Shh! We have an author event!

george

The other night, Martha Parravano and I attended an “Ink and Drink” at Candlewick Press for visiting author Chris Haughton. Boston was a stopover for Haughton, an Irishman who lives in London, on his way to Mississippi to accept the Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Award for Shh! We Have a Plan, which received a […]

Review of The Penderwicks in Spring

birdsall_penderwicks in spring

The Penderwicks in Spring by Jeanne Birdsall Intermediate   Knopf   339 pp. 3/15   978-0-375-87077-4   $16.99 Library ed. 978-0-375-97077-1   $19.99   g e-book ed. 978-0-307-97459-4   $10.99 In this fourth Penderwicks book, time has passed and the family landscape has changed. Mr. Penderwick has married the lovely Iantha; Rosalind is away at college; and Skye is fending off best […]

The early bird

konnecke_you can do it, bert

After a long, hard winter, spring has finally returned. With it come our little feathered friends — and picture books about them. In Ole Könnecke’s humorous, cheering picture book You Can Do It, Bert!, a small red bird walks out to the end of a slender tree branch, trepidation written all over his face. “This […]

Dayenu, 2015!

Korngold_Seder in the Desert

Here’s an updated list of Passover books to nibble on when the matzo runs dry.   Preschool Two Shalom Sesame series entries, written by Tilda Balsley and Ellen Fischer and illustrated by Tom Leigh, follow Sesame Street characters in Israel as they learn about doing good deeds. In It’s a Mitzvah, Grover!, Grover and friends […]

Signs of springtime: bicycles

bikes

The snow is mostly gone, but here’s how we know it’s really springtime in Boston! While we’re waiting on those bicycles, here are some books about them. Reviews are from the Horn Book Guide Online.   Picture Books Davies, Matt Ben Rides On 32 pp. Roaring Brook/Porter 2013. ISBN 978-1-59643-794-4 Gr. K–3 Davies puts his […]

Dystopian YA lit panel at MIT

mit panel

Last night MIT hosted a Communications Forum, “Coming of Age in Dystopia: The Darkness of Young Adult Fiction.” The discussion was moderated by associate professor of literature Marah Gubar, with panelists Kenneth Kidd, children’s literature scholar and author (Freud in Oz) and literature department chair at the University of Florida; and YA fantasy author Kristin […]

Synthia Saint James at Simmons

stjamesart1

(Say *that* three times fast!) Next week, visual artist, author, and illustrator Dr. Synthia Saint James will be on the Simmons College campus as the Eileen Friars Leader-in-Residence. Right now some of her art is being installed along the hallway outside the Horn Book office. It’s lovely and thought-provoking — lucky us!

Whistling past the graveyard

flavor_graveyard

Another odd mini-trend to go with our rapture-girl books: The Boy in the Black Suit and The Dead I Know star teenage boys who work in funeral homes. The girl in Six Feet Over It lives in a graveyard (well, on the grounds of one) and works, after school, as its manager. Where’s Bod when […]

Walter Dean Myers’s legacy

Photo by Constance Myers

Librarian Sara Lissa Paulson was so inspired by the work of Walter Dean Myers that she wrote this new article for us. It’s both a tribute to the man and a kick in the pants for publishers to create books for all children by all stripes of new authors and illustrators — and to produce […]

Five questions for Neal Shusterman

Brendan and Neal Shusterman.

Neal Shusterman’s novel Challenger Deep (HarperTeen, 14 years and up) is a swirling, surrealistic look inside the mind of one teen, Caden, who is struggling with mental illness. Chapters narrated by Caden alternate between a bizarre shipboard setting and the world we know, all viewed through the teen’s sometimes impenetrable perspective. It’s a very personal […]