3 years & up
Kelly Carey & Qing Zhuang
Blueberry season, amirite? One of the best fruits, and I’ve been diligently picking from our community garden bushes for snacking, baking, and freezing for baking during the winter. Just like the protagonist in our story, How Long is Forever? I too get very impatient when waiting for something to finish baking. While Mason’s Nana is baking the first blueberry pie of the season, he’s having trouble waiting. Mason and his Grandpa then have a conversation about what “forever” actually means. But the pressing matter is…will Mason be waiting forever for this pie??
I like this book because of the way is frames the philosophical debate of “forever” and also teaches kids a little bit about framing lengths of time internally. In the classroom, we used to use techniques like a melting ice cream cone, a movie, or a parent going out of town on a business trip to explain different lengths of time; examples that were meaningful to their own lives. When you can’t tell time (or when you’re excited about something) time is just kind of an abstract concept that other people talk about. How Long is Forever? takes not only a humorous distraction approach, asking Mason to describe what “forever” means to him, but also helps to answer this question for young readers. While I prefer a coffee cake over a pie, I’m still likely to be as impatient as Mason while waiting for it to bake! If only I had a lovely farm to wander around while waiting.
This book was kindly sent by Charlesbridge, but all opinions are my own.
Kelly is a graduate of The Institute of Children’s Literature and an active member of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She belongs to The Writers’ Loft in Sherborn, MA and is the proud co-founder of the blog 24 Carrot Writing (www.24carrotwriting.com). She has participated in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), Storystorm, ReFoReMo (Reading for Research Month) and Julie Hedlund’s 12×12 Picture Book Challenge. She has attended the New England SCBWI Spring Conference on many occasions, participated in SCBWI’s Agent/Editor Day, SCBWI Encore, and the Whispering Pines Writing Retreat. Kelly’s received the Higher Goals Award from the Evangelical Press Association in 2008, 2009 and 2015.
From Qing’s website: “Hi! My name is Qing Zhuang (“ching juong”). I am an artist living in New York City.
I was born in a coastal province in China, where my mom lovingly nicknamed me “Strange Sea Creature” as a child. I moved to NYC when I was 7 years old.
I currently specialize in watercolor illustration but experiment artistically whenever I can. I like to sprinkle heart and humor in everything I do.
Fun fact: When I was in 6th grade, I won the citywide children’s version of the Ezra Jack Keats Award and got mentioned in the New York Times! Yet they made fun of my name in the article so naturally, I resolved to become a professional illustrator of picture books with my Q without a U Chinese name. I am so grateful to be able to work towards this childhood promise every day!
I earned a B.F.A. in Illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore and a Master of Art in Teaching from School of Visual Arts, New York. My work has been recognized by Society of Illustrators NY and Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators NJ.”