Jane O’Connor – Fancy Nancy Saturday Night Sleepover

Fancy Nancy - Saturday Night SleepoverJane O'Connor and Robin Preiss-Glasser vertAbout the Book

When Nancy’s parents win an all-expenses-paid vacation, Nancy and JoJo get to sleep over at their neighbor’s home, Mrs. DeVine’s. But JoJo is a little nervous to sleep at someone else’s house—luckily Nancy is an expert on sleepovers and can help prepare her little sister. The big night arrives, and JoJo and Nancy have a blast at Mrs. DeVine’s. But when it’s time for bed, it turns out Nancy wasn’t as prepared as she thought. Good thing there is nothing better than a sister to make you feel better.

About the Author

Jane O’Connor is an editor at a major publishing house and has written more than seventy books for children, including the New York Times bestselling Fancy Nancy series, which is comprised of over 50 titles so far. She resides (that’s a fancy word for lives) in Manhattan with her husband, Jim. Her two grown sons have fled New York, however, and are both living in Los Angeles.

About the Artist

Robin Preiss Glasser wore tiaras and tutus when she danced as a soloist with the Pennsylvania Ballet. Now she happily spends her days in jeans, drawing. She has illustrated many acclaimed picture books, including the now classic and beloved Fancy Nancy series. In 2013, she won the Children’s Choice Award for Best Illustrator of the Year for Fancy Nancy and the Mermaid Ballet. Robin lives in Southern California with her husband, Bob, and two children, Sasha and Ben.

To hear our interview with Jane O’Connor, click on the grey podcast bar below.

Dr. David Ludwig – Always Hungry?

David Ludwig image credit Boston Childrens Hospita 300lAlways Hungry coverMost of what you know about dieting and weight loss is absolutely wrong. In fact, for generations, the medical community has been getting the process backwards: overeating doesn’t make you fat; the process of getting fat makes you overeat.

That is like why, as an interview in Forbes pointed out, nearly $60 billion is spent annually on the U.S. weight loss market and it’s not working. Two-thirds of adults and one-third of children and teens are overweight or obese and dieters who can sustain their weight loss are the “rare exception, rather than the rule”

Dr. David Ludwig’s new book Always Hungry?:Conquer Cravings, Retrain your Fat Cells and Lose Weight not only lays out the case for this radical reinterpretation, but includes clear advice on how you can use this new understanding to actually lose weight and keep it off. This is no fad-of-the-moment diet Dr. Ludwig has both an M.D. And a PhD. He is a noted endocrinologist and Harvard medical school professor.

For over two decades, Dr. Ludwig has been at the forefront of research into weight control. His groundbreaking studies show that overeating doesn’t make you fat; the process of getting fat makes you overeat. That’s because fat cells play a key role in determining how much weight you gain or lose. Low-fat diets work against you, by triggering fat cells to hoard more calories for themselves, leaving too few for the rest of the body. This “hungry fat” sets off a dangerous chain reaction that leaves you feeling ravenous as your metabolism slows down. Cutting calories only makes the situation worse-creating a battle between mind and metabolism that we’re destined to lose. You gain more weight, even as you struggle to eat less food.

ALWAYS HUNGRY? turns dieting on its head with a three-phase program that ignores calories and targets fat cells directly. The recipes and meal plan include luscious high fat foods (like nuts and nut butters, full fat dairy, avocados, and dark chocolate), savory proteins, and natural carbohydrates. The result? Fat cells release their excess calories and you lose weight-and inches-without battling cravings and constant hunger. This is dieting without deprivation.

Dr. Ludwig’s photo courtesy of Boston Children’s Hospital.

To hear our interview with Dr. Ludwig, click on the grey podcast bar below:



Melissa Pope – Storm Buddies

Storm Buddies no background (1)

Melissa Pope-231x300Storms can represent a sudden and frightening change in the environment. They’re noisy and disruptive and can rattle more than windows. If you’ve ever had a child in your family who has been frightened by storms, you’ll be interested in Melissa Pope’s solution. Her own son had that problem and eventually, she found a way to help kids cope.  She shares it through her new book Storm Buddies, and the plush stuffed animals themselves in their cloud pillow.  Melissa spent a number of years as a teacher and that made it easier to identify with them and write the book.

You can hear our interview with her by clicking on the podcast below.

For more information, visit her website here.

Tim Federle, author of ‘Better Nate Than Ever’ on Audiobooks

Heading home for the holidays?  

Better Nate Than EverTim Federle_edited-1This year-end holiday season, over 95 million people are estimated to journey at least 50 miles from home. Grab an audiobook! Christmas and New Year’s are some of the busiest travel times of the year with millions of Americans anticipating hours of unavoidable traffic in the car, gridlock and delays at airports. Audiobooks are the perfect way to transform time that would otherwise be wasted into the most entertaining part of your trip!

It’s time to start a new holiday tradition with audiobooks.  Pick a classic or a favorite story and start a tradition of listening to the book together in your car on your way to your holiday destination. Nearly all of today’s biggest books are available in audio. Read by polished actors, passionate authors, and even celebrities, these CDs and digital downloads are the perfect way to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.  With advancing technology, audiobooks are so easy to get.  They are available as traditional CDs, or as digital downloads directly from your phone, iPad or tablet.  You can also borrow them from your local library.

 Tim Federle is passionate about audiobooks (as an author and also as a narrator).  He’s an author of various genres from young adult to books about cocktails. Much like Tim, audiobooks have great variety too.  You can listen to a book about food and entertaining, the latest young adult novels, short stories, celebrity memoirs, motivational books, and even erotica. The list is as vast as your personal interests. In fact, listening allows you to enjoy a good book while multi-tasking: driving to your holiday destination, preparing the meal, tidying your house for guests, exercising, walking the dog, etc.


BIO:  TIM FEDERLE grew up in Pittsburgh before moving to New York to dance on Broadway. His debut novel for kids, Better Nate Than Ever—described as “Judy Blume as seen through a Stephen Sondheim lens” by Huffington Post—was named a New York Times Notable Children’s Book of 2013. Tim’s audio narration of Better Nate Than Ever and its sequel, Five, Six, Seven, Nate! earned him two prestigious Odyssey Honors from the American Library Association. Earlier this year he recorded Ann Bausum’s Stonewall, one of the first chronicles of the gay rights movement written for young adults. Tim’s own first novel for young adults, The Great American Whatever, will be available March 2016 from Simon & Schuster. Federle travels the country widely to give speeches and master classes on his journey from bullied to Broadway to books.

To hear our interview with the bright and enthusiastic Tim Federle, click on the grey podcast bar below:

Phillip Rhodes – The Southerner’s Cookbook

From the magazine that brought you the New York Times bestselling Southerner’s Handbook and Good Dog comes an heirloom-quality guide to the traditions and innovations that define today’s Southern food culture, with more than 125 recipes and 4-color photography throughout.
The Southerners Cookbook coverPhillip RhodesThe South has long been known as a fine place to dine—from hole-in-the-wall fried chicken joints in Mississippi to roadside barbeque stands in North Carolina to white-tablecloth Creole restaurants in New Orleans. No one ends a trip down South on an empty stomach. Now the editors of the magazine that is defining a new generation of Southern food culture offers its first cookbook. It provides a total immersion into the places, people, and ingredients that have shaped the South’s culinary traditions.
As you would expect from G&G, each recipe tells a story. For some, like those culled from the magazine, the story is associated with the chef. Other recipes include stories that offer context for uniquely regional dishes, like sonker, Piedmont North Carolina’s take on cobbler, or West Indies Salad, which hails not from the Caribbean, but from Mobile, Alabama. For familiar, tried-and-true classics, G&G will offer its own creative twists and updates—think pimento cheese three ways; rabbit-instead-of- chicken and dumplings; or classic Southern sandwiches like Hot Browns or Muffalettas done up as party canapes.
That’s the press release above, but, if anything, it’s too modest about this superb book. And you will very much enjoy our conversation with editor Phillip Rhodes, who exudes both Southern charm and a warm sense of humor. To listen, just click on the grey podcast bar below.

Leslie S. Klinger – The Sherlock Holmes Book

Leslie KlingerThe Sherlock Holmes BookWhether it’s the mystery, the intrigue, or the captivating character of Holmes himself, Americans across the nation clamor to see their favorite detective portrayed on film and TV by such stars as Robert Downey Jr. and Benedict Cumberbatch. The Sherlock Holmes Book, the latest in DK’s award-winning Big Ideas Simply Explained series, tackles this most “elementary” of subjects—the world ofSherlock Holmes, as told by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Whether it’s the mystery, the intrigue, or the captivating character of Holmes himself, Americans across the nation clamor to see their favorite detective portrayed on film and TV by such stars as Robert Downey Jr. and Benedict Cumberbatch. the latest in DK’s award-winning Big Ideas Simply Explained series, tackles this most “elementary” of subjects—the world of Sherlock Holmes, as told by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Packed with witty illustrations, clear graphics, and memorable quotes, TheSherlock Holmes Book is the ultimate guide to the world’s greatest detective and his assistant Dr. Watson, covering the whole canon, from the first novel A Study in Scarlet, through the masterpiece that is The Hound of the Baskervilles to the last story, The Adventure of Shoscombe Old Place.

The encyclopedic layout of the book places the stories in a wider context, while profiles on individual cases include at-a-glance flowcharts that reveal how Holmes reaches his conclusions through deductive reasoning. Biographies on key characters, from Holmes and Watson themselves to Inspector Lestrade, Mrs. Hudson, Mycroft Holmes, Irene Adler, and the detective’s archenemy, Professor Moriarty, provide handy reference for readers and an invaluable resource for fans of the films and TV series.

The only illustrated book on the market that analyzes the plots and detective techniques of the Sherlock Holmes novels and stories, The Sherlock Holmes Bookholds an unparalleled magnifying glass to the world of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s legendary detective.

Foreword writer

Leslie S. Klinger, a lawyer and long-time member of the Baker Street Irregulars, is considered one of the foremost Holmes authorities in the world. Once described as the “the world’s first consulting Sherlockian,” he has published countless articles on Sherlockiana and numerous books, including the Edgar®-winning The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes  and the multi-award-winning The SherlockHolmes Reference Library, a 10-volume work of Sherlockian scholarship. He has also taught classes on Holmes at UCLA and was the technical advisor for the recent Warner Bros. Sherlock Holmes films.

Above is the official publicity from the publisher. Let me add that Mr. Klinger was a real joy to interview. Listen for yourself by clicking on the grey podcast bar below.


Arthur Benjamin – The Magic of Math: Solving for X and Figuring out Why


Think of a number between 20 and 100. Then add the digits together. Now subtract the total from your original number. Finally, add the digits of the new number together.

Your answer is 9, right?  It’s Always 9!

America’s greatest “mathemagician” uses magic tricks and fun, everyday examples to teach math’s classic problems

The Magic of MathArthur Benjamin_edited-1America’s Best Math Whiz by Reader’s Digest, one of America’s 300 
Best Professors by Princeton Review and three-time TED talker with more than 11 million views.

“Mathematics is filled with magic like this, but most of us are never exposed to it in school,” 

–mathemagician Arthur Benjamin. 

Blending magic with lightning-fast mental math feats, mathemagician Arthur Benjamin has been dazzling, entertaining, and inspiring audiences of all ages with his mathematical magic shows for more than thirty years. In his new book, he draws on his sense of humor and a delightful assortment of tricks, mental shortcuts, and examples to explain the beauty, simplicity, and truly magical properties behind some of math’s most well-known formulas and properties. “While math is a seriously important subject, it doesn’t have to be taught in a serious and dry fashion,” he writes.

About the Author:  Arthur Benjamin holds a PhD from Johns Hopkins University and is the Smallwood Family Professor of Mathematics at Harvey Mudd College. Dr. Benjamin has received numerous awards for his writing and teaching, and served as editor of Math Horizons magazine for the Mathematical Association of America. He has given three TED talks, which have been viewed over 10 million times. Reader’s Digest calls him “America’s best math whiz.” Benjamin has appeared on numerous television programs, including TodayThe Colbert Report, and The Queen Latifah Show. He and his work have also been featured in the New York TimesLos Angeles TimesUSA TodayPeople Magazine, and Wired, among others.The author of Secrets of Mental Math, he lives in Claremont, California, with his wife and two daughters.