Walter Dean Myers: A Voice Worth Reading and Hearing

Leave it to the distinguished writer Walter Dean Myers to call attention to a statistic worthy of attention -- and change. Of 3,200 children's books published in 2013, only 93 were about black people. Read Myers' opinion piece in the New York Times and it will raise awareness about the need for meaningful characters who help young readers discover their own identities. As always, Myers states it well, and it applies to all: "What I wanted, needed really, was to become an integral and valued part of the mosaic that I saw around me."

Read the entire piece at

"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" Reaches 50

Charlie turns 50? Yes, it's true. This child of literature has reached middle age while managing to maintain his youthful appeal. As a way to honor author Roald Dahl's boy darling, Random House is releasing several editions of "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," one featuring the original illustrations by Joseph Schindelman. Although we have come to love how artist Quentin Blake has handled this timeless tale, it's worth it to take a look at how the book first appeared.

Above is Schindelman's version of Charlie. Below is a rendering of Schindelman, who lives on Long Island.

Look for one of many wonderful versions of "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" at Bank Street Bookstore.