Granny’s Day, as part of the USCB Lunch With Author series on Wednesday, December 12 at the Dataw Island Carolina Room, offers a wealth of opportunity for holiday shopping for those all-important children’s books.  Three children’s authors who have all made the New York Times best sellers list in children’s books and one award winning nature photographer will be featured on the day’s venue. Mary Alice Monroe has long been accepted as a NY Times best selling author for her environmental fiction for adults especially with her latest book, Swimming Lessons, which led to her first children’s book, Turtle Summer, A Journal for my Daughter.  Turtle Summer is a collection of photographs chronicling a summer at the beach. It is a work of love, written as a book of memories, dedicated to the author’s daughter. Each page is filled with photos of birds, flowers, shells and wonderful photographs recording the struggle of the Loggerhead as she digs her nest, deposits her eggs and returns to the sea. Barbara Berwerf, nature photographer extraordinaire, collaborated with Monroe on Turtle Summer to make it the outstanding book it is.  Bergwerf’s first children’s book, Carolina’s Story:  Sea Turtles Get Sick Too! was a finalist for the 2006 SIBA Best Children’s Book of the Year and was awarded the Florida Publisher’s Association’s Best Children’s Nonfiction Book for 2006.

Author and teacher Melinda Long has a passion for pirates that reaches back into her childhood that comes alive in her latest children’s books, How I Became a Pirate and Pirates Don’t Change Diapers, both of which are beautifully illustrated by David Shannon.  A Booklist revue of the books described them as “charmers with a lively, witty, first-person narrative, highly expressive characters, and farcical elements” that kids love.  One reader review at described the books as having “illustrations that are vibrant with great detailing for child to explore expressions and analyze actions.  Text is engaging and encourages child to predict and anticipate.”

Margie Willis Clary’s books reflect her 30-year experience as an elementary school teacher, and are colorful, beautifully illustrated learning tools.  A Gullah Alphabet which debuts this November, was inspired by Joe Harold Middleton, a well-known Gullah storyteller who made Gullah come alive to all who knew him and is illustrated by Dennis Brown.  The Beacons of South Carolina is a history of the old towers of the Palmetto state. This book includes details of where and how the lighthouses were built, individual characteristics and amazing facts about each light. Learn about the lightkeepers as well as some interesting legends passed down over time. The heritage of lighthouses lives on as relics of a maritime history that continues to hold a fascination for each new generation.

The Lunch With Author series is sponsored by the University of South Carolina Beaufort and reservations are necessary for the children’s author’s luncheon at Dataw Island Carolina Room on December 12, 2007.  The all-inclusive price of $40 includes lunch, talk and book signings and reservations may be made by calling 521-4147 or  Lunch is served at 12 noon.