Picture book surrealism

black dog

Horn Book Magazine reviewer Thom Barthelmess says, of 2013 Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book Black Dog by Levi Pinfold (Candlewick): “The traditional feel of the cumulative telling and the art’s surreal precision and fanciful decay combine to offer a curious metaphorical consideration of what it means to be afraid and what it takes to conquer […]

Reviewer gals done good


We ♥ our reviewers! And here’s what some of them have been up to. Long-time Horn Book Guide reviewer Nell Beram is coauthor (with Carolyn Boriss-Krimsky) of Yoko Ono: Collector of Skies (Amulet/Abrams, January 2013). No Yoko-bashing here; the authors paint an engaging (and sympathetic) portrait of the rock-’n’-roll wife as a groundbreaking avant-garde artist […]

Jon Klassen on misremembering: has this ever happened to you?


In his 2012 Boston Globe–Horn Book Picture Book Award speech, illustrator Jon Klassen talks about having a false memory of a scene from the movie There Will Be Blood. Meanwhile, Horn Book Magazine reader Martha Bennett Stiles had the same experience with the book Mountolive. Memory is a funny thing. Has that ever happened to […]

Yarn bomb!

Yarn bomb bench at the Arnold Arboretum.

While walking in the Arnold Arboretum in Jamaica Plain this weekend, I finally witnessed what Mac Barnett was talking about in his 2012 Boston Globe-Horn Book Picture Book Award speech for Extra Yarn. (BTW, the 2013 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards announcement is coming up!) And here’s a view of the city of Boston from Peters […]

Review of Water in the Park

water in the park

Water in the Park: A Book About Water & 
the Times of the Day by Emily Jenkins; 
illus. by Stephanie Graegin Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp. 5/13    978-0-375-87002-6    $16.99 Library ed.  978-0-375-97002-3    $19.99 On a warm day, just before six a.m., a city park starts to stir: turtles laze on rocks by the pond, […]

Get moving

Becoming Babe Ruth

Baseball and basketball, auto racing and boat-jumping. The following picture book biographies of historical sports stars will inspire youngsters to pick up a bat, go for the dunk, or just zoom around for a while. Is there a bigger baseball fan in the children’s book world than Matt Tavares? His sixth title on the sport, […]

Five questions for Jeanne Birdsall


The first book about the feisty Penderwick sisters, The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy, won the National Book Award in 2005. Since then, the family has expanded in soul-satisfying ways — as has fans’ love for the series. The third volume, The Penderwicks at Point Mouette, […]

Oz, the Great and Powerful, or, Why it pays to have low expectations

Oz, the Great and Powerful

Or, Maybe I’ve Gotten Less Discerning Since Having a Second Kid. I recently saw Oz, the Great and Powerful in IMAX 3-D. Having read mostly 2-2.5-star reviews, I wasn’t expecting much. But when their grandparents are willing and available to babysit your two small children (“Go, see a movie!”), it doesn’t have to be Citizen […]

E. L. Konigsburg (1930-2013)


We were very sad to hear about the recent passing of E. L. Konigsburg. Konigsburg was the author of Newbery Award-winners From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler and The View from Saturday, along with Jennifer, Hecate, MacBeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth, which won a Newbery Honor the same year as Mixed-Up Files won […]

Love, exciting and new

Eleanor & Park

Spring is here, and love is in the air (be sure to catch What Makes a Good YA Love Story? by Katrina Hedeen and Rachel L. Smith in the upcoming May/June 2013 issue of the Horn Book Magazine). Here are four more books that will make teens contemplate love in all its forms. The main […]