Fantasy and Science Fiction – Cybils 2012

Welcome to the middle of our last trilogy of posts about the panelists and judges for the 2012 Cybils.

Beginning last week and continuing through September 30, 2012 we are blogging about each of the Cybils categories as we count down toward our opening day for 2012 nominations: October 1, 2012

We are working our way backwards through the alphabet, so today’s featured Category is Fantasy and Science Fiction and our chair Sheila Ruth … who I have to tell you is the linchpin of making all of the infrastructure run without a hitch! Plus, as you can see when you keep reading, she chairs TWO complete panels!

Have you been noticing how the date and the time of the post match? Today’s post dated 9/27 went live at 9/27  … seems like an appropriate sci-fi kind of thing, don’t you think?

Category: Fantasy and Science Fiction, Teen and Younger Readers
Category Chair: Sheila Ruth
Sheila blogs at  Wands and Worlds and tweets@SheilaRuth

Empress of YA fantasy and science fiction.

Sheila Ruth is happy to have found her tribe in the Cybils. Where else can she geek out about books with other people who get it? She has been with the Cybils since the beginning, and has worn several different hats over the years: Category Chair, Publisher Liaison, and creator/developer of the Cybils database, but her favorite part is reading and debating the books as a panelist.

Round 1 Panelists – Middle Grade

Anamaria Anderson, parent, teacher
Books Together and @bookstogether
Hello and welcome to books together!  This website is the work of Anamaria Anderson (that’s me), and I’ve been writing about children’s books here since 2007. I live in Arlington, VA with my husband, son Leo (age 12), and daughter Milly (age 8).

Sherry Early, parent, teacher, author
Semicolon and @semicolonblog
Sherry Early is the author and instigator of Semicolon, a blog about kids and books and homeschooling and communities and sometimes movies and politics and fun links and whatever else I want to write about on any particular day. Semicolon is a work of love and joy, and when it ceases to be both fun and useful to me and to other people, I’ll quit writing. I am an evangelical Christian and completely unapologetic about it.

Sondra Eklund, librarian, author
Sonderbooks  and  @Sonderbooks
I’m a book lover, a librarian, and a writer. I began Sonderbooks as an e-newsletter in 2000 to tell my friends about all the wonderful books I was reading now that I worked at a library. Since then, it has evolved into a website and a blog, with the purpose of connecting people and books. There’s an emphasis on books for children and young adults, but you’ll find all types of books here, for all ages. Every book reviewed is recommended — I don’t review books I don’t like.

Melissa Fox, parent
Book Nut and@book_nut
Voracious reader of Middle Grade and YA fiction/science fiction-fantasy. Sometime reader of adult books and non-fiction, with a soft spot for food and travel. Interested in books with people of color. Has never enjoyed a contemporary crime/thriller novel. Reviews everything that she picks up: good, the bad and the ugly. Very picky about accepting review copies; as a mother of four, there’s only so many reading hours in a day.

Jessalynn Gale, librarian
Garish & Tweed and @jessmonster
Children’s librarian, book nerd, baking addict. I am a two-headed being.  Some days I am the Jessmonster, or simply the Monster.  I wield sarcasm like a sharp kitchen knife.  Other days I am Library Girl, benevolently bestowing recommendations on the world.

Charlotte Taylor, librarian, author
Charlotte’s Library and @charlotteslib
My name really is Charlotte.  I’m an archaeologist by day, president of the Friends of a small New England library by night, and an avid reader of fantasy and science fiction (and 20th-century British girls’ books, but I don’t blog about them much).  I’m the mother of two boys (9 and 12), the wife of an Irish piper/ethnomusicologist, and co-owner of an old house that we thought would take just a few months to renovate ha ha ha. Since starting my blog in 2007, I’ve narrowed the focus of my blog from children’s books in general to fantasy and science fiction books for kids and teenagers.  That being said, I will occasionally review books that aren’t sci fi/fantasy if they catch my fancy, so you’ll find here a smattering of children’s non-fiction and picture books (especially those that have fantasy elements).   I’m particularly interested in time travel books, and multicultural sci fi/fantasy for kids, and you can find lists of all my reviews in those sub-genres up at the top of the blog. 

Cheryl Vanatti, parent, librarian, teacher
Reading Rumpus  and @Tasses
I have an M.S. in Reading Education and a B.S. in Elementary Education, but I have always had an all-encompassing love of books. I hold teaching certifications in reading, English, media specialist, elementary as well as an ESOL endorsement. I am currently a middle school reading & literacy specialist, working toward a doctorate in curriculum & instruction.  I live in Florida with my husband. He is a commercial pilot and loves to make artistic things. We have been together since we met in high school band, which is way too long ago to disclose. Our children are now grown. Our oldest son is married to a wonderful gal, lives in Iowa, and works as a sound engineer at a college where he is studying to become a chef. Our daughter is an emergency veterinarian with a herd of grand”babies”. Our youngest son has a degree in anthropology and lives with us while he contemplates the great unknown. I am proud to say that they are all readers.

Round 2 Judges – Middle Grade

Hayley Beale, librarian
From the Children’s Room
Came up empty!

Kristen Evey, author
Bookends (& Beginnings) and @kristenevey
Kristen Evey is addicted to the world of books and the richness they can add to life. While she frequently reads across many genres, her favorites include young adult and middle grade fiction. Right now she works at the local bookstore, where she finds at least two or three new books to read everyday. Now if she could only find the time to read those books…

Rosemary Kiladitis, mom, wannabe librarian
More Coffee, Please and @roesolo
SuperMom, Knitter, Book Lover. Occasional Zombie Hunter. Podcast fanatic. Horror/Sci-Fi Nerd Extraordinaire.

Gina Ruiz, parent, author
AmoXcalli and @ginaruiz
Gina Ruiz reads a lot, blogs a lot (books, cooking, online journal, poetry), fiddles around in virtual worlds and is big on promoting multicultural literature. Her idea of a grand vacation is going to Book Expo America or visiting dusty bookshops in any city. She speaks hardcover, paperback, Kindle, Nook and Spanglish. Most recently spotted at the zoo with her partners in bookish madness – Jasmine and Aiden (they’re gonna be writers!). Sometimes she has to wrestle them for the books she wants to review. Gina started AmoXcalli several years ago and can usually be found with her nose in a book or her Kindle if she’s on the road (don’t worry she’s not the one driving!).

Amelia Yunker, librarian
Challenging the Bookworm
I have recently accepted a position as the Head of Children’s and Young Adult Services. Previously, I simultaneously worked two part-time jobs as a librarian at two different public libraries (yes, two jobs, two different libraries, at the same time). I’ve previously planned weekly story times and special programming and conducted reader’s advisory. I’m excited to see what this new career move brings. I graduated in May 2009 with my MLIS, making me a full-fledged certified librarian with a masters degree in library and information science with a specialization in public services for children and young adults.

Round 1 Panelists – Teen

Kim Baccellia, parent, author
YA Books Central  and @ixtumea
Author, YA Books Central reviewer, 2012 Cybils panelist, and homeschooling mom. PR and Online Marketing Associate for Month9books

Flannery Carlos, reader
The Readventurer and @TheReadventurer
I am a reader. A voracious, severely addicted reader. I’ve spent twenty years  of my life in school and I’ve read over 1,000 books.  When I’m not  reading, you can find me out and about in Seattle, prowling bookshops  and libraries, hanging out with my friends and family, and spending as  much time as possible outside. My reading taste covers most genres but I’d estimate that about 90% of what I read is science fiction, fantasy, young adult, contemporary or paranormal romance, horror,  urban fantasy, or literary fiction. The rest is mostly comprised of humor, memoir, and historical nonfiction. At any given time, I am usually in the process of reading a book from the library, a book on my Kindle, and listening to an audiobook.

Aurora Celeste, reader
YASFF Blog and @yasffblog
Aurora Celeste is a costume dabbler with more than 10 years’ experience who shares her costuming knowledge on her blog at Her costuming interests are all over, but her passion is reproducing costumes, mostly sci-fi and fantasy movies and tv shows, anime and manga, and Joseph Michael Linsner’s Dawn. In 2009 she received degrees in Theater & Film and History from the University of Kansas, concentrating in Theater and Film Costuming and the History of Clothing. She gives panels and enters masquerades all over the country, has won Best in Show at CostumeCon 24, and is currently serving as Recording Secretary of the International Costumers’ Guild Board of Directors. When she’s not costuming at a convention she’s often behind the scenes running them. She has served as staff and panelist on many conventions across the continent including CostumeCon, Arisia, AnimeNorth, and Archon and a con chair at Naka-Kon Anime Convention in Kansas City. In her spare time she reads a lot of Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy, and maintains a review blog at

Tanita Davis, author
Finding Wonderland
Tanita prefers to sit in the corner of a coffee shop, her hot chocolate getting cold, listening to the world around her. Born in the well-known California “City by the Bay,” Tanita was a chatty youngest child — the last in a line of girls all born eighteen months apart. In defense of her sanity, Tanita’s mother begged her to “just write it down” when Tanita wanted to share another endless singing, dancing, or storytelling performance. This seemed a perfectly good idea to Tanita, and thus was born a talent for mimicry and a skill for listening to the world around her, and the impetus to get it down on paper.

Karen Jensen, parent, librarian
Teen Librarian’s Toolbox  and @tlt16
I have been a Young Adult/Teen Services Librarian for 19 years (let’s say I started at the age of 10, shall we?) and love working with teens, teen fiction, and graphic design (free RA posters here). I read, I don’t cook. I have an undergraduate degree from Mount Vernon Nazarene University in Youth Ministry with a minor in Psychology and I received my MLS from Kent State University in 2002 (This is also me). I have been a reviewer for VOYA magazine since 2001. For the past 2 years I have been a part of the Wild Child Conference board.  I believe in the power of the 40 Developmental Assets and that the right book in the right hand can make all the difference.  TLT is my attempt to share my passion with my fellow teen services librarians – and you.

Sheila Ruth, parent
Wands and Worlds and @sheilaruth
I live my life at the intersection of story, art, and technology. I’m a publisher, web developer, and publishing technology expert. My publishing company, Imaginator Press, publishes children’s and young adult fantasy & science fiction (and one martial arts book). I’m also a children’s/YA book blogger, and one of the organizers of the Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers Literary Awards, better known as the Cybils. I am also active in community theatre, sometimes doing volunteer work as a lighting operator or stage manager. I have studied computing, graphic arts, and photography, and have a B.S. degree in Liberal Arts and Technology: Computers.

Hallie Tibbets, teacher
Undusty New Books and @hallietibbetts
I’m Hallie. I’m a former teacher, and at present, a literature event planner, among other things, on top of the day job. If you want to find out more about the events, please visit the Narrate Conferences site. This blog doesn’t represent Narrate Conferences, its opinions, and other sorts of things you might see in a disclaimer, and if you’re interested in Narrate, I suggest going through that site and contacts instead of this blog. This is where I review books, mostly informally, with a focus on young adult literature, and on occasion, I review  middle grade, picture books, and (much less frequently) books marketed for adults I usually review books that I can recommend. That might be because I really genuinely enjoyed a book, because I enjoyed a particular aspect of a book, because I think a book is important, or because–even if the book isn’t a good fit for me or isn’t to my taste–I think a book will resonate with people who read my reviews.

Round 2 Judges – Teen

Emma Carbone, librarian
Miss Print  and @miss_print
My name is Emma Carbone, not Miss Print. I’ve been an avid reader for almost as long as I can remember. I’m a college graduate (summa cum laude from Pace University) with a BA in English Language and Literature and minors in Art History, New York City Studies, and Women’s and Gender Studies. I am a feminist even if I might not be much of an activist. A lot of the posts on this site are written through a feminist lens. I am also a recent graduate from Pratt SILS where I earned my Master’s of Science in Library and Information Science (with distinction).

Zac Harding, librarian
My Best Friends Are Books and @zackids
I’m a Children’s Librarian in Christchurch, New Zealand and I love Children’s and Young Adult literature.  I blog regularly on the Christchurch City Libraries blog and the Christchurch Kids Blog (aimed at children 8-12 years old).  On this blog I share books that I’m reading, books I want to read, and any other book related news.

Kerry Millar, teacher, librarian
Shelf Elf  and @Shelf_Elf
harpist, pastry chef, children’s bookseller. Present: middle school teacher librarian (Year 6 done… Year 7 begun!). Future: cookie artist, groovy chanson songstress, nature photo-journalist…or middle school teacher

Tasha Saecker, librarian
Waking Brain Cells and @tashrow
My name is Tasha Saecker, and I am the Assistant Director of the Appleton Public Library in Appleton, WI. I started my library career over 20 years ago as a children’s librarian, and continue to be connected to books for children and young adults. I hope in Waking Brain Cells, you find a warm, friendly place where books for children and teens are celebrated. I also maintain another blog, Sites and Soundbytes that is about technology, social media and libraries. I only review titles that I really enjoy,

Nicole Signoretta, reader
booked up
this is how i book my time between books.

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