Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


I stopped visiting Goodreads quite a while ago, but needing a break from drawing yesterday, I found this review of Randall de Seve's wonderful book.

Very sweet! Not sure I'd want to decorate someones heinie though...

Friday, December 13, 2013

Oliver hits a list

I just received news that Oliver and his Alligator made BookPage's best of 2013 list for picture books!


Yay Oliver!

they keep coming

Another very nice review of Oliver, this time from Shelf Awareness:

Paul Schmid's (A Pet for Petunia) hero Oliver, a cute-as-a-button, pastel-pencil blob of a boy, is scared of the first day of school. Clutching an apple and staring, pink-cheeked, at a long, scary sidewalk that leads to school, Oliver feels that his "brave [isn't] nearly as big as it [needs] to be." So he decides to bring along an alligator to protect him. If facing your fears is too hard, why not ingest them?

Oliver cues the alligator with a command to "Munch, munch!" when he encounters the teacher, a friendly girl, the rest of the class, the classroom decorations. But once they have all been swallowed, Oliver begins to feel... lonely. The alligator, an expressionless reptile consisting of a green outline, three stripes down its middle and small feet, swells so large it can no longer fit on the page--and yet, it keeps munching, right up to the book's deeply satisfying conclusion. --Allie Jane Bruce, children's librarian, Bank Street College of Education
Discover: A boy, unable to face his fears, picks up an alligator to ingest them.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

a very nice summary of Oliver

From the Books For Kids blog:


When is an alligator not an alligator?

When it’s the first day of school and a very small boy feels as if his “brave” isn’t up to facing all the strangeness alone.

With his fantasy guardian at his side, Paul feels more in control of the situation. When a strange woman who looks nothing like his mom asks his name, all he has to say to his alligator are two words:


The lady is gone, and Oliver’s alligator is a little plumper. A girl who tries to talk to him gets the same message.

Oliver begins to feel a lot better, as his magic words make all of the bright colors and commotion in the classroom go away. His pale green and pink alligator is now as roly poly as a beach ball, and all the activity and noise are gone. Oliver pulls up a stool beside his rotund alligator in the empty room and waits for school to start. It’s very quiet.


Then Oliver hears singing and laughter. Somewhere nearby kids are having fun, and it’s all happening inside his alligator. School is on the inside!

It’s time for Oliver to say “Munch Munch!” one more time and put himself into the scene where the action is, in Paul Schmid’s first-day tale, Oliver and his Alligator (Hyperion, 2013).

Schmid earned a 2010 fellowship to study with the late Maurice Sendak, and it shows in this rather quirky tale of dealing with the first day jitters. While Schmid’s storyline shows the Sendakian hand (cf. the personification of Max’s angry feelings as Wild Things, in Where the Wild Things Are,) Schmid’s illustrations, done in soft, grainy pencil lines and pastel colors, are another matter. His “wild thing,” is a fuzzy-ish alligator who seemingly has no mouth or teeth with which to munch anybody, and Schmid’s narration is as non-threatening as his little first-day-of-school hero, who finds a way to face his fear, just as Max tamed his anger. Some children deal with an intimidating situation by daydreaming, mentally removing themselves, and Schmid’s subliminal message of how to put themselves back into life will find its mark.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

book launch party!

Come on down to Secret Garden Books in Ballard Tuesday night, June 25th to help celebrate my new book 'Oliver and his Alligator'. There will be treats and beverages (adult beverages too,) and signings and readings and other fine party things.

7 pm
Secret Garden Books
2214 NW Market St
Seattle, WA 98107