Visiting authors Laura Redniss and Lee Bacon spoke at the Upper and Middle School Assemblies on October 25 in conjunction with Browning’s annual Book Fair. Ms. Redniss’ book, Radioactive: A Tale of Love and Fallout, is Browning’s 2012 Common Book. Faculty, staff, Trustees and boys entering Forms II to VI participated in the experience of reading this book over the summer.
Following her introduction by Head of Upper School Jim Reynolds, Ms. Redniss, who wrote and illustrated Radioactive, described her process for integrating various separate sketches into one and showed spreads from her book. She said that while it is important to “write what you know,” you must also be open-minded to learning new information about the subject you love. She spoke of traveling to Paris to conduct research for Radioactive and visiting other far-flung places as well, even when they seemed a bit intimidating at first. Throughout her career, she has always hoped to remain creative and not stagnate, which accounts for her desire to write books rather than just concentrate on art alone. She talked about her first book, Century Girl, as well as the book about weather that she is currently working on. Citing the fact that Radioactive was sometimes depressing in content, she kiddingly told a friend that her next book would be about clouds and rainbows; and, so it seems, it is!
Concurrent with Ms. Redniss’ appearance, author Lee Bacon, introduced by Head Librarian Sarah Murphy, addressed Middle School boys in the Wilson Room. Mr. Bacon’s standing-room-only audience heard about his new book, Joshua Dread, concerning a young man whose parents are super villains.
Later in the morning, author-illustrator Dan Yaccarino met with Lower School boys in the library, where his audience was more than enthused to hear him speak about how he devises his book topics. All the Way to America, for instance, is based on his relatives who immigrated to America from Italy. Mr. Yaccarino also sketched for the boys and answered many, many questions from his curious audience. Click here to view photos.