Subscribe to The Horn Book

About Jennifer M. Brabander

Jennifer M. Brabander is former senior editor of The Horn Book Magazine.

Review of Are You an Echo?: The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko

Are You an Echo?: The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko poems by Misuzu Kaneko; narrative by David Jacobson; illus. by Toshikado Hajiri; trans. from the Japanese by Sally Ito and Michiko Tsuboi Primary, Intermediate, Middle School    Chin Music Press    64 pp. 9/16    978-1-634905-962-6    $19.50 Part biography, part poetry collection, this book introduces Japanese children’s poet […]

Review of Sachiko: A Nagasaki Bomb Survivor’s Story

Sachiko: A Nagasaki Bomb Survivor’s Story by Caren Stelson Middle School, High School    Carolrhoda    144 pp. 10/16    978-1-4677-8903-5    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5124-1884-2    $9.99 The result of extensive interviews with Nagasaki atomic bomb survivor Sachiko Yasui, Stelson’s sensitively crafted account spans fifty years of Yasui’s life, starting in August 1945 when the bomb was dropped (she […]

Review of Cloudwish

Cloudwish by Fiona Wood High School    Poppy/Little, Brown    309 pp. 10/16    978-0-316-24212-7    $18.99    g e-book ed.  978-0-316-24211-0    $9.99 The Australian author’s third novel focuses on two minor characters from Wildlife (rev. 11/14). Vân U’ó’c Phan is a hardworking scholarship student, an artist, and the daughter of Vietnamese immigrants who expect her to become a doctor. […]

Review of When the Sea Turned to Silver

When the Sea Turned to Silver by Grace Lin; illus. by the author Intermediate, Middle School    Little, Brown    373 pp. 10/16    978-0-316-12592-5    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-31769-6    $9.99 In this companion to Lin’s Newbery Honor book Where the Mountain Meets the Moon (rev. 9/09) and Starry River of the Sky (rev. 11/12), young Pinmei goes in […]

Review of Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn

Goodbye Summer, 
Hello Autumn by Kenard Pak; illus. by the author Preschool    Holt    32 pp. 8/16    978-1-62779-415-2    $17.99    g “Hello, late summer morning,” says a young girl in a red scarf as she leaves her house on a double-page spread suffused in soft greens. She greets the trees, a variety of animals, flowers, thunder, and […]

Review of Dara Palmer’s Major Drama

Dara Palmer’s Major Drama by Emma Shevah; illus. by Helen Crawford-White Intermediate    Sourcebooks Jabberwocky    282 pp. 7/16    978-1-4926-3138-5    $16.99    g Though not a sequel to Shevah’s first novel, Dream On, Amber, this book is set at the same British elementary school and features another memorable narrator. Fifth grader Dara is genuinely gobsmacked when she isn’t […]

Review of Somewhere Among

Somewhere Among by Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu Intermediate    Dlouhy/Atheneum    441 pp. 4/16    978-1-4814-3786-8    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-3788-2    $10.99 Japanese fifth-grader Ema and her pregnant mother must move to the other side of Toyko to stay for several months with Obaasan and Jiichan, Papa’s parents: Mom is weak with debilitating morning sickness, and Papa works long hours. No […]

Review of A Tangle of Gold

A Tangle of Gold [Colors of Madeleine] by Jaclyn Moriarty Middle School, High School    Levine/Scholastic    470 pp. 4/16    978-0-545-39740-7    $17.99    g e-book ed. 978-0-545-77735-3    $17.99 Going into this final book in the trilogy set in two worlds (A Corner of White, rev. 5/13; The Cracks in the Kingdom, rev. 3/14), Moriarty left herself with an […]

Review of I Hear a Pickle (and Smell, See, Touch, 
and Taste It, Too!)

I Hear a Pickle (and Smell, See, Touch, 
and Taste It, Too!) by Rachel Isadora; illus. by the author Preschool   Paulsen/Penguin   32 pp. 1/16   978-0-399-16049-3   $16.99   g Starting with a clever, attention-grabbing title, Isadora’s book about the five senses is aimed perfectly at another sense — kids’ sense of humor. Separate sections, beginning with sound […]

This Is My Home, This Is My School

Using the same setting and characters from his semi-autobiographical Building Our House (a 2013 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winner), Jonathan Bean portrays a typical day in the life of a homeschooling family in This Is My Home, This Is My School. Mr. Versatile, Bean changes his illustration style from book to book and does so […]