Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summary of reviews and awards

I figured it's time for a little recap of some notable reviews and awards for my debut effort - Swords: An Artist's Devotion

Here is a nice little summation from the Candlewick Press website:

Swords Swords

author/illustrator: Ben Boos


An Artist's Devotion

awards
1. Cybils Awards Shortlist
2. Children's Choice Book Award Finalist
3. ALA (American Library Association) Quick Picks for Reluctant YA Readers
4. Parents' Choice Awards Recommended
reviews
Kirkus Reviews
08/01/2008
"Every nick, notch, decorative motif and gleaming highlight rendered in lovingly realistic detail."
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Journal Inquirer
10/13/2008
"Exquisitely detailed and realistic illustrations."
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Raleigh News and Observer
12/07/2008
Raleigh, NC circ=205,000
"Even if swords aren't your thing, they'll wow you in this book."
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School Library Journal
10/10/2008
"Boos's treatment of his subject is reverential and his artwork is outstanding...an incredible variety of styles, from hilts to blades to the intricate metalwork that makes each sword not just a weapon but also a work of art. It's easy to get caught up in his enthusiasm, and the right reader will spend hours poring over every loving detail. Give this to fans of history, art, or swordplay fantasies."
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New York Times Book Review, The
11/09/2008
"Exemplars of the smithy's art are depicted close to life-size, from blades hardy folk used against 'bandits and beasts' to imperial weapons thought to have had latent spirits of their own."
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VOYA
04/01/2009
"This beautifully illustrated book gives concise descriptions on the history of swords, including usage and cultures...of special interest are the artistic elements of each culture's swords...detailed drawings for many of the swords show the inner workings of sword anatomy, one of the book's highlights."
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Library Media Connection
02/01/2009
circ=18,000
"Laden with lavish visuals and minimal text. This volume is not an in-depth study of the history of swords or warfare, but a visual orgy of beautiful well-wrought swords used throughout the ages by various cultures."
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Scripps-Howard
12/22/2008
Syndicated Column
"A lavishly illustrated homage"
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Newton's Book News
09/18/2008
TK
"Illustrates the most amazing and historical swords giving you a glimpse of history through the intricate and ornate carvings and the huge variety of sword shapes throughout the centuries."
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Newton's Book News
12/01/2008
TK
"Oversized book filled with a most unique way to learn history - through the many varied types of swords used throughout the ages. Mr. Boos has rendered the most remarkable assortment of swords which depict many different eras."
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PlanetEsme (blog)
12/29/2008
Blog
"The detail of the artwork is so textural and vivid, you can almost hear the metallic ringing of a blade pull out of the sheath, and almost feel the carefully adorned indentations, cool beneath your fingers. One of the most beautiful nonfiction books of the year."
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BookKids Blog
08/27/2008
BookKids Blog
"In what is sure to be a big hit, Swords: An Artist's Devotion presents a loving ode to the history of swordscraft and swordsmanship. The illustrations and diagrams are gorgeous, the tiny tidbits of trivia and obscure vocabulary lessons are detailed enough for the most avid fan, and the history is fascinating enough for a layman. Dipping into sword-wielding traditions through history, from those of the ninja and samurai to those of war maidens and knights of errantry, Ben Boos has created a gloriously crafted wonderland for sword enthusiasts and novices alike."
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Science Fiction and Fantasy Advance Magazine Supplement
08/01/2008
Science Fiction and Fantasy Advance Magazine Supplement
"A true devotee of swords, Ben Boos passionately brings the history of this noble weapon and its skillful masters to life, offering lavish background details and exquisite, full-color spreads illuminating swords in all their shining glory."
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Diii.net (Diablo 3 website)
08/15/2008
Diii.net (Diablo 3 website)
"Calling the book lavishly illustrated doesn't do it justice...every page in the book is a visual delight...even the pages that serve up historical information are eye candy, while the pages of pure art are poster-worthy."
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Guyslitwire Blog
09/21/2008
Guyslitwire
"The dozens of almost absurdly detailed sword illustrations (along with tons of sketches) are the star of the show here, but Boos adds a bunch of cool historical details, too."
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Chivalry Today
11/30/2008
Chivalry Today
Podcast featuring interview on Chivalry Today (episode #26), www.chivalrytoday.com
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Curled Up With A Good Kids' Book (blog)
05/01/2009
blog
Boos has created a stunning book visually showcasing the history and importance of one of the oldest and most respected weapons in the world.
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Carol's Corner (blog)
12/14/2008
blog
"Not in any way, shape, or form violent...Some of the most incredibly detailed artwork I have ever seen in a children's book...I could see using this book to engage kids in books- it sure caught my boys' attention last night!"
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Aptos Times
01/15/2009
(CIRC. 15,000)
"A celebration of swords and swordsmen, this fascinating volume spans the ages."
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Boys Read
04/09/2009
blog
"Looking for an awesome nonfiction book for a reluctant reader?...This is the coolest nonfiction book I've ever read. Swords is nothing less than a work of art."

6 comments:

Shadow said...

Hello Mr. Boos! I received your book "Swords: An Artist's Devotion" as a present a couple years ago and I must say I love the drawings and sketches you've done, particularly of the eastern cultures of Korea and Japan.

Although I understand that you are more of a sword enthusiast than myself (I'm a martial arts enthusiast, though the sword has always been my preferred weapon for armed combat in martial arts), I was hoping to ask you, if you've ever heard of a style or fighter/warrior ever wielding two jian simultaneously?

I know you must be a busy person, but I hope to hear from your perspective!

Shadow said...

Haha, apologies, never used Blogger before. The real names I use for my e-mails are indeed false, I don't particularly have a fanaticism for fantasy assassins or anything.

Ben Boos said...

I feel like I've seen two jian in action before - but I might be mixing up the common sight of two sabers... Hmmmm. I am going to keep my eye open for this. If I find something, I'll let you know! :)

Thanks!

Ben

Shadow said...

Indeed, I've seen dual saber used in Shaolin's style of White Dragon Kung Fu among others, but never a dual jian.

Thanks for your response!

Ben Boos said...

Wushu style?
Double Jian:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYPXqnKqeMM&feature=related

Discussion of double Jian use:
http://www.swordforum.com/forums/showthread.php?p=197163

Double Jian - two in one scabbard:

http://www.walton-antiques.com/christopher_129.htm

-Ben

Shadow said...

Oh wow, that was fast. I guess, I should have delved a little deeper into history. I just assumed it was a lost form and tried to hunt down modern applications.

This definitely helped a lot, thank you very much Mr. Boos!