Katie Bircher

About Katie Bircher

Katie Bircher, assistant editor at The Horn Book, Inc., is a former bookseller and holds an MA in children's literature from Simmons College.

Happy birthday, Harry!

harry birthday cake

Happy birthday to one of kidlit’s most beloved and backlashed big-name characters, Harry Potter! (He’d be thirty-four this year. Holy hippogriff.) The Horn Book has had a lot to say — good, bad, and damn, these books are long — about The Boy Who Lived over the years. Here’s a roundup of reviews, articles, and […]

Harry Potter read-alikes

duane_so you want to be a wizard

These titles — all recommended by The Horn Book Magazine — offer a mix of magic, adventure, humor, and suspense that will enchant Harry Potter fans. So You Want to Be a Wizard by Diane Duane [Young Wizards series] (Delacorte, 1983; reissued by Harcourt, 2003) A splendid, unusual fantasy tells of the efforts of two […]

Reading about WWI

freedman_war to end all wars

One hundred years ago today, the first shots of World War I were fired. These books about the WWI era — fiction and nonfiction for a range of ages — are all recommended by The Horn Book Magazine and The Horn Book Guide. Picture Books The text of Timothy Decker’s unusual picture book The Letter […]

Week in Review, July 21st-25th

Week in Review

This week on hbook.com… Summer 2014 Board Book Roundup Let’s Get Lost author Adi Alsaid Talks with Roger Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: Pom and Pim by Lena Landström; illus. by 
Olof Landström; trans. from 
the Swedish by Julia Marshall Fiction: Like No Other by Una LaMarche Nonfiction: Little Roja Riding Hood by Susan Middleton […]

Shout Science! app review

shout science menu

Shout Science! (Scott Dubois, 2013) is a comic-style nonfiction app that tells three stories of figures from the European Scientific Revolution. The first biography follows Maria Sybilla Merian (1647-1717), a watercolor painter and insect collector in Frankfurt, Germany. Merian observed the life cycle of butterflies, including metamorphosis, and documented it in two books she wrote […]

And straight on ’til morning

finding neverland musical

The other day my friend’s four-year-old daughter asked me, “Guess what I wished for?” I was a little nervous about this — after all, isn’t it bad luck to tell others your wish? — but she insisted. “A puppy? A pony? A baby elephant?” “No, it wasn’t an animal at all. It was the second […]

Kidlit crafts

epbot wand display

Lately I’ve been drooling over the craft tutorials at EPBOT: Geekery, Girliness, and Goofing Off, another blog written by Jen Yates, mastermind behind the genius and hilarious Cake Wrecks. (If you’re not familiar with Cake Wrecks, start with “Grammar geeks, UNITE!” and gorgeous children’s lit cakes.) EPBOT is pretty much what it sounds like from […]

Links we love

madeline cake

We’re on Twitter — follow us @HornBook (and Roger Sutton at @RogerReads), then come say hi! This week we shared these kidlit-related links: Beautiful Propaganda Posters Honor the Districts in The Hunger Games (Design Taxi) Classic Kids’ Books Cakes (Cake Wrecks) Ten Things that Make an Editor Stop Reading Your Manuscript (Elizabeth Law Reads blog) […]

Week in Review, July 14th-18th

Week in Review

This week on hbook.com… Classic HB from our archives: “The Flat-Heeled Muse” by Lloyd Alexander (April 1965 issue) Read about Mandiba for International Nelson Mandela Day Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: The Midnight Library by Kazuno Kohara; illus. by the author Fiction: Skies like These by Tess Hilmo Nonfiction: The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and […]

The Power of Poison app review

power of poison menu

Apps make great companions to museum exhibitions, serving both as supplements to enhance visitors’ experiences and as substitutes for those who can’t see exhibits in person. (We’ve reviewed several of this type of app: Color Uncovered and Sound Uncovered by the Exploratorium; Dinosaurs and Creatures of Light by the American Museum of Natural History. The […]