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Author: Ted Anderson

That Was Then, This is Now guest post: Dealing With Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede

Dealing-with-dragons-first-editionMarch is Women’s History Month, and in honor of this I asked Sarah Debraski if she would let me use her “That Was Then, This is Now” series to talk about a book that helped make me a feminist. After all, what’s more appropriate for Women’s History Month than a man taking over something that a woman created? Wait, that’s not right.

Anyway, the book is Dealing With Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede, and it was one of my favorite books as a youngster. I still remembered most of the basic plot: the princess Cimorene is tired of being a princess, so she runs away and deliberately gets herself kidnapped by a dragon, which turns out to be the best thing that could’ve happened to her. She gets into swordfights, foils the plots of sinister wizards, uncovers a conspiracy at the heart of dragon society, and ends up having quite a lot of experiences that just aren’t proper for a princess. It’s a parody of fairy tales and the fantasy genre, but a gentle parody, poking fun at some of the logical flaws in these worlds while still acknowledging the fun you can have in them.

I was delighted to find, on rereading Dealing With Dragons, that it was just as good as I remembered it.

An interview with Dr. Joni Bodart, author of ‘They Suck, They Bite, They Eat, They Kill: The Psychological Meaning of Supernatural Monsters in Young Adult Fiction’

The Hub is proud to present another in our sporadic series of podcasts, this time an interview with Dr. Joni Bodart, author of the recently-released…

31 Days of Authors: A Conversation with Gareth Hinds

Teen Read Week is officially October 16th through 22nd, but here at The Hub, we’re celebrating all month long with 31 Days of Authors. On each day in October, we’ll bring you author interviews and profiles and reflections on what YALSA-recognized books have meant to us.

Cover to Gareth Hinds' The Odyssey
Cover to Gareth Hinds' The Odyssey

Comics artist Gareth Hinds is a creator looking both forward and back. His four highly-regarded graphic novels to date have all won acclaim for their beautiful art and innovative storytelling techniques—but these fresh and original books are all adaptations of much older works, including Homer’s Odyssey and Shakespeare’s King Lear. His adaptation of Beowulf was on YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels list for 2008, and his Odyssey made it on this year’s list. He also created the art for this year’s Teen Read Week (which began yesterday!), “Picture It @ Your Library.” His personal website can be found here. In this article, we ask him about his influences, his process, his future plans, and his work in video games. Check it out after the break!

Out of Our Comfort Zones, episode 2: Ted reads “Beauty” and Sarah reads “Beasts”!

In this ongoing series, Sarah Debraski and I try to broaden our horizons: we each made a list of the types of YA books we didn’t read, and then each chose a book for the other person to read from those categories, to deliberately force ourselves outside of our comfort zones and read something we normally wouldn’t. In our second episode, Sarah picks a fairy-tale retelling for me, while I pick a supernatural-horror graphic novel for her. Read on and check the podcast below for our opinions!

Out of Our Comfort Zones: Ted and Sarah read SOULLESS and I KILL GIANTS!

Sarah Debraski and I decided to try something interesting to broaden our horizons: we each made a list of the types of YA books we didn’t read, and then each chose a book for the other person to read from those categories, to deliberately force ourselves outside of our comfort zones and read something we normally wouldn’t. Did it work? Read (and listen!) on in this post and podcast.

31 Days of Teens’ Top Ten: Comparing the TTT with the BBYA!

Teens’ Top Ten is a “teen choice” list, where teens nominate and choose their favorite books of the previous year! Nominators are members of teen book groups in fifteen school and public libraries around the country. Nominations are posted on Support Teen Literature Day during National Library Week, and teens across the country vote on their favorite titles each year. Each day during the month of May, The Hub will feature a post about Teens’ Top Ten. Be sure to check in daily as we visit past winners and current nominees!

For my post on the Teens’ Top Ten, I thought I’d do a comparison with another list of great books for teens: YALSA’s Best Fiction for Young Adults list, formerly known as the Best Books for Young Adults. Unlike the TTT, which is chosen by teen readers, the BBYA/BFYA is chosen by a committee made up of YALSA members. I went through and checked to see what books, if any, the two lists have had in common over the years.

Transgender/genderqueer/transvestite manga!

We’ve had a couple posts on The Hub that talk about transgender fiction, and there’s a list of transgender titles on the YALSA wiki. Cris Beam’s I Am J is even on the list of nominees for the 2011 Teens’ Top Ten (which you can vote for between August 22 and September 16, hint hint). But what I haven’t seen mentioned as much are manga titles with transgender, genderqueer, or transvestite characters. Which is ironic, because sometimes it’s harder for me to think of a manga series that doesn’t have at least one guy dressing as a girl, or vice versa. So I thought I’d do a short list of three of the best manga I know with characters whose gender identities are far from fixed.