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Remembering Kate And Kathy: Update

By May 3, 2018May 13th, 2021The Kerlan Blog

Remembering Kate and Kathy with Books

Librarians who attended the ALA Midwinter Conference may recall the big feelings that came up as the children’s librarians returned to Denver where two of our colleagues died in a drunk driving accident in a taxi on their way to the airport leaving the conference.  

As ALA returned to Denver for the first time in nine years, many children’s librarians were remembering Kate and Kathy with a deep sense of loss. I had been in touch with the Colorado family court who suggested donating books to the Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center ( as a way of honoring the memories of Kate and Kathy.  

Paula Singer, a long term publishing marketing consultant who lives in Denver was the leader of the the book drive effort. She walked the convention floor meeting with publishing representatives, marketing executives, and public relations staff and collecting donations. The generosity of the publishing community was almost overwhelming. Donations of galleys and books totaling over 900 volumes.

Meet Becky Miller Updike, Ph.D. / Executive Director and Jeremy Jones, Development and Communications Manager, accepted the donations for the Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center.


All of these shelves were empty before ALA.


Their mission:

“Every day for over thirty years, the Children’s Law Center has dedicated itself to advocating for Colorado’s abused, neglected and at-risk children. We are passionate legal and social work professionals with expertise in child welfare law. We have a strong reputation in the legal and child welfare communities and work tirelessly to establish caring, personal relationships with the kids we represent and fight for their best interests.

Every kid deserves an advocate — someone to walk with them through times of crisis and beyond. When it comes to kids, we never quit.

We transform the lives of abused, neglected and at-risk children through compassionate legal advocacy, clinical services, education and public policy reform.”

Paula Singer delivers the second load of books!

The publishers cherry-picked the books, and included 2018 award winners (for 2017 titles), as well as many advance galleys (for 2018 novels not yet published) and F&Gs (folded-and-gathered sheets for 2018 picture books not yet published).  And in quite a few cases multiple copies of books that garnered starred reviews and landed on year-end best-of lists.  

 For example… Holiday House, an independent publisher, donated over 50 copies and made sure to include Noodleheads See the Future by Tedd Arnold, Martha Hamilton and Mitch Weiss, illustrated by Tedd Arnold, a 2018 Theodore S. Geisel Honor, among other carefully selected titles.  Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, a division of the Hachette Book Group, donated over 50 titles, including I’m Just No Good at Rhyming and Other Nonsense for Mischievious Kids and Immature Grown-ups by Chris Harris, illustrated by Lane Smith, a NYT Bestseller featured on NPR’s Weekend Edition, and also a Publishers Weekly, Booklist, SLJ and Kirkus Best Children’s Book of 2017.  As well as Becoming Kareem: Growing Up On and Off the Court by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar & Raymond Obstfeld, a NYT Bestseller, 2017 NAACP Image Award, SLJ Best Children’s Book; and Laini Taylor’s Strange the Dreamer (a fantasy, for ages 14 & up), a 2018 Michael L. Printz Honor Book, an NPR Best Book and more.  

Penguin/Random House Children’s Books also donated much of their booth including multiple copies of The Stars Beneath Our Feet by David Barclay Moore (Knopf BFYR) winner of the 2018 Coretta Scott King John Steptoe Award for New Talent, six starred reviews, a movie adaptation in the works, a NYT Notable Book, a Time Magazine Top 10 Children’s Book of the Year, and a PW, Kirkus, Boston Globe Best of the Year; The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine by Mark Twain and Philip Stead w illustrations by Erin Stead (Doubleday), a never-before-published, previously unfinished Mark Twain children’s story, is a NYT Bestseller, an SLJ Best Book and rec’d five starred reviews as did Flying Lessons & Other Stories edited by Ellen Oh, (Crown) also a Kirkus and SLJ Best Book; and Let’s Clap, Jump, Sing & Shout; Dance, Spin & Turn It Out!collected by Patricia C. McKissack, illustrated by Brian Pinkney (Schwartz & Wade), a Kirkus and SLJ Best Book.  

Chronicle Books included Charlie & Mouse by Laurel Snyder, illustrated by Emily Hughes, the 2018 (Theodor Seuss) Geisel Award Winner, and also Book 2, Charlie & Mouse & Grumpy, along with Her Right Foot by Dave Eggers, art by Shawn Harris, which was named an ALA Notable Children’s Book 2018, a PW Best Book and received seven starred reviews.

Peachtree Publishers, Toon Books and Cinco Puntos Press included wonderful picture books in Spanish, and others as well.

The following publishers also contributed amazing books:

Thank you Holiday House Books for Young People, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, Penguin Random House, Chronicle Books, Peachtree Publishers, Toon Books, Cinco Puntos Press, ABRAMS Books, Albert Whitman & Company, Bloomsbury Publishing USA, Boyds Mills Press, Candlewick Press, Capstone, Charlesbridge Publishing, Disney Books, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Enchanted Lion Books, Fulcrum Publishing, Groundwood Books, HarperCollins Children’s Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Kids Can Press, KO Kids Books, Laurence King Publishing Ltd, Lerner Publishing Group, Macmillan Publishers, Nobrow, Owlkids, Publisher Spotlight, Readers To Eaters, Rodale Kids, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, Sourcebooks, Tanglewood Publishing, Workman Publishing and others for your generous contributions of almost 900 books and galleys for the children of Denver.




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