Six Things About Jackson the Mole (and his mole friends) You Might Want to Know

Jackson pg 16-17Jackson picks out his clothes in No More Noisy Nights, written by Holly Niner, illustrated by Guy Wolek. Flashlight Press, 2017

#1  In No More Noisy Nights, Jackson lives underground. Moles make their tunnel systems in grasslands, cities, gardens, and sand dunes. These critters can make a home anywhere that has soil, and are found on every continent except Antarctica and South America.

#2 Moles are fossorial, or “diggers.” Their large paws have six fingers that are adapted for digging large networks of underground tunnels where they sleep and eat. This is how they avoid predators like owls, buzzards, cats, and dogs, who might want to eat them.

#3 In the book, Jackson wears glasses. Real moles don’t wear glasses, but they cannot see very well. Instead, they have a bare area on their noses with many little pimples to detect the movement and scent of animals around them. This helps them find food in dark tunnels, and stay safe.

#4 Jackson moves into his new home at the beginning of the story. When moles are about one month old, they leave their parents to make a home of their own. This may seem

very young, but moles usually live up to four years. This means our Jackson is a young adult.

relaxing mole

#5 Jackson moves in alone because moles are solitary creatures. Jackson is a friendly mole who gets along with his “noisy new friends,” but real moles are territorial, and almost never live together.

#6 In the story, Jackson eats cereal and toast, but in real life, moles eat earthworms and a variety of nuts. Yum!


Don’t forget to sneak a preview of No More Noisy Nights — now available for pre-order on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and at your local bookstore!

Librarians Line Up for Author Holly Niner at the ALA Conference


I loved my elementary school librarian and her wonderful quiet space filled with books waiting to be explored. She always knew just what to recommend and, when she saw that my appetite for books exceeded my weekly check-out limit, she suggested that a friend and I pick our books together and trade halfway through the week. For me, librarians know where to find all the answers and all the good books, so it was an honor to be invited to sign copies of my new book, The Day I Ran Away, and my upcoming No More Noisy Nights at the American Library Association Conference in Chicago, where so many lovers of books and knowledge gather in one place.

Although I’d seen the list of exhibitors online, I was awestruck by the number of booths, their size and scope, and the variety of publishers and industry-related products represented. As my husband and I wandered the halls prior to my signing, I pointed out publishers with whom I’d had contact over the years (too many rejection letters to count!) and looked for books I’d seen reviewed. I noticed some LONG lines of excited attendees waiting for an author’s signature, and then other authors with no line at all. I grew a bit apprehensive, as my signing time got closer. Would people want copies of my books?


We found the booth and were met by the wonderful staff of Independent Publishers Group (IPG), who distribute for Flashlight Press and hundreds of other independent publishers. The author who was signing before me did have a line, and in fact, ran overtime into my slot to give away as many books as possible. When the IPG staff member announced that they’d run out of her books, I piped up and suggested that folks wait, because I’d be giving away books in a few minutes too. Librarians love books, especially free ones! They asked what my books were, so we handed out two samples which they looked at and passed down the line to share.

By the time I began signing, I had my own line of excited librarians who were thrilled that they didn’t have to choose between The Day I Ran Away and No More Noisy Nights, but could have one of each. Although I had less than a minute with each librarian, it was exciting to speak with people from all over the US and Canada. With the ALA conference in Chicago this year, many attendees were from the Midwest, but folks also came from California, Texas, Utah, New York, North Carolina, Maine, Florida, Arkansas, and more that I cannot recall. There were public and private school librarians, university librarians, and public librarians. Many were gifting their free books to family or friends, and others were donating to their schools. I loved hearing their enthusiasm not only for my books, but for their work in sharing books with children.

Before I knew it, my time was up, and IPG cut me off! Several people then asked my husband if I could sign for them, so we moved to the corner of the booth and gave away a few more of the remaining books. In all, we gave away about 160 books!

One last highlight: the IPG booth was located near the Library of Congress booth, and it was heartening to see Carla Hayden, the new director, being treated like a rock star with interviews and people clamoring for a moment of her time! When my first picture book was released in 2004, my son was excited to point out that a copy would be forever kept in the Library of Congress. An amazing thing to think about!

0624171524_hdr-e1499257815209It was such an uplifting day! Thank you to IPG for hosting me at your booth, to Lauren at IPG for talking up No More Noisy Nights at the Morning Book Buzz, to Flashlight Press for creating great books, and to all the librarians who stood in line making me feel like a queen for an hour! Librarians know that reading is essential to understanding ourselves, our world, and our place in it. When we learn how to “find friends” in books, we are never alone. It is my hope that these wonderful librarians will create lifelong readers, and lifelong readers will help make this world a better place.

Blog post by Holly Niner, author of The Day I Ran Away and No More Noisy Nights.

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s National Flashlight Day and the Winter Solstice!

Illustration from 'Victricia Malicia', written by Carrie Clickard, illustrated by Mark Meyers
Illustration from ‘Victricia Malicia’, written by Carrie Clickard, illustrated by Mark Meyers

Get under your covers and read a book by flashlight on this longest night of the year. Choose one of Flashlight Press’s great books.

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s Mitten Tree Day!

Written by Simon Van Booy Illustrated by Wendy Edelson
Written by Simon Van Booy
Illustrated by Wendy Edelson

Can you keep track of your mittens? Pobble certainly can’t, but at least this lost mitten gives the forest animals something to talk about! Find Pobble’s lost mitten in Pobble’s Way here.

In the excitement, something fell from Pobble’s pocket and landed on the snowy leaves.

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s Duct Tape Day!

Written by Jason LeFebvre Illustrated by Zac Retz
Written by Jason LeFebvre
Illustrated by Zac Retz

Get sticky with Matty as he has an adventure in Too Much Glue. Click here for a sneak peek of the book.

Glue raindrops, not puddles!

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s Marooned Without a Compass Day!

Written by Carrie Clickard Illustrated by Mark Meyers
Written by Carrie Clickard
Illustrated by Mark Meyers

Ahoy there pirates! Hope you’re not marooned without a compass today. If you are, entertain yourself by reading about another pirate’s adventures in Victricia Malicia. Find the full pdf here.

“Let’s ground her awhile-” “For a week-” “Maybe two-” “On a boring old island, with nothing to do.”

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s Sandwich Day!

Written by Debbie HermanIllustrated by Sheila Bailey
Written by Debbie Herman
Illustrated by Sheila Bailey

Prepare a creative lunch this Sandwich Day with some ideas from Carla’s Sandwich. Enjoy the full pdf here.

Carla brought weird sandwiches to school.

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s National Cat Day!

Written by Thad Krasnesky Illustrated by David Parkins
Written by Thad Krasnesky
Illustrated by David Parkins

Join the family and ALL their cats this National Cat Day in That Cat Can’t Stay. Read the full pdf here.

When Mom brought home a stray one day, Dad said, “That creature cannot stay.”

What wacky holiday is it today? It’s National Grouch Day!

Written and illustrated by Courtney Pippin-Mathur
Written and illustrated by Courtney Pippin-Mathur

What better way to celebrate than reading Maya Was Grumpy. Grumps Unite! Enjoy the full pdf here.

“That’s just silly,” Maya grumbled.

Play the Flashlight Press Six-Word Challenge!

oocimageblogCome one, come all! Enter in the Flashlight Press Six-Word Challenge.

The rules are simple:

1. Create a clever six-word summary of one our published or upcoming books. Here are some of our examples:

Perfect sandcastle available. Dragons may apply.

Mouse house… wing warmer… pink mitten.

Cat. Cat. Cat. Cat. Cat. Dog.

Pterodactyl comes to school. Class dismissed.

2. Post it on Facebook/Twitter and tag Flashlight Press.

3. Share this post with your friends!

We will re-post some of our favorite entries on Facebook/Twitter, and in a few weeks, announce the winners on our blog.

This six-word challenge is based on the Smith Magazine Six-Word Memoir challenge.

Another interesting article you might enjoy.

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