Kate DiCamillo’s “Flora & Ulysses,” a comic superhero tale featuring a deadly vacuum cleaner and a mighty squirrel, has won the John Newbery Medal for the year’s best work of children’s literature. Brian Floca won the Randolph Caldecott Medal for his illustrations in “Locomotive,” a story of the early years of train travel that Floca also wrote.
President Obama was on a mission Saturday. After just 20 minutes, the first family left a privately-owned Washington D.C. bookstore with a stash of nearly two dozen books. Among them, three were penned by Minnesota authors: Kate DiCamillo’s “Floyd and Ulysses,” Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild” and “Heart of a Samurai” by Margi Preus. Preus, who lives in Duluth, was at a remote cabin in northern Minnesota over the weekend. She found about the famous purchase in a text message from her son. “I completely missed it!” Preus said via Skype. “It just said ‘Obama bought your book,’ and I was like ‘What?!’”
The Children’s Theatre Company of Minneapolis opens its 46th season with the world premiere of “Mercy Watson to the Rescue!”, based on DiCamillo’s series about a toast-loving pig.