A tale of 2 books about the VP’s bunny: one from John Oliver, the other Pence’s family

March 30, 2018

(Published in the News and Observer, 3/29/18) http://www.newsobserver.com/latest-news/article207227879.html Easter is definitely the time for rabbit-y children’s books, but this season it’s a bunny beat bunny world. Politics have entered the children’s book ring, and there are two titles facing off. read more »


Audio books continue to surge in popularity. Here are some must-listen titles right now. 2017’s Recommended Audios

March 25, 2018

(Published in the News and Observer, March 25, 2018 For me, listening to audio books is not just pleasurable, but critical. It’s not only that I’m print-weary, but there are mornings I’m so scattered that only listening to audios calms read more »


The best 2017 audiobooks for kids, teens and young readers

published in the News and Observer, March 25, 2018 http://www.newsobserver.com/entertainment/books/article206784029.html I love audio books. And for both children and adult books, I look to the same characteristics. I seek excellent narrators who add dimension to characters, strengthen evocative scenes, dramatize read more »


Author strives to show a different face of homelessness: ‘She’s more than this one issue

February 26, 2018

In the acknowledgments for Brenda Rufener’s debut novel, “Where I Live,” the Durham author speaks of “writing from the heart.” She does just that in telling the story of teenager Linden Rose, whose intelligence and wit make her successful in read more »


In the Black Lives Matter era, the literary world has faced a ‘wake-up call’; Interview with Nic Stone

January 21, 2018

Atlanta author Nic Stone’s son was only 5 months old when Jordan Davis, an African-American teen, was fatally shot at a gas station in Florida after an argument about the volume of his music. It occurred to Stone that one read more »


2017 Wilde Awards for the best books for young readers and young adults

December 20, 2017

(published in the Raleigh News and Observer, December 20, 2017)   You can walk into a bookstore and, in a relatively short time, determine the worth of a 32-page picture book. But do you choose a longer book? Which ones will read more »


Talking with Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

December 18, 2017

(Interview published in Audiofile Magazine December, 2017)   Those who listen to Kimberly Brubaker Bradley’s THE WAR I FINALLY WON may be surprised to find they love it even more than her award-winning first book, THE WAR THAT SAVED MY read more »


The best children’s books of 2017, perfect for gifts or your kid’s home library

November 20, 2017

published in the News and Observer NOVEMBER 19, 2017 06:00 AM I began reviewing children’s books more than 30 years ago because of book-greed – and a husband who said we couldn’t spend half of our budget on my children’s read more »


‘Anything is Possible’ is an audio book you’ll listen to twice

November 13, 2017

published in the Raleigh News and Observer OCTOBER 30, 2017     Elizabeth Strout follows her 2016 “My Name is Lucy Barton” with this year’s “Anything is Possible,” again narrated by Kimberly Farr. (Both book and audio from Random House). read more »


12 Books by Local Authors to Add to Your Kids’ Library

October 28, 2017

  The wonderful Susan Romaine, one of the founders of PORCH and initiator of Planting Hope sent me this link. This book has had such a nice run. I was proud and happy to make this list published in Durham read more »