duty. Not only does he write picture books, but he’s a literary agent at the prestigious Erin Murphy Literary Agency 🥰📚…

Audrey Vernick is always a joy to see. You may be familiar with all her KidLit hits. I know I am, her latest being Five Minutes just hitting bookshelves in September 😎 And I was so excited to see that First Grade Dropout went into paperback! I picked up my signed copy and still have Bob, Not Bob waiting for me! …

OK, so if you didn’t know already — Jon Scieszka (pronounced like “Fresca”) is KidLit royalty. Yep! Squint your eyes and tilt your head at juuuust the right angle and I bet you’ll see his crown 😮👑 Not only was he National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature (2008–9), but he’s written dozens of books (check out all the orange category links on the left side of his site)! His latest release is Astro Nuts, illustrated by Steven Weinberg. Go get lost on his site. I dare you! …

I first had the pleasure of meeting Brendan Wenzel at the fanTABulous bookstore in Manhattan, Books of Wonder. That was back in 2016 when his highly-acclaimed They All Saw a Cat was released (psst…I have a signed copy here 😁). He’s a sweetheart and I was shocked he remembered me! His newest release A Stone Sat Still is beautiful and added to his collection of other beauties

It is imPOSSible not to love Deborah Freedman. She’s as genuine and humble as they come, and as beautiful as her work. I mean, just look at that smile 🥰 Needless to say, I consider her books absolutely irresistible seeing as, over the years, I’ve managed to collect The Story of Fish and Snail, Blue Chicken, and This House, Once 🤗📚🥰 I’ve added to that collection her new release Carl and the Meaning of Life; so has school principal Cynthia, my daughter-in-law’s mom/my friend, for Midland School 🏫👍. It’s magnificent! 🤩❤…

Salina Yoon has SO many great books and one of my favorite “friend” picture books is her Be a Friend. I could not wait to meet her and tell her so, aaand get my copy 🤩😁 Cynthia got a copy for Midland School, too, along with several others and one of Carmen Oliver‘s many books, her newest Bears Make the Best Math Buddies 🤗👍📚 I loved meeting these ladies! …

Don’t you love how Dana Alison Levy was able to fan a few of her middle grade novels, her most recent being It Wasn’t Me? 😄🥰 That title alone makes you wonder what’s inside the cover! 👍😎 …

OK, first — Jonathan Stutzman and I became KidLit pals on Twitter (can’t say enough about Twitter for the KidLit Community 👌) and he was just as friendly and nice in person as he was online. SUCH a treat to meet face-to-face! But there was a bonus — I also got to meet his cohort in picture book crime, Heather Fox! You might guess, by the title of their second book together Llama Destroys the World, that these two would be fun. You’d be right! 😃 This book is hiLARious. Sure, splitting the butt seam in your pants is embarrassing 😮, but when a llama does it, it’s side splitting 🤣…

As you know, I pick out the books I’m going to purchase well beforehand, and Bensom Shum‘s Hide ‘n’ Sheep was the board book I picked for my granddaughter 🥰 What I didn’t know about this super-talented illustrator is that he is also a Disney animator! Had I known, I would’ve gushed, and drowned him with a tsunami of questions lol  Not kidding! Benson got off easy that day 😉 Seriously, though, you can enjoy seeing the clips of his Disney animation reels on his site (Frozen, Moana, Big Hero, Zootopia, Wreck It Ralph, Ralph Breaks the Internet) as I just did. SUCH a treat! 😁🤗😎🥰🤩…

Another man I was ignorant about was multi-talented Raj Haldar 😮 I already knew about his very cool book P is for Pterodactyl, but he is actually cool as in “rapper” cool. Yep, Raj is also known as “Lushlife,” an American rapper, composer and record producer 😎 He was SUCH a sweetie 😊…

Author/Illustrator Sharee Miller is all smiles — as she should be! Along with illustrating the “Shai & Emma” chapter book series, there’s no question she knows a thing or two about hair 👍 Princess Hair is a picture book that celebrates ALL kinds of styles and textures of black hair, while Don’t Touch My Hair! addresses personal space and the importance of asking permission. SO important! …

One of several Caldecott Medal Winners 🏆🎨🏆 present at this festival, the first I came to was none other than Chris Raschka. (I first saw him at the Bank Street Bookstore.) He’s surrounded by his own personal mountain of the many books he’s authored and/or illustrated. The Hello, Goodbye Window was Chris’s first Caldecott won in 2006 (yes, first!), the second in 2012 for his very popular A Ball for Daisy 🐕🤩 …

One thing’s for sure, author/illustrator Alyssa Satin Capucilli is never short on fans 🥰 I can tell you my granddaughter LOVES her Biscuit books, one of which I purchased last time ’round 🤗💙😎 …

Airlie Anderson has authored and illustrated LOTS of wonderful board and picture books, her most recent Neither being one of the choices made for Midland School’s library 😄📚. I purchased Ten Little Ducks for my granddaughter because she loves moving parts, but didn’t know till my daughter-in-law informed me — it’s a song! 🤭🎵…

It’s hard to be online or in a bookstore without seeing Jean Reidy‘s new book Truman, a tale about bravery and love 🥰 This time around I came away with a copy of her 🚛 Busy Builders, Busy Week! (for my d-in-law, Suzanne’s sister, Melissa) 👷‍♂️😁😎…

And how cool is it that Truman‘s illustrator, Lucy Ruth Cummins, was also at the fest?! 😎It’s the most recent release in her impressive list of books 👍📚💜…

A name and face you see regularly on Twitter is Jarrett Lerner‘s. This talented author/illustrator is mega-friendly and I was SO happy to finally meet him in person! 😄🤗 He’s on fire with his many graphic novels including his “EngiNerds”  series🔥 😁📚…

Another BIG name in the KidLit-o-sphere is author/illustrator Mike Curato 🤩 I first met Mike, briefly, at the KidLit TV’s 1st Birthday Party in Manhattan. He’s put out some amazing picture books, his most recent and absolutely gorgeous one is What If? 🎨 I’m drawn to it every time I see it face front on a bookshelf! It was great seeing him again 😎😄 …

There are some people who’ve got it all, and without a doubt, Josh Funk is one of them — a true Renaissance Man 🖋🎵🎁🎭 He’s a cherished KidLit pal and I can never say enough about him, his funny, lovable, generous nature, and his many talents. This author is SO popular, I had to go back to his table several times to catch a window when there wasn’t a line of eager fans waiting to meet him and get books signed! The perfect place to check out the many facets of Josh is on his info-and-fun-packed website; it’s like a little KidLit Amusement Park! 🎡🎢

I and my family own several of Josh’s creations, and this year I was thrilled to finally get my copy of Lost in the Library 😁. I was excited about this book since the first time he announced that he was commissioned to write it by the 🦁 New York Public Library 🦁 (one of my FAVorite places!) 🥰📚😎💚…

Ever since I first saw the gorgeous cover of Sayantani DasGupta‘s novel, The Serpent’s Secret, (the first in a series) on John Schumacher’s blog, I’ve been a fan 🤩 Every moment with her was delightful…

A fellow fan and I really enjoyed talking with her, and there was so much at Sayantani’s table to enjoy along with her books! Her husband had gifted her with a custom phone cover 📞donning her main character, Kiranmala. (Sorry, it’s blurry!) …

…and a friend gifted her with this fantastic, intricate chest filled with all the elements of the book! We were truly blown away…

Through the years the lovely Tracey Baptiste has not only graced the Princeton Book Festival, but our own NJSCBWI 🖋😁📚 Author of a wide array of books, her “Jumbies” series is a HUGE hit! 🤗😍🌟 …

Another prolific, talented children’s book creator is cartoonist Amy Ignatow 🎨 She’s been creating an impressive list of graphic novels and has now added a picture book, her newest release The Cutest Thing Ever. And I must say — it is! 🥰👍…

Joan Holub, an author with a book list the size that can be rivaled by few others 📚📚📚📚📚, was as cheerful as can be when I went to her table to have a copy of This Little Trailblazer signed for my d-in-law’s niece 😁😎❤…

These happy faces belong to YA novelist, Kristina Forest, and MG novelist, Laurie Morrison 🖋 In this pic you can see the eye-catching covers of Kristina’s debut novel I Wanna Be Where You Are, and Laurie’s first novel of two, Every Shiny Thing. This is when I REALLY wish I had a clone designated JUST to read! 🕒📚🤭…

West Coast author/illustrator Whitney Gardner made it east to share and sign her novels, both prose and graphic 😎📚👍 I am ALways in awe of illustrators of graphic novels. Man, that’s a lot of work! ✏🎨🖌…

Anica Mrose Rissi is the prolific author of a very diversified body of work including her “Anna Banana” series 🍌 and YA novel Always Forever Maybe 📝📚  And as far as her picture books, she’s certainly lucking out with illustrators! Two of my favorites: Zachariah Ohora and Charles Santoso 🥰😁😎🎨…

I have been a fan of Scott Magoon‘s for ages 🤩 and was over the “balloon” when I saw he was finally going to be in Princeton 😁🎈🌛 Here he is with my already-signed-by-Ariel-Bernstein copy of one of my favorite picture books I Have a Balloon 🎈👌💙🤗  I also bet you can spy a famous KidLit author (behind him) and the book they collaborated on (to his left) 😉😯😄…

Longtime treasured friend Ame Dyckman will ALways have a smile for anyone and everyone, one of the many lovable things about her 😃🥰❤ And anyone who follows her on Twitter knows just how witty she is 🤣Her ever-increasing pile of books has recently been expanded to include her “Wee Beasties” board book series and Dandy 🌻picture book. It is priceless, certainly for the lawn-caring dads of the world 🦁, but the thing I personally love the best is that the main character’s name is the same as my granddaughter’s: Charlotte 🧡💛💚💙💜 Ame was just as excited to sign it as I was to get it! 😁😎🥰 Next year I plan on finally getting Read the Book, Lemmings! (see it on the left?) 😁📚 …

Now THIS guy is just terrific — Sweetheart of sweethearts — the ever-talented pal-o-mine Zachariah Ohora 🥰🤗 Like Ame, he too has an ever-growing book list (some of which they co-collaborated on like Wolfie the Bunny and Read the Book, Lemmings!). His latest release Who Wet My Pants? could only have been written by the likes of Bob Shea, and who better to illustrate it than Zach?🎨🤩😎👍 …

And one of the most fun things of the day was seeing what resulted from Zach doodlling on his tablecloth. Young fans asked to join in with their own very creative art 🎨👌💚…

Lovin’ this pic of these three KidLit superstars 😍🤩😎…

I REALLY love that author Claire Legrand continues to participate in this festival. It’s one of the highlights getting to see her as I make my rounds 🥰. I haven’t finished the oh-so-creative The Cabinet of Curiosities, but it awaits near my bedside for whenever I can pick at it ⏳📚🤭 Claire has a wide array of books; the two she’s holding are from her Empirium Trilogy⚔, Furyborn (book 1) and Kingsbane (book 2) 👍…

YA Fantasy authors Addie Thorley and Elizabeth Lim have a LOT to be smiling about 😄 With “killer” titles and covers like Addie’s An Affair of Poisons and Elizabeth’s Spin the Dawn, they can’t go wrong and, after all, they’re signing books at the Princeton Book Festival! Where are my book-reading clones when I need them?! 😠 …

When having to limit my purchases 💰 along with the fact that I already have novels here I’ve yet to read, I decided I would buy only ONE novel. I knew from the first page that Padma Venkatraman‘s The Bridge Home was a keeper. I couldn’t wait to purchase it, but especially to meet her. I was not disappointed! 🥰This oceanographer with stories filling her heart is as brilliant, engaging and wonderfully down-to-earth as I could’ve imagined. And that dress she was wearing? GORgeous! 🤩👗🌟

Padma‘s writing voice is so compelling, I have a feeling I’m going to be just as compelled to read her other novels as well 👌😃 …

This reader turned teacher 🍎 turned writer’s work spans from picture books through YA. Though Susan Campbell Bartoletti is more well-known for her nonfiction, having won a Newbery Honor 🏆 for Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler’s Shadow, she is also acclaimed for her fiction, here holding award-winning novel The Boy Who Dared

Both these happy ladies who, to me, look like they could be sisters 👩👩, are cartoonist author/illustrators both holding graphic novels: Kayla Miller with Click, the first of her “Olive” series, and Molly Brooks with the first book in her Sanity & Tallulah series. SOOooooo impressive! 😮👍😍 …

My first exciting opportunity to meet icon authors Jane Yolen, and her daughter Heidi Stemple was at this festival back in 2017 (I have Owl Moon!). It was such a joy talking to both of them and I was once again really looking forward to seeing them this year. One thing I was “over the moon” about 🌝was that illustrator extraordinaire Matt Phelan would also be there (I also have his books from previous festivals). You see, this trio of talents collaborated on their mesmerizing book A Kite for Moon which was inspired by the first moon landing 🚀🌔🏳…

When I was looking through the list of the many authors and illustrators who would be attending and came across Gareth Hinds, the illustrator of Samurai Rising, bells went off because my boyfriend, Mark, is obsessed with “all things Japan.” 🎌⛩ I’m so glad because I became aware of this super-talented illustrator 🎨👌. I was wowed when I actually got to look at the black and white ink illustrations throughout the book, and was in awe while watching him sketch the “kabuto” (helmet) with his signature (which you can see by clicking on my signature montage at the end of this post, then zoom in). By the way, Mark thoroughly enjoyed the book! 👍😎😁…

Jay Cooper is the gifted author/illustrator 📝🎨of the “Pepper Partyand Spy Next Door” series. He’s also illustrated lift-the-flap board books by Jeffrey Burton, and the “Bots” series by Russ Bolts. 🥰 He’s gleefully holding up The Most Annoying Robots in the Universe, the first book in that series …

I didn’t get to talk to Jerry Craft at the festival, but did have that pleasure a few years back at the Bank Street Book Bonanza where he did an art demonstration 🎨. Wow, is he loaded with talent! 😍 His most recent author/illustrator release is New Kid, a graphic novel …

Mike Moran‘s picture book Poopendous 🧻💩is one of dozens of books he’s illustrated. When purchasing 2 copies (for Cynthia to give her “poop-fascinated” grandchildren) Mike told me it’s a very popular subject with kids and he’s signed copies that were being given as gifts to adults! 😁🤣👍🚽 …

John Bemelmans Marciano has not only carried on the legacy of Madeline, his grandfather Ludwig Bemelmans‘ worldwide success (I purchased John’s Madeline and the Old House in Paris 🏩back in 2014), but has established quite the publishing career himself with dozens of books under that name. Now, using pen name Johnny Marciano he is the author and illustrator of his “Klawde” series 👍😃…

I loved seeing Patrick McDonnell again 🥰. I purchased one of his “Mutts” books a few years ago (see that little red one with the heart?) and whenever I see he’ll be here, I so want to have a copy of Tek 📴 I still don’t sigh but definitely will some day! Patrick said they hadn’t ordered that book this year, so I would’ve had to pre-order it no matter what. Maybe next time? I love that book so much! 🥰😎💙…

Until we got into conversation (me? conversation?), I hadn’t realized that Sarah Jacoby had attended our NJSCBWI conference which, gratefully, helped open her “KidLit” door 🚪. The first time I read The Important Thing About Margaret Wise Brown — I was floored. Leave it to Mac Barnett to have the most brilliant, original take on anyone or anything, and Sarah’s illustrations were the perfect match 🎨. You bet I have a copy and Cynthia got one for her school too 🏫 😁🤗 Yay!…

The last time I saw Alan Katz was in 2015 when he was accompanied by his wife (who’d lost her cell phone egads! but was found) and his son. This year he was on his own, and as pleasant and funny as ever 😆. Alan has authored all sorts of books and the two he holds here are from his “Awesome Achievers” series 👩‍🚀👨‍🔬🔬📳💡 If you happen to be a Facebook user, that’s definitely a place you can enjoy his sure-to-make-you-smile wit 🤡 🥰…

Jessica Love. What an appropriate name for a KidLit author/illustrator, right? Well, this talented creator splashed onto the scene in a very big way with her debut picture book Julian is a Mermaid 💧🌊. She has every right to be elated about this beautiful book — a timely subject with absolutely stunning artwork 🎨👍! …

David Soman and Jacky Davis, a KidLit husband/wife team (there are several in the community!) are too busy working on their super-popular Ladybug Girl 🐞series to get lost in the rabbit holes of things like social media, but their fans are happy they make time to attend this one-of-a-kind festival each year! 🤩😎🧡 …

These two merry gents, Doug Salati and Rowboat Watkins, happen to be studio mates with Brian Floca and Sophie Blackall (UP! next…) and lucky for us, like Ninja Turtles 🐢, this 4-pack conquers events together, so we get to meet all of them 🤗.

Doug has actually illustrated for, yes, the Tomie dePaola, and this beautiful book Lawrence in the Fall 🦊🍁🍂was written by Matthew Farina. Rowboat is, as you might expect, a very humorous author/illustrator; let’s say he’s the “Michelangelo” Turtle of the group. Not kidding — a smile is glued to my face 😁with every word he writes, and oblivious me only just now in examining this pic realized why he wouldn’t lower this book Big Bunny 🐰🤡from his face! …

It fills my heart that Caldecott Medal Winner 🏆 Brian Floca has been attending the Princeton Festival for years now 🥰😎❤  I first met him in 2014, the year he won the medal for Locomotive, (I have a first edition copy 😁) one of his many beautiful books

As the day would have it, with my carefully planned “climb” through the tents, I finally reached the day’s “peak” with none other than this 2-time Caldecott Medalist 🏆🏆 Sophie Blackall. I got to her table at 3:55, just before the event closing. Lucky for Sophie it left no time to really talk. Believe me, I easily could’ve blabbed with her forever, but barely had time to blubber over her extraordinary body of work, or medal-donning books Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear (2016 — I now have a signed copy!) and Hello Lighthouse (2019) 🤗🥰😎📚😃…

What a way to end the day! I planted my flag 🏳 on this festival’s summit, feeling a jubilant sense of accomplishment. I made my descent, as fulfilled as ever with the wonder of a KidLit-filled excursion and bags filled with books to prove I made the climb! 🗻📚…

Books my family ordered:

Books I already owned or purchased at the festival, most of which I was gifted by my boyfriend and family. Yes, THIS is what I typically want for my birthday! 😁😎 …

And this, the thing that delights me to “thin air” delirium every year:

(for a closer look, “right click” and “Open Link in New Tab” to zoom)

The Princeton Public Library and JaZams Bookstore are responsible for putting together this mountainous undertaking each year and they do a Kilimanjaro-like job (which my brother, Chris, actually climbed!). There is nothing like the KidLit book-loving community. I will forever cherish and feel grateful to be a part of it in my small way, and plan on making this festival a part of my KidLit book life for years to come 🥰🤗.

Thanks to ALL involved for another unforgettable day  🧡😄🧡👌🧡😎🧡

 

(*photo of Joanne from JaZams, courtesy of Euna Kwon Brosserman, author of an excellent article about JaZams Bookstore)

 

 

15 thoughts on “UP!–Princeton Children’s Book Festival 2019!

  1. Oh wow, Donna. I think you were in heaven. What a wonderful collection of books (and autographs). So many wonderful writers and illustrators, and books. I thought your post would never end. I recognise so many of the names and remember you writing about so many of them before. What amazing journey to make. I’m so pleased you could do it this time.

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