December 11, 2013 3:45PM
Shoppers looking for great Christmas gifts for children and young readers have an array of books by Kansas authors to choose from, according to Casie Hermansson, professor of English at Pittsburg State University. Hermansson will present “How to Write for Children and Youth: A Writer’s Guide,” at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 12, in the Wilkinson Alumni Center.
“For middle grade readers I suggest a new series from a Kansas City writer Claire Caterer, “The Key and the Flame,” Hermansson said.
Hermansson described the book as a contemporary novel set in England with time travel to the Middle Ages. It is intended to be a series of five novels and is published by Simon and Schuster.
“It's not too late to enjoy Clare Vanderpool's 2011 Newbery winning novel “Moon Over Manifest,” Hermansson said.
For area children, “Moon Over Manifest” has the added attraction of being set in Frontenac, Kan.
Hermansson also recommended one of her favorite books for older middle grade readers and teens, “A Curse Dark as Gold,” by Elizabeth Bunce, another award-winning Kansas City novelist.
“It's a fabulous and dimensioned retelling of “Rumplestiltskin,” Hermansson said.
And of course there’s also Hermansson’s own picture book for children 3-8 years old, “Clever Milly,” a child-friendly original story based on the Bluebeard fairy tale. In that book, Mr. Fox comes to call on Milly at the henhouse, but she finds his charm suspicious. Clever Milly has a plan to discover the truth and ensure that Mr. Fox visits no more henhouses in future.
Whatever authors or titles shoppers choose, Hermansson said, books make great Christmas gifts for children and young people.
“Books are gifts that can inspire and captivate youngsters in ways nothing else under the tree can,” she said.