My two blog picks:
Context: Blog is run by a writer who also is a Kirkus review writer, with a focus on picture books and illustrated novels. This blog has been consistently active since 2006!
Content: Tons of great information! Thousands of blog posts are well-written, with useful links for further exploration. Posts are entertaining, and contain interviews, book reviews, and other related information. There is a Category called Cristiana Clerici’s International Spotlights, where an Italian blogger and picture book aficionado posts interviews and book reviews. Unfortunately, there are only 8 posts with her, and the last one was in 2012. All of them are fascinating – I wish there were more!
Look & feel: Has a great layout, using lots of images in posts, creating appeal and interest. I love title, and the black and white header art from Alice Through the Looking Glass.
The theme template used has a very narrow page, however, so the site loses some valuable horizontal real estate for sidebar information and white space.
Navigation: Navigation is outstanding, though sidebar information is a little long for manageability. Might be time to update lists, and maybe convert Archives into a drop-down menu, since there are so many great resources below that long scroll of archives. Some viewers may never see that list!
Context: Written by an elementary teacher librarian, this blog has been active since 2008!
Content: Hundreds of interviews, book reviews, pathfinders, and professional information. Posts are well-written, and include images and links for more information.
Look & feel: The layout is outstanding. Nice use of images and white space. Header has a nice logo that makes clear to whom the site is targeted: “A site to help parents learn about great books for their kids age 4-14.” Visual appeal with high relevance!
Navigation: Organization is clear and the site is easy to use. The blogger includes Age Level and Book Type filters for book reviews, so you can narrowly target your book review search. Sidebars are logical and uncluttered, and therefore easy to dig back into older posts easily.
Teresa chose Watch. Connect. Read., a book review site rich with images and videos to support the reviewed works. Images include primary source photos/scans that related to historical texts – a really nice addition to the review and book images themselves. The deep-dive into each book makes it a unique add to blog reviews.
Nanette chose I’m Here, I’m Queer, What the Hell Do I Read?, with reviews of LGBTQ books, and other resources for queer kids. It’s a site that is welcoming to all – including straight allies. My two selections are broader in scope, and this targeted site provides useful and specific reviews and information.
Finally, Sandy wrote about the American Indians in Children’s Literature (AICL) blog. The blog provides analysis and resources for indigenous peoples, specifically in YA and children’s literature. The site includes lists of book awards from the American Indian Library Association, along with filters for reviews, and in-depth articles.