BBAW Interview with Marjorie of PaperTigers


I was paired with Marjorie of PaperTigers.  I’ll let her tell you a little about herself and her blog, but I think you’ll really enjoy stopping by the PaperTigers blog.  It is fun and easy to use for recommendations and fun features.  Here’s Marjorie…

1.  How did your blog get its start and focus?

PaperTigers is part of Pacific Rim Voices, which aims to promote tolerance and multi-cultural understanding through books.  PaperTigers focuses on children’s and YA books and we publish a web-based magazine, with regular issues on a given theme throughout the year.  The blog, which we started in May 2007, was and is a great way to complement the website by expanding on current features there, as well as providing space to go beyond it!  It also means we can draw together news and events from around the world and take an active part in the vibrant Kidlitosphere.

2.  Can you tell us a little about the contributors?

There are currently four of us: Aline in San Francisco, Corinne in Vancouver, Sally in Winnipeg and me in a rural corner of the UK.  We are all parents with, needless to say, a passion for books  We haven’t all met each other in person yet – so this November will be very special, as the whole PaperTigers team is meeting up for a few days in San Francisco… You can find out more about us here…

3. What is your favorite feature of the blog?

Yikes – that’s really hard to answer!  But I think what I love most is that our blog brings together so many different voices – not just in what we write ourselves but by focusing on the riches on offer from such a diverse range of writers and illustrators, and indeed those elsewhere who write about them.  I am forever having to add another book to my To Be Read list – and Corinne’s monthly ‘Calendar of Events’  is a veritable mine of information!

Of our own regular features, I love our Around the World in 100 Bookshelves, ( )where parents send in photographs of their children’s bookshelves.  We’re at Number 13 so far and they’ve come from Canada, Hong Kong, India, the Philippines, Sweden, and the UK… Our second bimonthly draw takes place TODAY! (ie Sept. 15th!)

4. With the focus on children and young adult books, what are a few of your favorites so far this year?

Sticking to books that were actually published this year, three of my favorite picture-books have been Allen Say’s Erika-San (Houghton Mifflin, 2009), Etsuko Watanabe’s My Japan (Kane/Miller, 2009) and Ambellin Kwaymullina’s Caterpillar and Butterfly (Fremantle Press, 2009).  Then there’s Grace Lin’s beautifully illustrated middle-reader, Where the Mountain Meets the Moon (Little, Brown and Company, 2009); and I was bowled over by the YA-adult The Holy Tortilla and a Pot of Beans: A Feast of Short Fictionby Carmen Tafolla (Wings Press, 2009).

5. What is the best part of the book blogging community?

There are just so many fabulous book blogs out there – and it really is a community, sharing ideas, pooling resources.  I love the way we come together for regular features like Poetry Friday.  There are some very generous people putting a lot of energy into initiatives like Carnivals, Literacy Roundups, the Cybils – and indeed BBAW.  It is so easy to get drawn into following link after link, from blog to blog – and that To Be Read list is constantly being replenished!

6.  Have you always loved reading?  Have a favorite book growing up?

Yes, I was a total bookworm and read everywhere.  My bedroom was in our attic and I had a great system of juuuuustholding down my light switch without it clicking so that my Mum would think I was asleep when she turned off the stair nightlight to check on me – then I’d carry on reading until 2 or 3 in the morning… I can’t do that anymore!

Hmmm, favorites… I swallowed Enid Blyton whole then went on to the Anne books – and once I start Anne of Green Gables I still just have to carry on until I’ve read them all; the same with Little Women and the Little House… books.  As I got older, I started going back in time so that by the time I was 14, I was revelling in Walter Scott.  My friends thought I was very strange!  But my Mum gave me a key piece of advice, which was to skip the first couple of chapters and go back to them later… I recommend it!

7. Are you a book buyer, downloader, or borrower?

A buyer and a borrower – we’re lucky in our very small town that we have a library and a bookshop!  And I love second-hand bookshops – I never know what I’m going to find and I can’t help it, I always come out with something…

8.  I love quotes.  Do you have a favorite?

 My current favorite, which I came across when researching my article ( our current issue of PaperTigers, was said by a six-year-old child in Hong Kong: “When I hear some lovely music, I feel that I can fly”.

And one I have above my desk:  “Things are getting bad – please send chocolate!”

9.  If you were trapped in the life of one fictional character who would you choose?

Elizabeth Bennet…

I’m so glad that I was paired with such a wonderful blogger.  Thanks, Marjorie!