Our school librarian, Sara, was voted the best in New York City (or New York State or was it the world? I am not sure exactly but she is super).
Well, whatever the bestowment she is deserving of some positive attention and applause for providing us with a well run, well stocked library that continues to be the epicenter of our school community.
In addition to all of her day to day responsibilities she also makes it possible for guest authors/illustrators of exquisite children’s literature to visit us from time to time.
Recently she arranged a reading and book signing from Swedish-born artist Laura Ljungkvist. Laura’s books are unique in that she creates illustrations from a single continuous line that runs through all of the pages of each book. Many of her books include the words “Follow the Line” in the title and encourage children to do just that.
I was especially excited to meet her because I have been a fan of her book Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs since I first encountered it a few years ago. It is visually stunning. Vibrant clean colors, precise text and of course her signature ‘line’ all come together in a virtual feast of delight.
The evil queen is simply fabulous!
I shared my joy with Laura over Snow White but she confided with me – and now I share that with you, I hope she does not mind – that this book was a compromise with her publisher.
She prefers her other books which are original ideas rather than a reworking of a well known fairy tale. This book came about after 9/11 and in her author’s notes she writes “The completion of this book marks the beginning of a road lined with challenges and miracles”.
Don’t tell her but this one is still my favorite.
After Laura’s readings (she had two sessions with our preschool and lower elementary classes) she stayed to have lunch with our aspiring artists. I was very much impressed with the fact that she didn’t seem to want to get out of there.
She was relaxed and ‘present’ with the students. She answered all of their questions and really listened to what they had to share. It is visits like this that the children will remember.
Afterwards she was kind enough to pose for a picture with me. Because of Sara I am getting quite an notable album of photos and autographed works. I love it.
Finally Laura shared a copy of her upcoming book Follow the Line Around the World which I believe she said comes out in May.