That's right. On a warm night in Baltimore, thanks to the offices of our warm friend Eerily Similar Paula, Adam Gidwitz joined us for dinner. Did we take advantage of our New York Times bestselling friend, the author of A Tale Dark and Grimm and In a Glass Grimmly? Hell yes we did. Ezra got him to check his homework, Zoë interviewed him on her iPad, Milo critiqued his narrative style, ESP got him to agree to an interview for our library blog, and I took a banner picture.
In fairness, we also fed him. The amazing amazing Louisiana-style place around the corner from us, Tooloulou, made us pizzas and Old Bay wings and enough greens that I have leftovers for lunch and probably dinner too. Everybody go to Tooloulou, y'all, they really bent over backwards for us. And they have a new baby, a baby who will no doubt grow up to love gory fairy tales.
I thought it would be silly to have Adam reading his own book in this picture, so I grabbed my copy of invisible I, a book by the YA author Melissa Kantor, whose Darlings books are so... darling! Melissa also happens to teach at the same school Adam was working at while he wrote A Tale Dark and Grimm, and she was one of my husband's housemates in Zimbabwe in 1994. Melissa may well be the pivot upon which the earth turns - that is a lot of connections.
At this point, nobody needs me to tell them to read A Tale Dark and Grimm and its sequel, In a Glass Grimmly. But I have a strong feeling about these books and about this author, and it is this: I suspect that we'll be seeing a lot of books taking up Adam's gore-encrusted wand and offering decapitation to minors.
And I hope that the people writing those books will not miss the fact that the Grimm books succeed not only because they are violent and fun, but because every sentence of Adam Gidwitz's prose is laced with respect for his readers. He's one of those authors who has been a teacher, and people who have spent a lot of time talking to kids know that kids want books that push it. Kids don't mind having to figure things out for themselves a little. Kids get tone. Kids get most jokes. Respect the kids.
Epic thanks to PG for getting us all together. It was a lovely evening.